Helena Gelfor

Helena G.

San Jose, CA

About Helena G.

Background check: Last verified 10/21/2016
Helena passed a background check on 10/21/2016 that included the following:
  • National Criminal Record Check
  • County/State Criminal Record Check
  • Sex Offender Registry Search
  • SSN Trace & Verification
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Helena teaches: Ages 5 and up
Teaching since: May 1990
Last sign in: Yesterday


Classically trained at prestigious Mussorgsky school of music in St. Petersburg, Russia, with over 20 years of teaching experience. I teach Violin, Viola and Piano Performance, Music Theory, Music History, Sight Reading and Ear Training to children and adults of beginning to advanced level. I utilize several teaching methods to best suit the needs of a student and make lessons enjoyable and productive. I introduce my students to a variety of styles while teaching classical techniques for lifetime skills. When not teaching, I play with Nova Vista Symphony (First Violin) ,Campbell String Chamber Orchestra (Concertmeistress), Winchester Symphony Orchestra, and a variety of instrumental Ensembles featuring Klezmer Music, Russian Tangos and Brazilian Choros.

*** Lesson Details ***
My lessons are a balance of fun and focus. My students quickly learn the basics and start playing familiar melodies. I teach memorization techniques to develop a performing repertoire.
In addition, my students develop abilities in rhythm, melody, harmony, understanding of theory, and improvisation. I also help with school orchestra practice and audition preparation.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Dedicated Music Space, desk, piano, recording equipment, music stands, couch for parents to observe and wait or participate.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I expect the student to provide their own violin and bow, music stand and a notebook. Students may also need to purchase sheet music/music books. I will provide basic recording equipment (audio and video), and pre-recorded piano or orchestra accompaniment. A live piano accompanist is available for recitals and pre-recital rehearsals.

*** Specialties ***
Classical Violin, Viola
Fiddle - Klezmer, American, Celtic
Piano - beginning and intermediate levels
Music Theory, Ear Training, Sight Reading, Improvisation.

Photos and Videos

Helena is a part of a Klezmer Band, offering Community Outreach and Education.


Second Violin
Sep 2012 - Present
Winchester Symphony Orchestra of San Jose

Sep 2010 - Present
Campbell Strings Chamber Orchestra

First Violin
Feb 2008 - Present
Nova Vista Symphony

Languages Spoken

Fluent / Native Proficiency
Fluent / Native Proficiency

17 Reviews on Helena G.

Write a Review
Elsa Mar 3, 2017
· Violin · In home My daughter has had multiple instructors over the past 4 years and Helena is her favorite. Her technique and personality make her a joy to work with and Elsa is eager to practice and looks forward to her lesson each week.
Jill Mar 2, 2017
· Violin · In home Helena has great insight and can spot areas that need improvement quickly! She is kind and patient, and a wonderful violin teacher/player.
Joe A. Mar 10, 2016
· Violin · In home I am an adult beginner. Helena is amazingly patient and has clearly mastered teaching the violin. I am very excited that I found her and look forward to having her guide me on my journey to learn such a beautiful musical instrument.
Dawson S. Feb 25, 2016
· Violin · In home She is doing a wonderful job sharing the experience of music with our son.
Christina P. Sep 28, 2015
· Violin · In studio She has a great teaching style especially with young children. A very patient instructor. Recommend!
Serena P. Sep 12, 2015
· Violin · In studio Helena is wonderful! She is so patient with both my 6 year old daughter and I. We are both new to the violin but loving it so far!
Dana N. Mar 21, 2015
· Viola · In studio I'm very happy with my first lesson. Helena is very informative, and I really like the way she teaches, with wonderful attention to detail. I'm looking forward to next lessons. Meanwhile I'm practicing!
Debbie M. Nov 11, 2013
· Violin · Gifted Teacher!!!

If you are searching for an outstanding violin teacher, I highly recommend Helena.  Her students benefit from her many years of teaching and performing experience as well as her extensive educational background.  When you learn musical pieces with Helena she teaches proper technique with just the right amount of music theory to produce well-rounded musicians.  Some of her best qualities are her great abundance of patience that she mixes with professionalism, kindness, a sense of humor, and a great deal of encouragement.  Helena is certainly a violin teacher you will be glad you found. I feel privileged to be her student! Thank you Helena for continually inspiring me to learn and keeping me challenged as well!
Linglin D. Nov 5, 2013
· Violin · perfect teacher

Thanks Helena for her patience in teaching my 10-year old son.

My son is in intermediate and advance level. Helena makes music materials easy to understand so that he can love it.....
Leanna D. Jun 26, 2013
· Violin · Beginner Adult

Helena continues to me the best choice for me as an adult beginner on the violin. She is patient, knowledgable and I can't praise her enough. She knows just when I need the encouragement we beginners need. Very happy to have found her.
Helena Gelfor
Helena G.

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