Official Photo with Mayor Kang

Dear Mayor Kang:

Thank you again from the Suzuki Violin students at TEC and SASS.   We very much appreciate having the opportunity to play for the Irvine City Council Meeting.  Even Dr. Suzuki looks pleased.   You make Irvine great by including young people like us.    We also had a great time at the Irvine Global Village Festival.

Ms. Cynthia

Official Photo with Mayor Kang after Sept. 8th performance for the Irvine City Council.

Official Photo with Mayor Kang after Sept. 8th performance for the Irvine City Council.

TEC and SASS Violin Student Play for Irvine Global Village Festival

This last Saturday from 10-6, on Oct. 3 a number of violin students from both Talent Education Center and Santa Ana Suzuki Strings participated in the Irvine Global Village Festival at Bill Barber Park in Irvine.   I want to thank all of the parents and students that came to help us make new friends that day.

They were invited to perform and do a demonstration under the Cultural Pavilion.   They played “America the Beautiful”  as the audience sang along.   Advanced students played “Humoresque” by Dvorak.    We also played “Song of the Wind”, Lightly R0w, and all of the “Twinkles”   Ending with our favorite game “Up like a Rocket” with the audience participating with their pretend bows and gumi life savers.

Several of our Twinklers helped out at the booth and got lots of extra practicing in the process.   We were surprised how many preschoolers sat down in front of our booth while we were playing.   We had quite an audience of children when ever someone picked up the violin and started playing.   The booth provided an great opportunity for violin students to get experience playing for an informal audience.

We let them play our rhythm instruments and passed out streamers to dance with.   With 4 different stages spread around the park, it was filled with music, musicians and dancers.   Not a boring moment.

There was lots of entertainment, food and activities.    But please bring your own water.   The audience kept asking us for ours.    If you come see us at next years be sure to check where to park to catch the shuttle.


Our Booth at the Irvine Global Village Festival after TEC and SASS students performed

Our Booth at the Irvine Global Village Festival after TEC and SASS students performed

TEC and SASS Violin Students play for Irvine City Council Meeting

For most students it was the first day of school but for TEC Suzuki Students and their friends from SASS at OCCTAC,  it was the day they played together for Mayor Kang and his City Council Meeting at the Irvine Civic Center.

My biggest worry was whether everyone would make it there on time with the extra craziness of the first week of school.   But everybody was there ready and tuned for the sound check.    I want to thank all of the parents that got them there calm and ready to play.

Even Dr. Jimenez made it back from her office at OCCTAC to see us play.   She was very pleased to see all of the children and parents working together for such a great purpose.

We got an applause from members of the audience just for doing a sound check.  There’s nothing like a little applause to calm down the butterflies in our stomachs.  Then they put us back in the green room for the longest 10 min. we ever had to sit through, while they started the meeting.    Everyone was so quiet with anticipation.   Finally we were led back into the hall with all of the students from age 4 and up.

It was our first time letting someone else run the volume controls on the sound system.   I don’t think they realized how big our tone was going to be so we restarted the Humoresque after they adjusted the sound levels.    When my students could hear the piano part they quickly regained their confidence and opened up their tone again.    The ensemble playing on the video is best after the first few lines  of music when we finally all begin to synchronize, including the sound guy.   Its not every day that he gets practice adjusting the sound for violins at a City Council Meeting.   Not to worry.  He picked up the violin sound with microphones so he could ballance it later.

The audience was very appreciative.   We got a wonderful applause.   The Mayor  was really great with the children.

Look for the    Jump To. . . .      drop down box below the screen and go to the line where it says:

 Musical Presentation just above   .2  and just below

Moment of Silence  in the jump to menu

The meeting was broadcast live within the city of Irvine on Cox Communications Channel 30.   And will continue to be available on demand using the ICTV menu:

We played :

America the Beautiful, Humoresque – by Dvorak and Twinkle A

We finished Twinnkle with our traditional game of  ‘Up like a Rocket’ with our Gummy Life Savers on the tip of our bows.    It was one more chance to make the Mayor laugh.    Then we all took some pictures with  Mayor Kang.    With all of those parents in the auditorium taking pictures this took almost as long as the music.

