Discount Violins in the Music Store Window or website

 

New Violin in its case

The New Violin

 

 

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.

Sensei said “Every Child” (even if he needs an arm.)

When Dr. Suzuki said “Every Child”  he meant it.

He didn’t mean:

Well …”If they don’t have any learning disabilities. or  If he has good vision.  or If she can hear normally. or If she has fingers.  or If he has both arms.”

While I was in Japan one of the students who impressed me most was a teenage girl who played the violin on her right shoulder because she was missing fingers on her left hand.  It was not a problem for her to hold a bow with this hand while she played Beethoven’s Spring Sonata for a recital.

More than 15 years later I am teaching violin at a non-profit in Santa Ana which serves special needs and underserved children.  My classes at the Orange County Children’s Therapeutic Arts Center are inclusive of children who are sometimes facing challenges.  But up to this point none of them were missing any limbs.

When one of my newest students approached me about studying the violin without a right forearm I couldn’t bring myself to say no.  The fact that he was missing part of his arm was not the biggest obstacle I expected to be challenged with.  I kept him in the PreTwinkle Violin class and started working with him.  I thought,  If we can put a man on the moon surely there is a way we can give this child full access to a musical instrument like the violin.    I was willing to collaborate with any technician would be willing to assist me in adapting any prosthesis he was already using for this problem.

Well, it wasn’t that simple.  Expect to make a few mistakes before you find the right device for a child who is growing.

It was up to me to find some way that we could make the violin accessible to this child.  So I rolled up my sleeves and went online searching everywhere I could think of.  And then I started asking everyone, including my sister the Special Ed teacher.  I had to work fast because this student moved through all his PreTwinkle work faster than any other student in the program.  I found myself scrolling through the entire FB page of the E-Nable community who are known for creating affordable hands for children with 3D printers.

Finally, I found a technologist I already knew personally as a musician right here in OC.  Embarrassed for not thinking of him sooner, I asked Gene if he could help us create a bow arm for my OCCTAC violin student so this child could hold a bow with his left hand instead of his right hand.   His immediate response,  I quote,

“We’re on it!”

Gene Wie not only mobilized a student team from one of his high school classes of techie students who are inspired to create solutions for children like my violin student, he is assisting me with the problems of reverse engineering a violin so my OCCTAC Suzuki Violin student can play it on his left shoulder comfortably.

To learn more about this ongoing project go the link for:

LimbArt

Source: limbART – Gene Wie

 

 

Time for Three: Ask PBS to bring their music documentary to Orange County for our children

Our favorite  String Trio, Time for Three just did a documentary on PBS.  But it was in Indiana.  Help bring it to PBS in Orange County.   http://www.wfyi.org/programs/time-for-three

Contact  http://www.pbssocal.org and let them know that you would like to see this program by inspiring musicians that your children can look up to.  You just have to hear this t believe it.

 

Wouldn’t your string play be inspired by that?

Nick Kendall is the grandson of John Kendall, one of my teachers and the father of Suzuki Method in America.  He and his friends are exemplary musicians equally talented in both classical and alternative styles.

Learn more about what our favorite Trio has been up to:

Time for Three: new album, documentary and mashup | Classical Music | NUVO News | Indianapolis, IN.

 

They have been recording more videos and Albums.  Including one with Christmas music.

Check out their new website:  http://www.tf3.com

 

Great examples of Musical Leadership

Great examples of Musical Leadership

Not even a flood can stop these kids.   What a great inspiration these young musicians are.   It makes me proud to be from Iowa.   If I had had access to the internet when I was a young musician I would have been organizing a musical movement like these kids.   Because Iowa is such a hard place to get out of, a giant corn field snack dab in the middle of  the country.    I thought nothing ever happened in Iowa.   Well I can’t say that today.

Read their blog on Iowa Makes Music and find out how these kids from river city Iowa are taking their musical abilities out of the practice room and making a difference in their local communities.   If they can be such a hit coming from a place like Iowa what’s stopping the rest of us.

