Featured Guests

This is a list of the clinicians, conductors, performers, and keynote speakers that are confirmed for the 2016 SAA Conference. More clinicians will be added to this page in the near future.

Masterclass Clinicians
Bass
Cello
Flute
Guitar
Harp
Piano
Recorder
Viola
Violin
Voice

Conductors & Performers
SYOA
SYASE
Chamber Music Masterclasses
Advanced Violin Performing Ensemble

Minnesota Orchestra Performance

Keynote Speakers

Dalcroze

Masterclass Clinicians

Bass

Bass at the Conference
By Chris Rathbun, 2016 Conference Bass Coordinator

I don’t need to tell anyone, who has taken that step, about how amazing, transformative, educational, coalescent, cathartic, rejuvenating, enlightening, adventuresome, bonding, and fun it can be. You know.

The SAA Conference is a carnival of music scholarship. You will discover things that you didn’t know you were looking for.

Like many musicians, I spend a lot of time in my car. I just finished listening to a fascinating Great Courses college lecture recording called, “Music and the Brain” by Professor Aniruddh (Ani) Patel -only to find out that he will be one of the keynote speakers!

You might not expect to be advised of an app (http://www.fiveoverthree.com), for developing polyrhythm fluency during a cello masterclass, as we were in 2014. The 16th Biennial Conference included sessions that explored jazz, fiddling, left hand finger pressure permutations, Skype teaching, body mapping, bow rehairing, public speaking, improvisation, world music, something about Shakespeare and Led Zeppelin (you had to be there), college auditioning, and so many of the minute technical details of teaching someone how to play a musical instrument (voice included).

So, for the cost of the flights (or bus ride) and a place to stay, you get an education and networking equivalent to a couple of college courses.

But wait! There’s more! Just for slogging through my remarks, I’ve included a Dropbox link to my entrancing graphic description of comparative double bass methods’ diversity of position systems from Simandl to Rabbath. https://www.dropbox.com/s/b4w25jv6×9pluc2/Bass%20positions.pdf?dl=0 The bass is as anomalous as it is ubiquitous.

Thanks, and I’ll see you there!

Kevin Brown

Kevin Brown

Minnesota native Kevin Brown began playing double bass at age three. He has since gone on to perform with esteemed ensembles across the United States and joined the Detroit Symphony Orchestra as Principal Bass in 2014. Mr. Brown began his collegiate studies with Peter Lloyd at the University of Minnesota, but ultimately completed his bachelors and masters degrees at Rice University as a student of Paul Ellison. Upon completing his degrees he went on to work with David Moore at USC. While a student at Rice, Brown performed extensively with the Houston Symphony, and joined them on tours to New York and Moscow. In 2009 he won the ISB Orchestral Competition, which earned him a week in the Philadelphia Orchestra bass section. Before his appointment to the DSO, Brown also appeared as guest principal bass of the Atlanta Symphony. Mr. Brown has spent many of his summers performing at celebrated music festivals both nationally and abroad, including Tanglewood, Schleswig-Holstein, and Le Domaine Forget. His interest in Baroque music led him to study historical performance practice at the Accademia di Musica Antica in Brunico, Italy, and the International Summer School of Early Music in Valitice, Czech Republic.

Cello

Cellos at the Conference!
By Beth Goldstein-McKee, 2016 Conference Cello Coordinator
At the SAA Conference 2016, we have the opportunity to explore our journey as Suzuki cello teachers. We look forward to sessions on our history, our pioneers and what influences came together to build the Suzuki Cello Method. Our sessions will further our understanding and development of who we are as Suzuki cello teachers now and into the future.

Joining us for the 2016 SAA Conference as our guest cello clinician is Amit Peled, professor of cello at Peabody Conservatory. Around the world this year, he has been playing his “Homage to Casals” recital on Casals’ Gofriller cello. Having embraced the short pieces in our later book repertory in his own performances and pedagogy, this clinician will surely have lively insights to share with young performers’ about bringing these pieces to new performance levels during master classes at the conference.

And a link to the past with a view toward the future, he will be playing on Casals’ cello. Casals’ sound has inspired generations of musicians including Dr. Suzuki. Amit Peled talks about playing Casals’ Gofriller cello in his “Soulful Sound” YouTube video and compares the experience to being a passenger.

