Grace Young

Grace Y.

Portland, OR
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Lesson Details


Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Many teachers who teach viola are primarily violinists, and are not as aware of the extra attention to detail and slightly different techniques that this instrument requires. Since I am primarily a violist, I can teach tone production, posture, and other techniques from the perspective of a player who has spent time learning the idiosyncrasies that make the difference between an excellent violist and a competent one.

My teaching style is inspired by my initial training in the Suzuki method, and my studies with violist and pedagogue Karen Ritscher at Oberlin Conservatory. Please note, I have not yet received training as a Suzuki teacher and use the Suzuki method books and the teaching I received as a Suzuki student as a jumping off point for working on each student's individual needs.
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Grace teaches



Grace delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 3+ and special needs

Teaching since:
September 2009

I studied viola at Oberlin Conservatory of Music and moved to Portland three years ago to pursue performance and teaching opportunities. Since then I have performed with Classical Revolution PDX, Cascadia Composers and ARCO PDX and am a member of Macaulay Balkan.

My initial studies were on violin using the Suzuki method, which has greatly influenced my teaching approach. However, I am dedicated to customizing the lesson time and structure to the needs and priorities of my students.

*** Specialties ***
Very few "viola teachers" play viola as their primary instrument. As a full-time violist, I can help you learn how to play this idiosyncratic instrument from my own experience.


Principal Violist
Sep 2009 - May 2011
Washington Idaho Symphony

I led the viola section of the Washington Idaho symphony, and directed sectional rehearsals, providing bowings and articulation guidance, as well as occasionally suggesting fingerings.

Section Violist
Sep 2006 - May 2008
Washington Idaho Symphony

I played in the viola section of the Washington Idaho Symphony, prior to winning the principal chair.


Viola Performance
Aug 2008 - Apr 2009
Oberlin Conservatory of Muic


Fluent / Native Proficiency

Photos & Videos

A camera phone recording of a recent performance of mine at a friend's private venue.
Photo by Grace Y.

Photo by Grace Y.
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6 Reviews

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Jessica Feb 27, 2018
Violin · In studio

She adapts to what he is interested in and moves at his speed.

Jessica Feb 11, 2018
Violin · In studio

Good overview of basics. She connected well with William and was very patient.

Robyn Nov 5, 2017
Viola · In studio

I feel confident Grace will help me reach my goals, and she's really fun to talk to as well :)

Jeff Glaser Oct 28, 2017
Violin · Online

Grace is excellent! I feel extremely lucky to have her as my violin teacher. I was playing better after just one lesson with her.

Before I found her, I had been turned down by several other teachers on this site because I wanted to learn how to play the violin without having to learn to read music. When I saw Grace's video, I thought surely she would turn me down too, because she's an even better player than the teachers who had said no. I was very surprised and excited when she agreed to teach me. She saw no problem with giving me lessons without reading, which means that not only is she a better musician than the others, but obviously she's a better and more versatile instructor, too.

Like I said, I feel very fortunate. And, as good as she is, I would have expected to pay a lot more for her. I actually WOULD pay more. She'd be worth it! I've looked at dozens of other teachers on this site .. Trust me, she's the best.


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ariel Jul 20, 2017
Violin · In studio

Grace is a great teacher with a wealth of knowledge, customizing each lesson to the students specific goals with creative exercises and techniques that have helped with me as an adult with intonation , shifting ,scales and improvisation.I would highly recommend Grace for all student levels.

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Sue M. Dec 31, 2016
Violin · In studio

Grace is an excellent teacher. She keeps the lesson fun and interesting. I look forward to next week!

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