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BM, University of North Texas, Cello Performance MM, Oklahoma State University, Cello Performance
2013 - Patti Johnson Wilson Graduate Fellowship, Oklahoma State University
I am an experienced and passionate musician with over a decade of cello and 6 years of teaching experience. In my professional experience, I have performed with the Austin Symphony Orchestra, San Angelo Symphony Orchestra, Irving Symphony Orchestra, as well as many amateur orchestras and chamber groups throughout Texas. I recently completed a two-year fellowship with the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra while pursuing my Masters degree. I am now freelancing and teaching in Tulsa, OKC, Stillwater, and surrounding areas.
I have taught cello for the past five years, beginning with a small private studio in my home town of Austin in 2009. I have also taught through public school systems in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex, where I gained the bulk of my teaching experience with over 25 students. Through this experience, I have developed an effective and enjoyable way of teaching all of my students regardless of skill level, age, and talent. I balance the amount of time I spend talking with time listening - there is nothing more discouraging than a teacher just repeating the same information or nagging a student to practice instead of listening to the student's concerns and trying to help them learn the instrument!
My teaching methods focus on incorporating many different styles of pedagogy, including the Suzuki Method, the Alexander Technique, and the "Russian" school of music instruction. I draw many of my techniques from my previous teachers, Shawn Sanders and Nikola Ruzevic, whose diverse backgrounds in music have given me an excellent fusion of contemporary and classical teaching styles. Once a student has reached an acceptable level of comprehension in the classical style, I may begin to develop ear training and musicianship using pop music according to the student's tastes and goals.
My teaching style is dependent on active involvement for all parties involved. For this reason, I encourage parents of young students to sit in on the lesson so they can understand how I want the student to practice and prepare for the coming lesson. For other students, I will have them keep a practice log in which I can write the expectations for the coming lesson and "assignments" to be completed. Developing a student's comprehension of music and playing ability is not a "one style fits all" task, so I tend to choose the right teaching style based on the student; one student may need a very sympathetic and caring teacher to encourage their progression, while another may need a tough teacher to challenge them to practice more often. Whatever the case, by actively practicing between each lesson and by carefully listening during a lesson, my students can achieve any goal they set their minds to.
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