Traveling and sharing together our adventures, perspectives and knowledge contributes to our growth. One of my many fond conference memories happened at the last SAA conference that Dr. Suzuki attended. Dr. Suzuki visited the cello teachers to talk with us, and we greeted him as a group by playing the Swan for him. He received our gift with so much happiness. Together let’s create new memories and hear our favorite ones retold. Looking forward to seeing everyone at the 2016 SAA Conference!

Amit Peled

Amit Peled

From the United States to Europe to the Middle East and Asia, Israeli cellist Amit Peled, a musician of profound artistry and charismatic stage presence, is acclaimed as one of the most exciting instrumentalists on the concert stage today. At 6′5″ tall, Peled started life as a basketball player and was called “larger than life” when he enveloped his cello and “Jacqueline du Pré in a farmer’s body.” Peled often surprises audiences with the ways he breaks down barriers between performers and the public, making classical music more accessible to wider audiences. Tim Smith of the Baltimore Sun reflected on a recent performance: “Peled did a lot of joking in remarks to the audience. His amiable and inviting personality is exactly the type everyone says we’ll need more of if classical music is to survive. ”

During the 2014/15 season Mr. Peled will continue sharing with audiences around the world the sound of the historic cello of Pablo Casals. The instrument, a Goffriler ca. 1733, was personally handed to him by the Maestro’s widow, Mrs. Marta Casals Istomin. Some of the upcoming highlights with this historic cello include a 20 cities US recital tour entitled “Homage to Pablo Casals” culminating in a performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, recording the Miaskovsky Cello Concerto for Naxos, and a return trip to Asia for recitals and performances with the National Symphony of Taiwan to name a few. As an advocate of modern music Mr. Peled will also premier a solo piece written especially for him by composer Lera Auerbach.

Mr. Peled has performed as a soloist with many orchestras and in the world’s major concert halls such as: Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall, New York; Salle Gaveau, Paris; Wigmore Hall, London; Konzerthaus, Berlin; and Tel Aviv’s Mann Auditorium. Following his enthusiastically received Alice Tully Hall concerto debut playing the Hindemith cello concerto, the New York Times stated: “Glowing tone, a seductive timbre and an emotionally pointed approach to phrasing that made you want to hear him again.”

As a recording artist, Mr. Peled recently released his fourth Centaur Records CD, Collage, which follows three extremely successful installments, The Jewish Soul, Cellobration, and Reflections. As an active chamber musician, Peled is a founding member of the famed Tempest Trio with pianist Alon Goldstein and violinist Ilya Kaler. Their Dvorak CD on Naxos has been described as “ The best ‘Dumky’ on disc ever!”

Mr. Peled is also a frequent guest artist, performing and giving master classes at prestigious summer music festivals such as the Marlboro Music Festival, Newport Music Festival, Seattle Chamber Music Festival, Heifetz International Music Institute, Schleswig Holstein and Euro Arts Festivals in Germany, Gotland Festival in Sweden, Prussia Cove Festival in England, The Violoncello Forum in Spain, and the Mizra International Academy and Festival in Israel.

Amit Peled has been featured on television and radio stations throughout the world, including NPR’s “Performance Today,” WGBH Boston, WQXR New York, WFMT Chicago, Deutschland Radio Berlin, Radio France, Swedish National Radio & TV, and Israeli National Radio & TV.

One of the most sought after cello pedagogues, Mr. Peled is a Professor at the Peabody Conservatory of Music of the Johns Hopkins University.

Flute

Flute at the Conference
By Dr. Sasha Garver, 2016 Conference Flute Coordinator

Dear Fellow Suzuki Flutists:
It is with great excitement that I am able to announce that Marco Granados is the scheduled flute master clinician and performer for the 2016 SAA Conference! Marco will be giving a masterclass, a lecture/recital and will be hosting a session on improvisation for teachers and students! Marco is a devoted flute educator and will be sharing his pedagogy with us.

I encourage you to have students apply for the Masterclass and the Flute Performing Ensemble events at the SAA conference—this is a wonderful enrichment and performance opportunity for students levels Book 3 and up. Students make new flute friends from all over the world, perform in a variety of events, as well as interact with world-class clinicians!

I also want to solicit proposals for sessions and nano-sessions from Flute Teachers— we would love to hear about group class and practice ideas in your home studios, teaching adventures, use of technology, thoughts on pedagogy, supplemental repertoire and more! The application is online, very easy to fill out and we are not looking for things to be “academic!” We want to hear from Suzuki flute teachers from all over the Western Hemisphere and what unique and wonderful things you are doing in your studios!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or suggestions you may have! Thank you.

