Has your child been eyeing that cute violin in the music store window this holiday season?
My advice: Buy yourselves a cookie and think about it. A musical impulse purchase at the music store can be very expensive. Don’t do it without the guidance of a trustworthy music teacher, who does not take commissions from any music store.
urselves a cookie and think about it. A musical impulse purchase at the music store can be very expensive. Don’t do it without the guidance of a trustworthy music teacher, who does not take commissions from any music store.
Let me explain why:
- Returns of instruments to your music store can be next to impossible.
- Any music teacher who must rely on the sales of musical instruments to make a living should not be in the business of teaching. Find yourself a better violin teacher. Your child deserves it.
- Teaching while retailing violins poses an ethical problem. It is not recommended.
- A trustworthy music teacher offers you a number of good affordable choices for finding the right size instrument for your level of study. They are completely neutral as far as violin or music shops is concerned and have only your child’s needs at heart.
- Do not even buy a gift certificate from the music store because once again it can not be returned if they don’t carry what you really need for your student.
- It is important to choose the teacher you want to study with before spending money on a violin so you can be sure of choosing the right size violin for the student. I have had too many new students who have been tricked into buying a violin that is too large for my students.
- Music shops do this to get more than one purchase out of parents who discover that they have made an impulse decision on an instrument the store was having difficulty unloading from its inventory.
- A qualified independent music teacher with a degree in music education can save you money in instruments and materials in the long run. Do not trust the teacher who works for the music store.
- There are more violin teachers available on your Google search for your area than you can see on the first page of your screen. Don’t settle for one of those teacher referral sites that you or the teacher have to pay for.
- Search for an independent music teacher who has a program that you can visit in their studio. Check out their credentials on their website. Visit them and see out they work with other children in your community. Ask for references from other parents.
- Avoid using a referral site that sends a teacher to your home. These are inexperienced teachers who are underpaid for driving around in their cars and may not have adequate credentials to be teaching because the agency is skimming off of their work. You should worry about inviting such a person into your home. One does not know how these people are being vetted.
This itemized quick list was created by a Suzuki Violin Teacher who studied in Japan with Dr. Suzuki for 3 years and who has her BA in Music Education. She has been teaching in the Orange County area for 20 plus years and has heard all the horror stories from parents about the things they have been through to get reliable music education for their children without being scammed.
I feel compelled to write this because I have seen more than the usual rip offs going on lately with music retailers and entrepreneurs trying to get into the business. I am ashamed to say that not everyone in the music business has your musical needs at heart.
When your child sees that violin in the window or the Christmas display at the mall keep them inspired. There is a qualified credentialed music teacher out there who can’t wait to meet them. But take the time to do some research on their aspirations so you make sure the Grinch does not take advantage of your musical dreams or Christmas fantasy.
I teach here in the Orange County area and you can go to my website at www.got2twinkle.com for more advice where this came from. See also my Pinterest link. There are also several books that parents and new students should read before purchasing a violin. More Posts to come.