Ok, I admit it, the pic is from the 90's! I'm happy to report that I perform and teach with more freedom, joy and passion than ever before. If you are like most parents or prospective adult students, you will want to make sure that, in addition to passion, I have the knowledge, skill and credentials to teach music as well as Alexander technique. Here's some information about me.
MY PASSION FOR TEACHING
My earliest memories of music include listening to my father play the piano as I was falling asleep, and being filled with a deep peace and love of music. I just had to learn to play, yet as I started taking lessons and performing I often felt nervous while performing and overly concerned about making mistakes. When I reached the college level I discovered the Suzuki method and it’s brilliant insight that learning music was best approached in the manner that we learn our first language. Rather than feeling nervous and fearful, children can learn music in a loving and encouraging environment and still make the optimal level of progress for that particular individual.
Along the way I realized that playing music was inseparable from movement, and that restrictions in the way I moved limited the freedom to fully express myself and find fulfillment in the music. This led me to study the already world renowned work of Alexander. I immediately understood why such places as Julliard had adopted his methods, and embarked on a journey of self-exploration into these insights and understandings. The Alexander work came to inform my living and my teaching in a profound way.
The Suzuki Talent Education Method, and Alexander Technique helped answer my questions about what teaching ingredients help a student reach their fullest potential. Training in Neurolinguistic Programming, which is all about how we learn and change, and reading such books as The Inner Game of Music, by Barry Green, and Multiple Intelligences, by Howard Gardner, have helped me individualize lessons to each person’s learning style.
Following is a view of the path I’ve followed in performing and teaching……
• Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Strings with a K-12 teaching certificate from the University of Michigan School of Music
• Seven years of Suzuki Cello training, Units 1A-6
• Paul Rolland Workshops in the Teaching of Action in Violin Playing
• Margaret Rowell and Irene Sharp string pedagogy workshops with leading edge training in effective technique and expressiveness based on freedom of movement
• Cello lessons with renowned performers/artist teachers including Rafaele Altweg at Die Akademie der Musik, Zurich, Switzerland; Jeffry Solow at the University of Michigan and Chautaugua Summer Festival; William Conable Professor of Cello and Alexander Technique at Ohio State University; Tanya Carey at Meadowmount Music Camp; and Baroque Cello with Enid Sutherland of Ann Arbor Michigan
• Graduate of four year Alexander Technique Teacher Training Program at the Alexander Foundation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
• Four years of classes in Neurolinguistic Programming(NLP) and its application to teaching, learning, and performing
• The Body-Mapping Course: What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body with Barbara Conable
Eloise Ristad, Soprano on Her Head Workshop, on imaginative, playful ways to overcome performance blocks and performance anxiety
My teaching experience includes:
• Four years of teaching strings and orchestra, fifth grade through high school, for the Manchester Public Schools
• Starting the Ann Arbor Suzuki Institute cello program. Teaching Suzuki cello 1975 to the present
• Over 30 years of teaching 4 year olds through seniors in my home studio!
• Teaching cello ensemble classes and Alexander Technique at the Superior String Alliance Summer Music Camps
• Teaching Alexander Technique at Meadowmount Music Camp, 1989
• Numerous Alexander workshops and presentations including: “Alexander Technique for Musicians: Teaching Coordination and Ease”, and “Alexander Technique and Singing: Freeing Your Voice by Freeing Your Body” for the Midwestern Conference on School Vocal and Instrumental Music; and “Alexander Technique as Movement Medicine” for the Michigan Music Teachers Association
• Currently teaching Alexander lessons and classes at my home studio, and lessons and workshops at a Transformation Station, LLC, an Ann Arbor massage therapy practice and education center
My performance experience includes:
• My earliest performances were numerous cello, piano, and dance recitals starting in grade school, and yearly first place awards for piano and cello in the Midland Music Foundation contests for junior and and senior high school students
• Playing in the Saginaw, Flint, Midland, and Jackson symphonies, and the Delta College Summer Festival Orchestra
• Performing with a piano trio humorously named the Door Stoppers Trio, we sounded great, but what a name!
• Playing Baroque Cello in the Oriana Early Music Concert Series
• Touring with the Superior String Alliance Orchestra and Chamber Ensembles
• Performing in the Westside Trio, a flute, cello, and violin trio that plays all genres of music from Renaissance to Classical to Fiddling Music and Jazz. We play for weddings, receptions, children's events, and more! For bookings, call Debbie Ash at (734) 995-4417.
• Cello recitals
Phone: (734) 665-0849