Offering violin and viola lessons to students in Northern San Diego County (Fallbrook, Vista, Oceanside, Carlsbad, San Marcos, Escondido, Rancho Bernardo, del Sur, and Rancho Peñasquitos) and Southwestern Riverside County (Temecula and Murrieta)--and students anywhere in the world with Internet access via Skype or FaceTime.
Thanks for stopping by! I am a classically trained violinist (click on About Me) with extensive experience as a player in professional orchestras (symphony and Baroque orchestras, pit orchestras for opera and musical theatre), a soloist (in restaurants and retirement communities), and a chamber musician.
I TEACH VIOLIN AND VIOLA
I moved to Fallbrook in 2010 and in April 2011 resumed my practice as a violin and viola teacher for students in San Diego County and southwestern Riverside County. (Students who live out of the area can work with me on the Internet via Skype, where my contact name is conviser, or on FaceTime.) If you are interested in private lessons, click on Lessons. I teach in my Fallbrook home studio as well as in students’ homes. Students have an opportunity to participate in semiannual recitals at my studio (in May and November); their participation is voluntary. The most recent student recital took place on Sunday, November 22, 2015, with 17 students signed up to participate. Students are not the only ones to play at the recitaIs: I also also perform chamber music with other professional musicians; at the latest recital, the pieces included the Mozart “Hunt” string quartet and the opening movement of the Brahms piano quintet. The photos on this site were taken at the recitals in November 2014, May 2015, and November 2015.
You can reach me by telephone at 760-645-3555 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I COMPOSE STUDIES THAT HELP STUDENTS LEARN
As you can see on the screen for The Pitchfixer Method, I compose violin études that teach according to principles of motor memory. These studies help students to learn quickly how to play in tune. The first volume of the studies, with études composed mostly in 2004, introduces students to major keys using the first position; the second volume explores minor keys and contains more advanced melodic studies. I released revised editions of these volumes in the fall of 2015. The studies in them employ time-tested techniques to help students move their fingers accurately from one string to another as well as new strategies to help students learn how to position their fingers for major and minor keys. In June 2013, I completed Volume III of the studies for intermediate students, introducing them to the second and third positions.
February 2014 saw the release of 24 Progressive Duets in the first position for two violins, and in March 2015 I completed a second volume of 24 duets. The latter provides students opportunities to shift between the first and the third positions. You can find a list of the completed volumes and other available compositions for violin and piano and for string quartet on the About Me screen.
I use more traditional studies for students as well when they are appropriate, particularly for students age 8 and below. Since 2014 I have been an enthusiastic user of the four-volume Sassmannshaus series, Early Start on the Violin (and Viola), the first volume of which is suitable for children as young as 4. Currently I am using it with several students between the ages of 4 and 10 and volume 3 with several intermediate students.
In 2007 I recorded 32 of the 100 or so études that are in the three volumes of Progressive Melodic Études on a CD called Intermezzo and other short violin pieces. You can listen to all of the recorded pieces in this and my other CD of original works, One Being Inside All, on the CDs screen of this website.
I LEARNED TO COMPOSE BY IMPROVISING
I got my start in composing by improvising on the spot for the Dances of Universal Peace (see http://dancesofuniversalpeacena.org), a form of spiritual folk dancing with which I’ve been involved for more than 20 years. (Composing is actually easier than improvising, because a composer can always go back to change what she or he has already written, whereas when one is improvising, the cat is already out of the bag by the time the sound reaches the listener’s ear!) After I’d been dancing for about five years, I was invited into the circle of musicians by a dance leader, and that started my ongoing career as a dance musician. I have played for the Dances across the United States as well as in Canada, Latin America, Europe, and New Zealand.
In the past several years, I have been co-teaching courses in Dance Musicianship at Dance retreats with a guitarist (Habib Dick Levison) and a drummer (Amir Nick Baker) with whom I play regularly. To see an article that the three of us wrote about learning to play for the Dances, go to http://origin.library.constantcontact.com/download/get/file/1103172936752-249/DanceMusicianship.pdf. The same skills that improvisation draws upon are helpful for ear training, and they provide me with the tools to assist those students who may be interested in learning to play by ear. Several of my current students delight when I accompany them with improvised lines.
I ALSO PERFORM AS A SOLOIST AND IN GROUPS
As a soloist, I have performed locally at the Vista and Fallbrook Senior Centers and at both the Regency and Silvergate retirement communities in Fallbrook; Murrieta Gardens; Oakmont, Cypress Creek, and Las Villas del Norte in Escondido; Merrill Gardens in San Diego; Rancho Vista in Vista; and Vintage East in Newport Beach. I currently offer four types of programs: (1) original compositions on the violin (with pieces ranging from waltzes and tangos to romantic and Baroque pieces); (2) classical and light classical violin pieces, such as Brahms Hungarian Dances and Fritz Kreisler favorites; (3) operatic arias and musical interludes by Verdi, Puccini, Gounod, and Bizet; and (4) tunes from Cole Porter, Gershwin, and other 20th century American musical theatre composers, as well as the Beatles and other popular groups. My repertoire contains more than 200 such tunes. I will be happy to provide references from activities directors at the facilities whose residents have enjoyed my performances. I also play in restaurants and at private parties, at which I am able to play many of the pieces as a strolling violinist.
Currently I play in several chamber music groups--a string quartet, piano quintet, and a violin-guitar duo. Click on the link Trio Capriccioso Performs Beethoven to watch a videotaped recording of a piano trio I was in that performed the first movement of the Beethoven Piano Trio Op.1, No.1, at a Mainly Mozart Festival Overture concert at the Balboa Theatre in downtown San Diego on June 11, 2014 with pianist Diana Yahya and ‘cellist Jenn Rawlins. The following year I performed in another piano trio at a Mainly Mozart Festival Overture concert on June 17th, playing the first movement of Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio No. 2, Op. 66 with pianist Siouan Zhou and ‘cellist Peter Ko. You may be able to listen to that performance by clicking on the following link: The Taurus Trio Plays Mendelssohn.