Here’s just one example:

   Hi, I’m Kelsey a ninth grader at Rivermont Collegiate in Bettendorf, Iowa. I play the cello and so I wanted to participate in the Iowa Makes Music Arts Leadership Program because I am very passionate for music and I want to spread the sound of it to my community. I will perform my Chinese repetoire at at least 10 different community places in the Quad Cities (Iowa and Illinois). Ex) libraries, book stores,  retirement homes, hospitals, day cares…etc.

“Music is the bridge between different cultures and generations.” Like they say, one person can make a big difference. I hope that I can inspire some of you to do so as well!


Check out the Iowa story on From The Top.

 

http://www.fromthetop.org/

Pandora gets violin music on line

Finally Classical Music can get a melody in edge wise on line.

Finally Classical music can get a note in edge wise on the net.   Here’s a place where young string players can find and sample a wide range of classical music.    I will be bookmarking and creating stations for string music.

You can listen to as much as 40 hrs a week.

The Music Instinct on PBS

 

 Along with Bobby McFerrin and David Levitin the author of This is Your Brain on Music.     The site has many articles, interviews, videos and educational media.

The Music Instinct | PBS.

 

This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession
by Daniel J. Levitin. Plume/Penguin, 2007.

Congratulations to Ray Chen

This last month something happened that would have made Dr. Suzuki very happy.    A young Suzuki Violin student from Australia just won a very prestigious international violin competition.   Not only is he an amazing and gifted violinist but, he has no qualms about putting the references about his Suzuki childhood in his bio.

A must see requirement for all of my students.

The Queen Elisabeth Competition was established in 1937.    At the time it was known as the Eugène Ysaÿe Competition.    Ysaye was also a very famous violinist and composer of his time in Belgian.  H.M. Queen Elisabeth and the celebrated Belgian violinist and composer were behind this magnificent project.    It was not until after the war, in 1951, that the Queen Elisabeth Competition really came into being.   Since this time it has become a non profit foundation which awards 6 laureates each in violin, voice piano and composition.   It is an organization that helps gifted young artist start their careers.   So it is a very big deal.

You will find the best video of his playing on http://video.cmireb.be/vod# for as long as they post it.    There are CDs for sale of the sessions.   My hope is that a DVD will be available of the violin finalist so that students can see them in this quality. Three different recitals where played by those who made it into the semifinals.   At least three more works were performed for a jury by those who made it to the finalist.   The above link includes a full video of all three performances.

Cesar FRANCK�
Sonata in A major
CHO Eun-Hwa  ( composition finalist)
Agens
Pyotr TCHAIKOVSKY  Concerto in D major op. 35  

 

Notable is also the MOZART  Concerto n. 4 in D KV 218 which also includes his version of the cadenza   [CADENZE: R. CHEN] .   This is one of the Mozart concertos at the end of the Suzuki Violin Books.   Thank you Chen for making this recording available to Suzuki children the world over.  What a fine interpretation.

I could not help but notice  what I am sure the jury saw in Chen’s performances.   It was so much more than just playing all the right notes in the right places with the right interpretation.   Technically it was fluid and effortless as if the bow and the violin was an extension of his own body.   It was also the elegant agility that I have seen in Hilary Hahn.   You easily forgot how difficult the music was.   But it was more than that.   Clearly there was something in Chen’s playing that was missing in the other performances.

Ray played with such   a complete lack of self consciousness and enthusiasm for every note.   He was so at home and comfortable in each musical venue and style that you could not imagine that he had any fears about the performance.    He played with such exuberance, as if he was having the time of his life.   Ray seemed completely lost in the adventure of creating music and he took the audience along on the ride with every note.

I think Dr. Suzuki would have taken great delight in Chen’s performance.   To see him play the TCHAIKOVSKY  made me sense the power of Sensei’s presence in the world again.   It was an affirmation that as a Suzuki movement we are headed in the right direction.   Even the youth who chooses to take on the rivalry of musical competition should be able to do so with imagination and joy.