Marco Granados

Marco Granados

Haynes Artist Marco Granados, a native of Venezuela, maintains an active international career as a soloist, chamber musician, and educator. His diverse repertoire spans from classical to folk, with an emphasis on Latin-American music as his specialty. He is currently a member of the innovative Chamber Ensemble Classical Jam. Mr. Granados’ collaborations also include those with The Cuarteto Latinoamericano, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and with such distinguished artists as Paquito D’Rivera, flutist Ransom Wilson, harpist Nancy Allen, oboist Heinz Holliger, flutist William Bennett, as well as with soprano Renee Fleming and baritone Dwayne Croft. Recent performances include recitals at Wigmore Hall in London, Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium and tours of the US, Slovenia and South Africa. He has also performed at many summer music festivals including Moab, Chautauqua and the Colorado Music Festival in addition to the Caramoor International Music Festival. From 2007 to 2009 Mr. Granados was Music Advisor to Caramoor’s Latin American Music Initiative: Sonidos Latinos.

In his native country, Mr. Granados has performed with many of the leading Symphony Orchestras, premiering both the Jacques Ibert and Aram Khachaturian flute concerti with the Maracaibo and Venezuelan Symphony Orchestras, respectively. He also gave the South American premiere of the Concerto for Flute and Orchestra by Mexican composer Samuel Zyman with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Lima in Peru. A devoted educator, he has traveled the world teaching children about the wonder of creation through his composition workshops and is currently on the faculty of the Longy School of Music of Bard College.

Guitar

Guitar at the Conference
By Mychal Gendron, 2016 Conference Guitar Coordinator
The Suzuki Guitar community is enthusiastically looking forward to the 2016 SAA Conference in Minneapolis. We hope and expect to equal our teacher attendance at the 2014 event. The schedule will include interesting and insightful presentations, formal and informal performance opportunities, and a world-class guest artist.

Scott Tennant

Scott Tennant

Our Guitar Clinician, Scott Tennant, is considered to be one of the world’s premiere guitar virtuosos and is a favorite guest performer with orchestras, on music series and major guitar festivals around the world. He is a founding member of the Grammy®-winning ensemble L.A. Guitar Quartet, now in its 30th year. He has made numerous recordings as a soloist on the GHA and Delos labels, and with members of the LAGQ he has recorded for GHA, Delos, Sony Classical, Windham Hill, Deutsche Grammophon and Telarc labels. Their Telarc release “LAGQ LATIN” was nominated for a Grammy®, and it was their Telarc title “LAGQ’S GUITAR HEROES” which won a Grammy® as the best classical crossover recording of 2005.

Scott is well known as a teacher and author, currently with eight books to his name. His first book, Pumping Nylon, is an advanced book on classical guitar technique and is used by students and teachers alike in most of the world ’s major guitar programs. It has attained a kind of “cult status,” being hailed as the only book of its kind. He lives in the Los Angeles area and serves on the faculties of the USC Thornton School of Music and the Pasadena Conservatory of Music.

Scott will be presenting a Masterclass for Suzuki guitar students who have been accepted by audition, as well as giving a Lecture-Recital for the entire guitar community. Both events are open to all interested listeners.

Back by popular demand, our Guitar Ensemble, comprised of Suzuki students and teachers, will perform as part of the weekend conference activities. Our rehearsal schedule will include music composed, arranged and conducted by our own members.

One of our most inclusive events is the Round Robin Guitar Play-In. Teachers and students form a large circle of players and perform Suzuki repertoire with all members of the group choosing pieces and variations – sharing and equality make this a meaningful experience for all.

We always look forward to our Session Presentations. This is open to the entire community of guitar teachers and is both a chance for sharing innovative ideas about music and pedagogy plus an opportunity to learn from and be inspired by our colleagues.

The 2016 SAA Conference is shaping up to be great experience for guitar instructors and their students – mark the dates and be sure to be there!

See the interview with Scott Tennant

Harp

Harp at the Conference
By ShruDeLi Ownbey and Emily Gerard, 2016 Conference Harp Area Coordinators

The 2016 SAA Conference for harp will include “must attend” workshops for harp teachers as well as more general workshops for teachers of any instrument.

