Hello! My name is Kristina and I am a proud musician and educator currently located in Zeeland, MI! I am so grateful to have the opportunity to do what I love every day and to share the joy of making music with my students! I earned my Bachelors in Viola Performance with a minor in Dalcroze Eurhythmics Pedagogy from the Cleveland Institute of Music in 2016, and an Artist Certificate in Viola Performance from the University of Tennessee in 2019. I have performed in concerts and outreach performances throughout Tennessee, Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, Maine, Pennsylvania, and New York, and have performed as a member of the Holland Symphony and Knoxville Symphony Orchestras!
I have been playing violin, viola, and piano for over 15 years. I began teaching as an assistant for CIM's Preparatory Orchestra Department, a position I held for four years while earning my Bachelors. As part of my minor, I also spent one year student teaching for CIM's Preparatory Eurhythmics Department and as a tutor for the conservatory. I moved to Tennessee in the fall of 2017 to earn my graduate degree as a Teaching Assistant for the school of music at UT, where I had the opportunity to teach private lessons and group classes to undergraduate viola majors and minors. I have also maintained a private studio of violin, viola, and piano students since 2012. I enjoy teaching a wide range of genres and styles, and have experience with students ranging from 4 to 64 years old. I welcome any student from beginner to advanced, as well as students with special needs.
I typically start my students by learning the basics of the instrument (i.e. how it is made, basic care, how to hold, etc.). For younger students, or those who are not experienced with reading music, I start with Hal Leonard's Essential Elements. If they are learning their instrument in school as well, I like to work through any music given by their teacher. As my students progress, I like to supplement with music from various methods, or with any songs/pieces that they wish to learn. I also like to encourage my students to improvise and learn music by ear as well as using sheet music. I do this through games and other fun activities in each of my lessons, as I feel that this creativity is so important for musical growth and confidence. Since performing is such an important aspect of music, I encourage my students to find opportunities to perform for others, be it for family and friends, studio recitals, nursing homes, church, etc.
I strive to create the most positive and encouraging environment for my students! Finding the best method to suite the needs of each individual is my foremost goal as a teacher. I believe it is my job to learn about my students and their specific needs and goals, and to tailor my teaching style in order to help them progress at their own pace. Most importantly, I hope my students find joy in learning! For me, the most rewarding aspect of teaching music is having my students leave their lesson feeling accomplished and looking forward to next week!
I couldn't recommend Ms. Z enough! My son has loved his lessons with her. His violin has brought him so much joy throughout the last year.
I am so glad I found Kristina! I used to play in high school and was nervous to get back into it, but she has helped me feel so comfortable and confident in my playing. I'm so happy to have music in my life again!
Ms. Z has been an amazing teacher for my daughter! She always goes above and beyond and I couldn't be happier with my daughter's progress in her lessons.
Ms. Z is amazing!! She's always so kind and helpful in lessons. I love how she let's me be creative while teaching me the fundamentals!