SASS and TEC Suzuki Violin with Mayor Kang at Irvine City council Meet

SASS and TEC Suzuki Violin students with Mayor Kang at Irvine City Council Meeting

 Official Photo from Mayor Kang

Councilmember BETH KROM  was right.  It would be really cool if Mayor Kang picked up his bow again to play Twinkle with us.   Maybe next time he’ll remember to bring his violin.  He has a standing invitation to join us for any of our sessions.    Group  Lesson is every Saturday at 3pm @ OCCTAC and our next joint public performance with the TEC students is going to be at the Irvine Global Village Festival on Sat. Oct. 3rd.

It all went by very fast.   And the children had such a wonderful experience.   They were so excited when we got back to the green room to put everything away.   What a wonderful story they have to tell their friends and family members.   It was even more wonderful to see children from both the Irvine Suzuki program and the Santa Ana Suzuki program playing together for such an audience.   I think they are fired up to do it again some time.

You may wonder how did we get an invitation to play for such an auspicious occasion as the first meeting of the school year.

Last April our Suzuki Studio participated Irvine’s Day In the Park.    It was early in the morning and it wasn’t very crowded yet.   Only two Twinklers, Jacob and Sophie were there to help me with our booth which we moved under a tree.    That was because my advanced students were all at orchestra rehearsal and some students were on Spring Break.

Mayor Kang was expected to open the event and afterward he always circles the booths and visits with everyone.   When he got to our tree he saw the children playing their violins and asked if he could play on my  violin.  How could I couldn’t resist?   Before you know it he and the kids were playing all the Suzuki songs that they knew.

My students discovered that this Mayor was not only an education mayor and a culture mayor.   He  was also a Suzuki Violin kid at heart.     We are very lucky to have a Mayor of Irvine who grew up playing the violin.

I want to thank Mayor Kang for inviting us, as well as  the City Council Members and everyone that  came to hear the children play.   You were a wonderful audience.   Thank you for giving our students so much encouragement and allowing them to share their abilities and enthusiasm with the local community  at your meeting and on your media service.   It was a privilege.

Mayor Kang is always welcome to come by and borrow my violin anytime he needs a break from the office.     We are just down the block from the Civic Center between the District and the Diamond Malls.

Ms. Cynthia

Making friends at Day in the Park


We had a successful event last Saturday at Day in the Park.    I want to thank everyone that came and played at our booth for the crowds.   Even though attendance was a little slow this year, this was our target audience:  local families with young children.   It was great experience for our students to serenade the little children who came by and sat themselves down under the shady tree at the entrance to the event.   This was a very appreciative audience even if you were just one of our Twinklers.    See link to Day in the Park Event photos:

TEC booth at Day in the Park

Jacob and Sophie with the Mayor of Irvine

Jacob and Sophie with the Mayor of Irvine

One of the treats of being at the park early enough to help Ms. Cynthia unload and set up the booth is that the Mayor of Irvine has a tradition of making the rounds with a photographer in toe.     This year it was Mayor Kang and he had a surprise for Jacob and Sophie.    After listening to Jacob play some of his first Twinkles for everyone the Mayor couldn’t stand it any more and just had to get his hands on a Fiddle.   Much to our surprise he recalled a favorite Suzuki tune and a few other favorites from his own childhood as a violin student.   He says that he still has the Suzuki Violin at home which he studied on.    If you go to the Day in the Park photo album linked above you can see all of the photos of him playing on Ms. Cynthia’s violin. 

Thank you Mayor Kang.   You are a real inspiration.   See how far studying the violin can take you.   We need more elected officials who have music in their backgrounds.

Jacob gives the Mayor a turn on Ms. Cynthia's violin

Jacob gives the Mayor a turn on Ms. Cynthia's violin

Even though it was a slower year for this event we still made some friends.    Keep a look out for a few more new faces in the studio.   Later some of our friends from the Santa Ana Suzuki Strings came by to play a few tunes with us.    And finally 3 of our students who came straight from their last Prelude Orchestra rehearsal came by and gave us quite a nice serenade under the trees from Suzuki Books II, III and IV.   See Announcement about their concert this Saturday.    Ms. Cynthia got to play harmony with these students.    If anyone has better pictures of these moments please send them to me for the blog.
Thank you to everyone who came to help with Day in the Park.     I also want to thank the Day in the Park event volunteers.   They were very helpful and open to our issues of playing music in the Sun on a hot day.
   By the way, has any one seen what happen to our beach balls?     I’m still looking for them.

