Helena Gelfor
Redding, CA
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Helena Gelfor

Helena G.

Redding, CA
Profile-background-check Background Check
This teacher successfully passed a thorough criminal background check with SterlingBackcheck. This badge verifies trusted teacher status.
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio
Levels taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Hello! I am a native Russian speaker, Russian language tutor, professional translator, and author of several literary works in Russian, as well as a music teacher. I am from St. Petersburg, Russia. I have been teaching for over 20 years. Our lessons will be informative and fun, I can't wait to meet you!

About Helena G.

Classically trained at 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.


Write a Review
23 Reviews
Collin R.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Helena is very helpful and encouraging.

Posted Feb 25, 2020
Matthew C.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

She is amazing! My son enjoy the class so much! I truly appreciate it.

Posted Mar 9, 2018
Barbara J.
Profile-location-online Online

Helena was a pleasure to work with. It was my first viola lesson in decades. I was not sure how the online lesson would go but it worked well for me. She was so patient and helpful and very encouraging. Look forward to the next lesson!

Posted Mar 2, 2018
Ayse K.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

she loves her job alot .and she makes you love it as well.

Posted Nov 14, 2017
Profile-location-home Student's 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.

Posted Mar 3, 2017
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Helena has great insight and can spot areas that need improvement quickly! She is kind and patient, and a wonderful violin teacher/player.

Posted Mar 2, 2017
Joe A.
Profile-location-home Student's 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.

Posted Mar 10, 2016
Dawson S.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

She is doing a wonderful job sharing the experience of music with our son.

Posted Feb 25, 2016
Christina P.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

She has a great teaching style especially with young children. A very patient instructor. Recommend!

Posted Sep 28, 2015
Serena P.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's 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!

Posted Sep 12, 2015
Dana N.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's 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!

Posted Mar 21, 2015
Debbie M.

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!

Posted Nov 11, 2013
Linglin D.

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.....

Posted Nov 5, 2013
Leanna D.

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.

Posted Jun 26, 2013


Helena is a great teacher. She is kind, patient and organized. She also has a good sense of humour which is nice to find in a music teacher. I am grateful I have her as a teacher.

Posted Apr 3, 2012

Amazing teacher

Helena is an amazing teacher.She has got good hold on violin and knows perfectly how to tune to student's needs. Feel lucky to learn from her

Posted Feb 23, 2012

I couldn't be happier. Helena makes me feel comfortable yet challenges me.

Posted Oct 23, 2011

Sudent Feedback

I am blessed to have you Helena as my teacher. You are giving me what I need to get and stay on the right track to learn.Thank you so much for what you have done for me so far.My hope is to become one of your best students.You are a wonderful teacher.Warmest regards,David

Posted Oct 23, 2011


Helena is a great violin teacher! she is very energetic, organized, patient and motivates me to keep learning. She is also very knowledgeable in music theory, and knows how to relate it to violin tones/melody as well as proper violin posture. I'm loving my lessons with her.

Posted Sep 24, 2011

Great experience

Helena is very good and friendly with kids. She has great teaching method. I am very impressed with the fact that she is always well prepared before each lesson. The amount of materials were just right for young kid and so were the amount of homework. My son is very shy but he now feels very comfortable with her.

Posted Jun 27, 2011

Great Teacher!

Miss Helena is the best teacher I ever had. She knows what I need work on and makes a custom lesson plan for my needs. She is really nice and very knowledgeable. I highly recommend her!

Posted Mar 7, 2011
Ellen M.
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Jul 12, 2021
Ellen R R.
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Apr 28, 2020

Photos & Videos

10 Photos & Videos


First Violin
Feb 2008 - Present

Nova Vista Symphony

Sep 2010 - Dec 2017

Campbell Strings Chamber Orchestra

Second Violin
Sep 2012 - Jun 2016

Winchester Symphony Orchestra of San Jose


Violin Performance
Jun 1975 - Jun 1978

Mussorgsky College of Music, St. Petersburg, Russia



Fluent / Native Proficiency


Fluent / Native Proficiency


Amateur Chamber Music Players
Jan 2010
ACMP — The Chamber Music Network is a non-profit organization that facilitates informal music-making by people of all ages and nationalities, from beginners to professionals. Founded as a non-profit organization in 1947, ACMP, originally the Amateur Chamber Music Players, was the idea of Leonard Strauss, an American businessman whose work frequently included travel. Tired of practicing alone in hotel rooms, he dreamed of a network of musicians who could contact each other for chamber music sessions while at home or “on the road.”
American Musicological Society
Jan 2004
The American Musicological Society is a membership-based musicological organization founded in 1934 to advance scholarly research in the various fields of music as a branch of learning and scholarship; it grew out of a small contingent of the Music Teachers National Association and, more directly, the New York Musicological Society (1930-1934).
California Professional Music Teachers Association
Jan 2004
CAPMT is the California State Affiliate of the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA). CAPMT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit music teachers organization of over 1,000 members, teaching in independent studios, private and public schools, conservatories, colleges, and universities throughout California. CAPMT offers a variety of state programs for the music student and education and professional opportunities for its members. California is divided into nine geographical districts, some of which are subdivided into chapters. The districts and chapters provide local opportunities for student performances, competitions, evaluations, and for teacher enrichment, education, and interaction.

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