Maria Phippen will discuss her success in creating the extremely successful Utah Suzuki Harp Institute. She has worked hard to make Institutes an “experience” for each student. She wants there to be a sense of “community” that is fun and an event to be treasured. There are many activities outside of the private lesson, technique class, large group ensemble and final concert.

The Arts and Crafts classes are always popular and students even created a small lap harp in one of our past Institutes. When there are siblings attending who do not play the harp, there are always winning classes for them to participate in from drumming to theory and juggling.

Besides being a strong Suzuki harp teacher, MiKell DeMille has three daughters who play the harp. She is going to share creative ideas about juggling practicing and teaching. The practice booklet for her students is amazing. She will share it with us. The differences between practicing with a 4-6 year old and a teenager will be helpful to both parents and teachers who attend.

Anamae Anderson and Marilyn Dodson are joining forces to present ideas on student practicing. They are bringing materials for anyone attending the class to create one of their studio incentives by the end of the workshop. They are presenting answers to the following questions: “Has your studio ever hit the practice slumps in January? Do you sometimes feel like your students are allergic to the metronome? Do you find yourself trying to cram too many things into one lesson?”

Nicole Brubaker Brady

Nicole Brubaker Brady

Dr. Nicole Brubaker Brady is our clinician who will be teaching two master classes and presenting three workshops. Dr. Brady, a native of Salt Lake City, Utah, is a musician who enjoys presenting traditional and contemporary repertoire to audiences around the world. She holds a doctor of musical arts degree from The Juilliard School and currently serves as professor and director for the harp program at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. She also maintains a small private Suzuki harp studio. Her students have been prizewinners in national and international competitions. A versatile performer, Nicole has appeared as a guest artist in embassies, consulates, and for government events in places such as Russia, France, the U.S., and the United Nations. She has been a prizewinner in the American Harp Society National Competition multiple times and has also been the recipient of several scholarships, including the Fulbright Scholarship to study in Paris, France, and the C.V. Starr Fellowship. In addition to her doctorate, Nicole’s degrees in music include a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona, a master’s degree from the University of Michigan, and an artist diploma from The Russian Academy of Music. Her primary teachers have included ShruDeLi Ownbey, Carrol McLaughlin, Lynne Aspnes, Milda Agazarian, Isabelle Perrin, and Nancy Allen. Nicole recently added “Suzuki Parent” to her resume. She is honored to be the mother of four young boys, including an 8-year-old Suzuki violinist, 6-year-old Suzuki cellist, and a 4-year-old and 1-year-old who are eagerly waiting for their turns!

Piano

Piano at the Conference
By Ellen Berry, 2016 Conference Piano Coordinator

Plans are well underway for an exciting and enriching experience for Suzuki piano teachers and students at the SAA Conference next May in Minneapolis. Here are some highlights:

  • Watch our dynamic guest clinician Nelita True, Professor of Piano at Eastman School of Music, work with our senior students.
  • Learn from master teachers as they give demonstration lessons to Suzuki piano students of all ages and levels.
  • Become inspired by the many wonderful concerts given by students of all instruments, including a piano concerto!
  • Observe groups of three pianists being coached in unison playing of Suzuki pieces, and find out how you might organize a multi-piano concert in your community.
  • Attend fabulous sessions presented by experienced and enthusiastic colleagues on a wide variety of topics. New teaching strategies, working with parents, studio management, communication, ensemble repertoire, and improvisation are some of the subjects you may explore.
  • Connect with old friends and make new ones, sharing ideas, solutions to common teaching problems, your love of music, and even a few laughs!

I am sure you will return home from the conference feeling energized and eager to apply what you have learned to your own studio. See you at the conference!

Nelita True

Nelita True

Since Nelita True made her debut at age seventeen with the Chicago Symphony in Orchestra Hall and her New York debut with the Juilliard Orchestra in Avery Fisher Hall, her career has taken her to the major cities of Western and Eastern Europe, Indonesia, Korea, Japan, Mexico, Iceland, New Zealand, Brazil, Australia, Canada, India, and to Hong Kong and Singapore, as well as to all fifty states in America. She was a visiting professor at the St. Petersburg Conservatory in Russia, performing and conducting master classes and has been in the People’s Republic of China more than 20 times for recitals and master classes.