Sensei used to joke about living till he was 120 years old.    When you see Chen play you can not  help but believe that he found a way to cheat death with the next generation of young violinist.

http://www.cmireb.be/en/

http://raychenviolin.com/  Ray Chen’s site

Also a great joy to see playing was runner up Lorenzo Gatto.   http://www.lorenzogatto.com/en/index.php

Take time to see Gatto’s Mozart in the semi finals.  KV 219 is the other Mozart which Suzuki uses in the last two violin books with the Joachim cadenze.

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART
Concerto n. 5 en la majeur KV 219 | Concerto n. 5 in A KV 219
[CADENZE: J. JOACHIM]

We can not wait to see Chen play live in Orange County, CA.

Training of a Suzuki Teacher, documented.

Into

I was just on my SAA membership profile and noticed that they kindly put all of my Suzuki Teacher Training Experience on an accessible document.   Below you can see all of the training I received state side as well as with Dr. Suzuki.    Going all the way back to Doris Preucil you can see the first classes I took at the University of Northern Iowa where I met Martha Holvik and read my first copy of Nurtured by Love.     A book I read all night and into the next morning until I could finish it.    The UNI was also the place where I 1st met John Kendall when Dorthy Delay came from Juilliard to do master classes at Martha and Doris’s invitation.

In 1986 Dr. Suzuki came to the Institute at Stevens Point, Wisconsin where I took Book 5 with Allen Lieb.     Sensei was scheduled to do a group lesson on stage with all of the teacher trainees.   It was the first time that he worked with my bow hold.    Later after class Allen and Bette convinced me that I should attempt to go to Japan.   That they were kindly willing to recommend me.

Japan

You can see where it took me the next two years to save and prepare all of my paper work for the journey.    The month that I was scheduled to leave for Japan the last Centuries Emperor Hiro Hito died.   They decided to hold the funeral on the day that I was arriving at the airport.    My flight was almost cancelled for a reschedule.   Then they called back and said I would be arriving the day of the funeral when their was almost know one at all in the airport.   It was a national holiday.    The ride up the mountain to Matsumoto was very quiet.  It rained all day.   I took it as a significant passage of time.

My plan was to stay for 3 months.   Some how they became 3 years.  I soon became completely involved in the experience of Japan and studying at the Kaiken with Dr. Suzuki.   That story is a complete website in itself.  

After graduation at TERI I stayed on until February of the next year just to savor the experience of being there with out the pressure of preparing for the graduation.    I also made a point of scheduling my departing flight on the 3rd anniversary of Hiro’s Funeral.

California

That Spring California erupted in Flames.   It was a sign of the economic tide that was to come.   I sat watching the news and found my self wondering what I could do in this new home to make a difference.   It was great to see Bette Dyer again in 93 at Occidental in Pasadena, in LA.    I went back to visit Stevens Point one more time while its founder was still active.   So much had changed.   After being in Japan for 3 years I saw things so differently.  I had changed and I had so much to do.   We needed to find better ways to teach American children.    This list does not show the Montessori training and teaching or the Kindermusik activity.

I am grateful to all of the teachers you see on the list below.   They gave me a view to a whole new way of looking at teaching violin.    Seeing one of my students play a Seitz Concerto at the age 6 for John Kendall at a workshop in LA was very rewarding.    It was as close as I could get to sending such a student back to meet Dr. Suzuki.    Most of all I continue to feel an obligation to Sensei to do more.    I can not do enough to continue his work in the world.

Ms. Cynthia

 

Suzuki Association of the Americas

Cynthia Faisst

has completed and registered teacher training for

Level order

Course Location Date Trainer
How Muscles Learn Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 2025 2003 Susan Kempter
Violin Foundation 1A University of Northern Iowa Jul 1014 1978 Doris Preucil
Violin Foundation 1A Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Foundation 1B University of Northern Iowa Jul 1014 1978 Doris Preucil
Violin Foundation 1B Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 2 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1318 1984 Evelyn Hermann
Violin Book 2 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 3 American Suzuki Institute Aug 49 1985 Evelyn Hermann
Violin Book 3 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 4 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1116 1985 Bette Dyer
Violin Book 4 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 5 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1015 1986 Allen Lieb
Violin Book 5 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 6 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 6 Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 2529 1993 Bette Dyer
Violin Book 7 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 8 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 9 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Violin Book 10 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 20 1989Dec 20 1991 Shinichi Suzuki
Overview Books 1-10: Violin Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 2227 2001 John Kendall
Recent to Older in Date order

