Conference 2014

May 22-26, 2014   |   Minneapolis, MN

SAA’s 16th Conference aims to be a high point of inspiration for all participants!


Led by a team of more than forty enthusiastic teacher members, this mega-event will be brought to life by the participation of all who come together to learn and share ideas and inspiration.

Join your colleagues May 22-26, 2014 in Minneapolis and experience “Powered by Community!” You are an essential part of our Suzuki community, and your presence at the conference enriches the experience for all of us.  Don’t miss the chance to expand and share your vision for the future, and bring home tools to enhance your teaching, while making new friends and reconnecting with long-time acquaintances.

Plan to arrive on Thursday, May 22. Check-in begins at 4:00 pm. Conference sessions will begin at 5:00 pm, followed by a 7:30 pm keynote address by Dr. Robert Cutietta. Dr. Cutietta is dean of the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California.  An internationally recognized authority on the theory and practice of music education, specializing in learning theories and the psychology of music, he is the author of Raising Musical Kids: A Parent’s Guide.

Sessions, concerts and events (close to two hundred separate sessions and events!) will continue throughout the weekend, culminating in the Suzuki Americas Concert on Monday morning. Conference events will conclude at noon on Monday, May 26.

Conference Events

You can expect many of favorite events and session, including, but not limited to these:

Featured Guest Clinicians

William Preucil, Jr., Violin
Yukari Tate, Violin (TERI, Japan)
James Maurer, Violin
Mark Jackobs, Viola
Richard Aaron, Cello
Nicholas Walker, Bass
William Kanengiser, Guitar
Alexa Still, Flute
Nancy Toone, Flute Ensemble
Brian Ganz, Piano
Malgosia Lis, Piano
Dr. Bret Serrin, Piano
Paul Leenhouts, Recorder
Dr. Leon Thurman, Voice
Jeremy Dittus, Dalcroze
Robert Cutietta, Research Symposium Keynote
David Holland, SYASE
Rebecca Albers, Chamber Music
Kirsten Marshall and Emmett Drake, SYOA Conductors
Susan Reed, Music and Stories

  • Special Benefit Concert by guest performers
  • Keynote by noted guest speaker
  • Research Symposium on Talent Education
  • Pre-conference events, including Every Child Can!
  • Master classes for Suzuki students selected by audition
  • Inspiring performances by guest artist clinicians
  • Sessions in pedagogy and technique, instrument-specific and general
  • Opportunities to re-examine and renew our commitment to the Suzuki philosophy
  • Student choirs and ensembles
  • Suzuki Youth Orchestra of the Americas
  • International ensembles Concert, including a performance from the 2014 Latin American Ensemble!
  • Piano Concert student performance with teacher orchestra
  • Tradeshow exhibits
  • Heritage sessions
  • Suzuki Early Childhood Education sessions
  • Social time to reconnect with new and long-time friends
  • Creating Learning Community Awards presentation
  • Sponsor presentations
  • And much, much more!

View the 2014 Conference Events Overview page for further details on daily highlights and new events for 2014.

The Session Preview page (coming soon!) gives a sneak-peak at the many sessions the Conference will have to offer. Click on each session to view detailed descriptions and information on each presenter.

Student Events

SYOA 2012

The SAA Conference provides numerous events directed towards Suzuki students across the Americas. In addition to instrument-specific masterclasses taught by guest clinicians, students also participate in pre-selected ensembles which each perform at the conference. An exciting addition to the performing ensembles at the 2014 Conference will with the Latin American Ensemble, a tour group of over 40 students from across Latin America.

While participation for most student events is audition based, this year, the SAA is additionally hosting “Suzuki Americas 2014,” which is open to all Suzuki students across North, Central, and South America. This mega-event will be held both locally at the Minneapolis conference and in studios across the Americas via online streaming.

View the Student Events page for more information about conference student performances.

Support the Latin American Suzuki Ensemble

Colombian Suzuki Students

Colombian Suzuki Students

With piano teacher Dilva Sanchez

Image by Caroline Fraser

The Latin American Suzuki Ensemble is a tour group of students from across Central and South America who will perform at the 2014 Conference in Minneapolis, MN.

In May 2008, the SAA brought together the first Latin American Suzuki Ensemble, which played at the Conference in Minneapolis that year. It was a very touching experience that involved the work of many people—teachers, parents, students and friends. Many postcards remain from that experience: the hopes and expectations of the children and their families when they submitted the videos, the anxiety at the first rehearsal, the joy of sharing the work with teachers from all parts of the continent, the shining eyes and the concentration of the children at the concert, the standing ovation at the end of the concert, the words and the warmth of many experienced teachers from North America, whose voices are still an incentive to move forward.

While these children from Latin America have worked very hard to develop their abilities, many of them unfortunately do not have the financial resources to afford the travel expenses involved in participating in the conference. This is where you are needed. Make a tax-deductible donation to make this opportunity possible for these students—your support will make a huge difference in the lives of these children, the growth of the Suzuki method in Latin America, and the rich connections made between all students participating in the conference.

Thank you for making this opportunity a reality!

Donate To The Latin American Ensemble

View the Latin American Ensemble page for more information about how you can help.

Suzuki Americas 2014

Suzuki Americas Music Notes

Highlighting the community of Suzuki found across all the Americas and celebrating the music that brings us together.

Dr. Suzuki encouraged us to devote our efforts to educating children to have beautiful hearts and noble souls. Is there any greater calling than this?

The connections within our Suzuki community give us the resources to make this task easier. The SAA is a community representing great social, economic, and cultural diversity, and yet we all share the common language and love of music. We all have the potential to reach a level of proficiency to be able to share the gift of music with others. It is important to provide children with many opportunities to share these gifts in order to instill within them a nobleness of spirit.

Suzuki Americas 2014 will provide an excellent vehicle for bringing children together to share the beauty in their hearts. Students from the Latin American Ensemble and other conference student performing ensembles will join forces with children from all over North America to perform music from many cultures. It will be recorded as a webcast so that children from all over the world will be able to play along in a gesture of global solidarity through music. Together, we will illustrate that talent has no national or cultural boundaries.

View the Suzuki Americas 2014 page for more information about this event and how you can participate.