Irvine Day in the Park, April 09′

TEC Booth at Day in the Park

TEC Booth at Day in the Park


The Irvine ‘Day in the Park’  is held every spring to Celebrate the national week of the Young Child.  This year TEC plans to have a booth there on the lawn.

  • Saturday, April 18  10:00-1:00.  
  •  Heritage Community Park.  


  Ms. Cynthia will be teaching some demonstration PreTwinkle classes with her Saturday morning PreTwinklers from 10:00-10:45.     If you are 3 or 4 years of ages we invite you and your parent to come and sit  in for a session.   Well we won’t exactly be doing a lot of sitting.   But you’ll get the picture.    We will be tapping our Twinkles, playing some finger games, dancing with streamers and moving to the music with our beach balls.    We also plan to do our game with the pencil bow and the life savers.   I know that will be a hit.

We will have a booth so that our Book I and II students can take turns serenading with the pieces they are practicing through out the morning for guest.    We will be on hand to pass out postcards with our website and answer questions.

By 1:oo we are hoping that some of our more advanced students will drop by after a busy morning with Prelude Strings Orchestra rehearsal for Lunch at the picnic tables  next to the pond.    It will be a Brown Bag Serenade with all the Suzuki Violin students we can round up for lunch.     Bring your own Sandwich and you can hang out with the musicians. 

If you would like to learn more about what we do in our Suzuki Violin program this is a very enjoyable way to spend the morning.   There will be many activities for children and performances by local organizations on stage.   This event happens to be sponsored by the Irvine  Child Resource Center and the City of Irvine.


TEC Fiddler at Day in the Park

TEC Fiddler at Day in the Park

TEC Students play in Prelude Strings Spring 08′

This Spring 4 of our students participated in a Spring Concert for the Prelude String Orchestra and the Prelude Chamber Strings.  These preparatory string groups which TEC student participants of Prelude StringsTEC student participants of Prelude Stringsprovide opportunities for students age 8 – 14 to have an orchestral experience from a young age.   Students are expected to audition every year in September.

TEC students after Prelude Spring Concert

TEC students in Prelude Orchstra.

This year was Katherine’s first year.   She had just finished Book I and was barely into Book II and starting to do some sight reading.   I must say she was a little nervous about the audition, but for such a petite young lady she is filled to capacity with enthusiasm.   And it must have shown through because the teachers at the audition could see how much this very



determined young student was going to accomplish in one year.   Don’t be fooled by her sweet personality when you see her coming your way.   Even as a first year participant she has already earned her first perfect attendance award.  Yea!! Katherine!!




Tianrui is a transfer student to our program.   He came to TEC from a program that already emphasized reading skills.   He has worked very hard to improve his physical control of violin technique and bowing.   He is now developing a wonderful tone.  Quiet and extremely polite, he has become a very sensitive musician.   In the middle of Book II when he auditioned, he has now progressed to the end of Book III and is starting to play his first concertos in Book IV.    Tienrei and AryaHe made it into the first violin section of Prelude Strings on his first audition.   We look forward to future progress.

Arya is becoming an experienced member of the Prelude Strings.   She is also busy supporting her local school orchestra as a cellist this year.    This seems to keep her interest in their fledgling school program.    She has also benefited from the experience of going to a summer music camp experience at Interlocken in Anarbor, Michigan.    Arya is now well on her way into  Book IV.   She has grown in musical leadership skills and increasingly takes her violin studies very seriously.

This year Kayla managed to secure a chair in the Chamber Strings.   As a dancer, a pianist and an avid reader she is also no stranger to hard work and perseverance.   This year she was the other student from TEC who earned a perfect attendance recognition.   She is undaunted by her seating in the III violin section in the back of the orchestra as she has quickly moved into Book IV this year.   She has grown with confidence from the challenge.

 Kayla in orchestra

I have a rehearsal

I have a rehearsal

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