Course Location Date Receipt
How Muscles Learn Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 2003  
Overview Books 1-10: Violin Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 2001  
Violin Book 6 Southern California Suzuki Institute Jul 1993  
Violin Book 10 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 9 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 8 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 7 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 6 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 5 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 4 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 3 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 2 Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Foundation 1B Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Foundation 1A Talent Education Research Institute Feb 1989–Dec 1991
Violin Book 5 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1986
Violin Book 4 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1985
Violin Book 3 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1985
Violin Book 2 American Suzuki Institute Aug 1984
Violin Foundation 1B University of Northern Iowa Jul 1978
Violin Foundation 1A University of Northern Iowa Jul 1978

Suzuki Association of the Americas
1900 Folsom St Ste 101
Boulder CO 80302
www.suzukiassociation.org

Last updated
Jan 26 2009

Weekly Group Lessons at TEC, keep students motivated about practicing for their private lessons.

Every  Suzuki program should offer group lessons each week as a supplement to their weekly lesson.   All students taking a full 30 min. weekly private lesson at TEC is encouraged to participate in the group so that they can continue mastering and reviewing the violin skills that they are acquiring in from their personal instruction.  

TEC Group lessons are on  Saturdays at OCCTAC and share with the SASS program where we have more classroom space for children to move around in.   It is wise to check the schedule on the www.got2twinkle.com as there are sometimes adjustments in the schedule.    We have it linked on our Google Calendar on the the TEC ED Center pages at the top.

Group lessons are an opportunity for all of the Suzuki Violin children to meet and play together.   In order to stay motivated about practicing at home young violinist need to be making friends and relationships with other musicians.  It is an opportunity to review pieces and skills everyone knows and it is an opportunity to hear more advanced students who play pieces that younger students aspire to play in the future.

All Suzuki Students in our program from Pretwinkler to Advanced students are encouraged to participate.   New students and shy students are encouraged to come and observe.   Younger children are invited to watch more advanced group students for short periods at a time depending on their attention span.   Parents can learn more about the breadth of the program by observing students at different levels and skills.

The PreTwinkle group is an opportunity for our youngest children to bond and become comfortable with the teacher and new Suzuki friends they will be studying with in the future.   Through games and play they prepare their ears and their bodies for holding and playing the violin.   In a social group setting we can build up their endurance to hold  thier instruments with good posture for longer periods at a time

In the Fall older students are busy reviewing the pieces that they will need for Festival and auditioning for orchestra.   We would also like to have informal recitals at this time, at least 4 times a year  where the children have the opportunity to play their pieces for others.   Please watch for these in the Calendar.

Most importantly group lessons is a place where children can experience more of the fun of playing with friends and develop confidence in themselves. Children who have ample opportunities to review pieces they know and can play them easily begin to relax and enjoy their playing more. See advice from thie award winning Suzuki student.

Ray Chen: I started playing the violin at the age of four. I’m not quite sure where I got the idea; however, I do know that it was my idea, as I picked up the toy guitar, put it under my chin and played it with a chopstick… the lessons then followed. I started with Suzuki Method, which was fun and made me want to play. Every Saturday there would be a “group lesson” where all of my teacher’s students would gather and have a lot of fun. At the time, there were two things that were important to me about those group lessons: the part where I played in front of everybody, and the break where we would snack on cookies and cordial.

~~~~~
My teachers back in Australia have included the Hawkins Family. I studied with them for five years. They were very involved with Suzuki and emphasized the “having fun” part of playing music. It seems like a lot of players these days are forgetting this important aspect, especially as they get older and become more self-conscious.

–1st prize winner Ray Chen about group lessons in his Australian Suzuki childhood.