Ms. True has been described in Clavier Companion as “One of the world’s most sought-after and beloved pianist-teachers.” Her students have won top prizes in national and international competitions, and many of her former students now serve on the faculties of major schools around the U.S. and in other countries. Formerly Distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland, Ms. True is currently Professor of Music at the Eastman School of Music. She was awarded the Certificate of Merit by the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan, the Eisenhart Award for Excellence in Teaching at Eastman, the 2002 Achievement Award from the Music Teachers’ National Association, the Lifetime Achievement Award in Graduate Education from the University of Rochester, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Keyboard Pedagogy Conference (USA).

Ms. True has been a jury member for the China International Piano Competition (Beijing), the Queen Sonja International Piano Competition (Oslo), the National Piano Competition in Brazil, the Horowitz Competition (Kiev), the Concours de Musique in Canada, the PTNA (Tokyo), the Lev Vlassenko Competition in Australia, and the Gina Bachauer, New Orleans, Hilton Head, and William Kapell International Piano Competitions in the U.S.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Michigan as a student of Helen Titus, Ms. True went on to Juilliard to study with Sascha Gorodnitzki, and then earned the DMA with Leon Fleisher at the Peabody Conservatory. In Paris, she studied with Nadia Boulanger on a Fulbright grant.

S and H Productions of Kansas City produced a series of four videotapes, “Nelita True at Eastman,” featuring her performances, lectures, and teaching. These videos are currently being seen on five continents. She has been featured in articles in Clavier, Piano Today, The European Piano Teachers’ Journal, and is the subject of cover stories in Keyboard Companion and Clavier Companion.

Recorder

Flauta Dulce Takes Flight: Recorder Events at SAA Conference 2016
By Kathleen Schoen, 2016 Conference Recorder Co-Coordinator

Recorder at the SAA Conference

The Suzuki Recorder community is pleased and excited to announce that the world famous recorder player, recording artist, and teacher Paul Leenhouts will be our clinician for the 2016 SAA conference. Mr. Leenhouts is a founding member of the Amsterdam Loecki Stardust Quartet and the Royal Wind Music, as well as director of the contemporary music collective Blue Iguana. He is currently director of Early Music Studies at the University of North Texas and director of the International Baroque Institute at Longy in Cambridge, Massachusetts. We will take advantage of his wealth of knowledge and experience by presenting a mix of sessions at the conference for both students and teachers. Masterclasses with Paul Leenhouts are open to recorder students by audition. The Recorder Consort will combine students and teachers to perform a wide range of repertoire. Teacher sessions are planned to address the needs of the participating teachers, so if there is a topic that you would like to see addressed by Paul Leenhouts, please contact the Recorder Committee for this conference: Kathleen Schoen (Canada) , Mary Halvorsen Waldo (USA), and Luciana Castillo (Brazil).

Paul Leenhouts

Paul Leenhouts

Paul Leenhouts, recorder player, is director of Early Music Studies and the Baroque Orchestra at the University of North Texas. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam, where he was on the faculty as professor of recorder and historical development from 1993 to 2011. He is a founding member of the Amsterdam Loeki Stardust Quartet since 1978. In 2002 he became director of the contemporary music collective Blue Iguana. He is also a composer, arranger and editor of numerous works for chamber music ensembles. Mr. Leenhouts has recorded for Decca L’Oiseau-Lyre, Channel Classics, Vanguard, Lindoro and Berlin Classics. Two L’Oiseau-Lyre recordings received the prestigious Edison Award. In 1986 he initiated the Open Holland Recorder Festival Utrecht and from 1993 he has been director of the International Baroque Institute at Longy in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His special interest in renaissance consort repertoire led to the founding of The Royal Wind Music in 1997. As a conductor he won wide acclaim for Gabrieli, Guerrero and Morales productions at international early music festivals. In 2004 Mr. Leenhouts was elected president of the European Recorder Performers Society. As well as performing numerous concerts and coaching masterclasses within the early music field, he also regularly performs with contemporary and music theatre groups such as Musikfabrik, Nederlands Vocaal Laboratorium, ZT Hollandia and NT Gent.

Viola

Violists Coming Together in May!
By Rachel Fabulich, 2016 Conference Viola Coordinator

It’s going to be an exciting time at the 2016 SAA Conference, as Suzuki violists come together, “embracing the vision,” of a vibrant and rich viola community. Whether this is your first conference, or you have been to many, there will be something for everyone! Along with our amazing viola sessions on everything from working with multi-level group classes to hidden gems of viola repertoire, we will be joined this year by the world renowned violist Paul Coletti, who will work with some of our most advanced students.

