Julie Henigan

Julie H.

Springfield, MO
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Lesson Details

Acoustic Guitar

Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate
I offer lessons in both classical and fingerstyle guitar (especially for open tunings like DADGAD, for which I have published two books with Mel Bay). I tailor my lessons to the individual, but I like to concentrate on both technique and overall musical expression. When called for, I offer assistance in basic theory, including rhythm, chord structure, and melodic playing--and can teach both standard notation and tablature. One of my classical guitar students has commented, Julie "has patiently brought me through increasingly more difficult technique by choosing a wide variety of challenging but enjoyable pieces to practice. I am gradually working my way up the fret towards the 5th position. She has helped me with theory, including rhythm, the major and minor scales and chord building. Her empathy is a particular blessing for me because of my poor eyesight and the arthritis in my wrists, hands and fingers.”
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Julie teaches

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About

Julie delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 10+

Teaching since:
1990

I am a professional musician, specializing in traditional American and Irish music and song; I can, however, also teach classical guitar and beginning-intermediate violin. My CD, "American Stranger," has received critical acclaim and I have authored two books on DADGAD guitar for Mel Bay Publications.

I taught myself guitar at the age of thirteen, but took three years of lessons at Washington University, where I also studied English and French. As an adult I became interested in fingerstyle guitar in open tunings, especially DADGAD. I am, however, happy to teach in standard tuning--including basic guitar proficiency, classical guitar, and "folk" guitar.

I have played violin since I was eleven, taking lessons until the age of sixteen and playing in both high school orchestra and the local youth symphony. I later learned to suspend much of my classical technique in order to play both old-time and traditional Irish fiddle as authentically as possible; but I still retain my initial training and apply good basic violin technique to my fiddle and (of course) her violin teaching, while tailoring it to the musical idioms of each of students.

I have also studied voice, which again, however, I have never allowed to interfere with my performance of traditional songs--largely because I had developed a traditional approach to the singing of both American southern mountain repertory and traditional Irish song many years before receiving any formal instruction. This training, however, has given me greater insight into how to get the most out of your voice for almost any style.

I also taught myself to play lap dulcimer, basing my approach on the Eastern Kentucky styles associated with Jean Ritchie, Barbara Edwards, and Anne MacFie—that is, primarily using a small dowel stick or noter to sound the melody, and playing counter-melodies for song accompaniments.

My clawhammer banjo-playing is influenced by various Appalachian instrumentalists and accompanists (including Dock Boggs, Clarence Ashley, Hobart Smith, and Lily May Ledford), but my style is also influenced by years of playing with midwestern and southern-style fiddlers.

I welcome students ages 10 or above, and have learned to adapt my teaching style to the individual student, helping each one to make the most of his or her talents and enthusiasms, while emphasizing sound technique and good practice habits.

I also teach academic subjects, especially English (in which I hold a Ph.D.) and French (in which I hold a B.A.). In English, I emphasize good grammar and solid composition skills and try to get my students as excited as I am about everything from sentence structure to Shakespeare.

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Experience

Substitute Teacher
Aug 2014 - Present
Springfield Catholic Schools

Substitute teaching K-12, though mostly secondary level. Subjects have included English (Language Arts), French, and Music.

Private tutor--English
Jun 2010 - Present
Private studio

I have taught students of both middle school and high school age, concentrating on grammar, literature, and composition (writing).

Private tutor--Music
Jun 2010 - Present
Private studio

Although I have taught occasional private lessons since the 1990s, I have become more active as a private music teacher since 2010, teaching especially classical and folk guitar, mountain dulcimer, 5-string banjo, violin, traditional Irish and old-time fiddle, and traditional Irish singing (the latter both individually and in workshops).

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Grading and Teaching Assistant
Feb 2016 - Jun 2017
Missouri State University

Primarily commented on and graded Writing II papers (second-semester composition) and Folklore exams and essays. I also gave lectures for several classes.

Substitute Teacher
Jan 2010 - May 2012
Springfield Catholic Schools

Substitute taught K-12, though mostly secondary level. Subjects included English (Language Arts), French, and Music.

On-line Essay Tutor
Aug 2009 - May 2012
Smarthinking, Inc.

Evaluated and commented on student essays, mostly secondary and university level (8th grade through graduate theses).

Adjunct Instructor
Aug 2010 - May 2011
Drury University, English Department

I taught Fundamentals of Composition on the Drury University-Ava campus and The Nature of the English Language on the Springfield (main) campus.

Substitute Teacher
Oct 2008 - Jan 2010
Springfield (MO) R-12 district

Taught mostly on the secondary level, all subjects, but primarily English (Language Arts), French, and Music.

Substitute Teacher
Nov 1994 - May 1998
Springfield (MO) R-12 district

Taught mostly on the secondary level, all subjects, but primarily English (Language Arts) and French.

Education

Ph.D. English
Aug 1999 - May 2009
Unveristy of Notre Dame
M.A., Folklore
Aug 1984 - May 1986
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Languages

English
Fluent / Native Proficiency
French
Professional Proficiency
Irish Gaelic
Professional Proficiency

Certifications

Missouri State Teacher's certification in High School English
Jul 2009
Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Certified via the Ph.D./Praxis route.

Photos & Videos

Me and my 1936 2-17 Martin guitar.

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Photo by Julie H.

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At a Music by the Bay house concert (Gary Martin's), Assonet on the Bay, c. 1996,

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For "American Stranger" cover; taken by Jim Jones, early '90s.

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Promotional photo, 2011, by Lee Worman.

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Promo shot, by Jim Jones, circa 1990.

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Performing at the Tree House concert series, San Anselmo, California, August 2018.

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Fiddler's Hearth, South Bend, Indiana, early 2000s, with Autumn Rhodes and Sean Hoffmann (not pictured).

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"Adieu, My Lovely Nancy," from my "American Stranger" CD; illustrations by David Kendall. Altan and Jeff Davis have since recorded the song.

4 Reviews

Write a Review
Mindy M. Feb 27, 2019
Guitar · Online

Very patient and experienced

Tammy M. Feb 18, 2019
Dulcimer · In home

Thoroughly enjoyed the lesson. Julie is very talented, patient and easy to be with.
I am excited to learn from her.

Rose Sep 4, 2018
Dulcimer · In home

I loved working with Julie. She considered what my goals were for playing and the playing style I was interested in. She then guided my lesson practice toward those goals, while at the same time making sure I was getting the underlying foundational principles to build upon. I'm off to a good strong start and I'm certain I will continue to build my skills and enjoy playing music for many years.

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Rose Jul 1, 2018
Dulcimer · In studio

I'm very excited about my lessons.

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