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Since teaching viola lessons in New York, I have come to realize that people often start an instrument with incredulous awes at any experienced musician who rattles of lick or flourish. After progressing with your instrument, it is great fun to try and tackle these difficult musical feats, but also a great frustration to practice them and still have no results. Even with the correct basics to attempt a more virtuosic passage, people often stumble and take the incorrect notion that it takes two hours of drilling on a single passage in order to pull it off.
The good news is that a large percentage of seemingly difficult passages are actually a few basics combined as a sort of musician’s magic trick -- which is the clue to solving this problem!
When it comes to playing the viola, I teach my students in New York to analyze the passage in mind, break it down to a number of core elements (you can ask your teacher or an experienced musician for their input on this). Usually, these passages tend to consist of two core elements combined to create the effect that more is happening than really is.
From here, take one element at a time, practice playing it in its simple form, and play around with its variables (like rhythm). With both elements isolated this way, try slowly combining them once more. I found this technique creates familiarity and comfort for students taking viola lessons.
If practiced correctly, the passage in mind has most likely lost that mystique it once had and will now seem approachable. You will enjoy playing the passage and it will sound impressive at the same time. Needless to say, the truly virtuosic passages use combinations of 4-5 core elements! In this case, I remind the students I teach viola to in New York to not bite off more than they can chew! Happy practicing to all!
I can teach up to intermediate violists via the Suzuki method up to about book 7.
I teach the Suzuki Method and focus on playing by ear to allow you to develop great technique, intonation and enjoyment of playing music. We will later focus on music theory, sight reading and exploring any genre of music you're interested in after establishing a strong foundation.
I teach Suzuki method and traditional viola. I absolutely love the viola and enjoy teaching beginners, people who have already studied, and violinist converts!
I've been playing violin and viola since I was 4 years old. I had a classical training at the Kharkov Conservatory in Ukraine. And now I've been teaching viola for over 10 years, working with students of all levels of experience and all ages. Training my students in classical, jazz, pop and country music and manner of playing, dependently on a student's goal and taste. I can also accompany my students playing the piano, or playing viola or violin duets with them. And I guarantee: my lessons are always no pressure but fun with quick and serious results. My goal is for my students to feel real results even after the first lesson. I can also assist with preparation for any kind of performance/audition, recording process, touring, working on original repertoire. I'm looking forward to meeting you and helping you to achieve your goals and dreams!:)
AI have been playing the violin for 20 years, and I've studied with world-renowned teachers across the globe; at Oberlin Conservatory, Indiana University, Moscow Central Special School, and Juilliard. I have a passion for teaching and have been doing so since 2008. I teach privately but also have experience with group settings in an elementary school. I'm happy and comfortable teaching all levels of students, in violin, viola, piano, and voice! I use a combination of my own method, Suzuki, and String Pedagogy IU.
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