The 2016 Conference will provide many opportunities for violists to meet with colleagues from both North and South America! For those who come from areas with few violists, the opportunity to collaborate and share is invaluable.

The violists will have much to offer this May! There will be a wide variety of sessions focused on how to nurture a rich viola community at home. In this rare opportunity to gather with a large community of Suzuki violists, ideas will be traded that benefit teachers and families, both new and experienced! And, of course, there will be opportunities to play and try out new music in viola ensembles—a favorite of many violists who attend Conference!

At the 2016 SAA Conference, we are excited to be joined by clinician, Paul Coletti. Mr. Coletti enjoys a prolific career as a performer, composer, professor, and recording artist. Since 2003 he has taught at the Colburn School in Los Angeles, California. Previously he taught at the Peabody Institute and at UCLA. A well-known clinician throughout the world, Mr. Coletti will offer our 2016 Viola Masterclasses.

The SAA 2016 Conference will provide a chance for you to catch up with old friends and meet new ones, while immersing yourself in a rich musical experience. We can’t wait to see you there!

Paul Coletti

Paul Coletti

Paul Coletti enjoys a prolific career as a performer, composer, professor, and recording artist. Since 2003 he has taught at the Colburn School. Previous appointments include the Peabody Institute, UCLA where he was Head of Chamber Music, and the University of Washington where at 25 he was Head of Strings. He has given master courses throughout the world.

As a soloist, Coletti has performed in every major European capital, frequently on the BBC, NHK, Classical Arts and NPR’s St Paul Sunday. He is a constant guest at numerous international music festivals, with orchestras including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the London Soloists, the Berlin and Hannover Radio symphonies, and the New Japan Philharmonic. Paul Coletti has performed at the Sydney Opera House, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Berlin Philharmonie, Kennedy Center, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Suntory Hall, and at historic sites such as the 4th-century San Miniato Cathedral in Florence. He has been a featured soloist at the International Viola Congresses of Chicago (where he performed on Paganini’s Stradivarius viola), Seattle, Tempe, Cincinnati, Los Angeles and Redlands, CA. Coletti’s conducting debut was with the New Japan Philharmonic orchestra in Tokyo.

A prolific recording artist, Coletti has been Grammy nominated, and has won accolades for his Hyperion recording English Music for Viola, which won best CD awards from Gramophone and BBC Music magazines and was named one of the 100 best CDs of all time. As a member of the Menuhin Festival Piano Quartet, their recording of Brahms piano quartets won the ’Forderpreiz’ in Zurich for Europe’s best chamber music recording of the year, and in Japan with his pioneering group Typhoon, 2 full length DVD’s were released, and three Sony CD’s reached No.1 in the classical charts.
In 2013 Fanfare Magazine wrote, “I don’t believe there is a better violist currently on the musical scene today, and few that can match the standard set by this artist.”

At 23, Paul Coletti made his debuts in New York, San Francisco and at his hometown Edinburgh Festival. The New York Times wrote, “The violist Paul Coletti is a remarkable musician with a distinct artistic personality that is entirely his own. Although Mr. Coletti has an impeccable technique, there is nothing ostentatious about his playing; the mastery is there and needs no promotional fanfare. He is an elegant artist who enhances all he plays.” The San Francisco Examiner wrote, “He reminds me of a few times when I had the privilege of hearing the great William Primrose at his best”.

Violin

Attention, Violinists!
By Ann Montzka-Smelser, Conference Violin Coordinator, and Robert Richardson, Assistant Violin Coordinator

We are thrilled to announce that Mr. Paul Kantor and Mr. Nicolas Kendall will be our Violin Clinicians for the 2016 SAA Biennual Teachers’ Conference! These amazing musicians are both known for their individuality and expressive creativity in teaching and performing. Their biographies are listed below but here are some conference collaborations we can anticipate!

Nicolas “Nick” Kendall along with his sister, Yumi Kendall, will be giving a keynote address. Yumi and Nicolas, who are both grandchildren of the late John Kendall, will be presenting, “Suzuki—past and present with a vision toward the future.”

We are excited to share that Nicolas will also be working with an Advanced Violin Performing Ensemble, which is new to the conference this year. Students know Nick best from his dynamic work in Tf3 (Time for Three) which we experienced at the 2012 SAA conference. It will be exciting to observe an open rehearsal with our students in the Performing Ensemble! Teachers will also share a conversational session with Nick about how to best set our students up for freedom of expression and bridge musical genres.

Mr. Kantor will be giving two different masterclasses for students with some time to chat with us and answer questions.

Mr. Kantor is a former pupil of Dorothy DeLay. “Kantor combines the analytical and technical approach of the DeLay school with a probing intellect,” says cellist-teacher Anthony Elliot. “He’s in search of an individualized musical expression that is personally tailored to each particular student.”

Kantor was quoted in an article of Strings Magazine: “I’m more an experienced guide who helps provoke the right questions. The minute you provide an answer, it closes the door. It’s an end. Asking questions is the way to grow.”

Mr. Kantor says there is a special place in his heart for Suzuki, he was a Suzuki Dad when his son, Timothy, studied with Judy (Yamada) Blank in Michigan.

Cannot wait to see you all in Minneapolis this May!

Paul Kantor

Paul Kantor

Paul Kantor is currently the Sally Shepherd Perkins Professor of Violin at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University having previously served as the Eleanor H. Biggs Distinguished Professor of Violin at the Cleveland Institute of Music. He received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Juilliard studying violin with Dorothy DeLay and chamber music with Robert Mann. For thirteen years he served as Chair of the String Department at the University of Michigan and has taught at the Juilliard School, the New England Conservatory and Yale University. He continues as Artist in Residence at the Glenn Gould School of Music/ Royal Conservatory of Music since his appointment in 2008. Along with his son, violinist Timothy Kantor, he founded and directs the Gabriel Del Orbe Violin Program in the Dominican Republic.

Additionally, he has presented master classes at the Starling-Delay Symposium, Indiana University, the Eastman School, the University of Southern California and the New World Symphony, among others. His students consistently win major awards at important violin competitions including the Indianapolis, Montreal, Stulberg, Buenos Aires, Klein and Fischoff.

For the past 37 years he has been on the Artist/Faculty of the Aspen Music Festival & School where he has been concertmaster of both the Festival Orchestra and the Chamber Symphony. He has performed as soloist with numerous symphony orchestras as well as serving as concertmaster of the New Haven Symphony, the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra and the Great Lakes Festival Orchestra. Kantor was a member of The New York and Lenox string quartets, the Berkshire Chamber Players and the National Musical Arts Chamber Ensemble in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Kantor has performed the world premieres of Dan Welcher’s Violin Concerto, (subsequently recorded with Larry Rachleff and Symphony II) as well as John Corigliano’s “Red Violin Caprices”. His recordings can be found on the labels of Equilibrium, CRI, Delos and Mark Records. In 2014 he was honored with the Artist Teacher Award from the American String Teachers Association.

He is married to pianist Virginia Weckstrom.

Nick Kendall

Nick Kendall

Image by Teatro del Lago in Frutillar, Chile

Nicolas (Nick for short) Kendall connects people through music. He picked up his first violin at the age of three. With an insatiable appetite for diversity of expression he went to the streets of Washington D.C. to play trash cans for lunch money as a teenager. A couple of years later, he was forming pick-up rock bands at Curtis Institute between concert debuts at the most prestigious halls in the world.

By this point in his career, among numerous other venues Nick has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, BBC Proms in London, Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Hamer Hall in Melbourne, Ravinia Festival, Sydney Opera House, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Teatro del Lago in Frutillar, Chile and this season he will add the Hyogo Performing Arts Center in Nishinomiya, Japan to the list of the stages he is thankful to play on. His professional collaborations include such artists as Joshua Bell, Branford Marsalis, Christoph Eschenbach, Joshua Radin, Keith Lockhart, Alisa Weilerstein, Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, William Bolcom, Jake Shimabukuro, Chris Brubeck, Jennifer Higdon, Kenji Bunch and many other friends and colleagues.

Nick is one of our generation’s most persuasive champions for bringing new audiences to concert halls. Irreverent, funny, and relentless, Nick has become a force for communicating through music, on stage and off. His work is based on the simple idea that the energy you exude greatly impacts the relationships you build.

Nick’s leadership comes from a long personal history with collective action. Years ago, Nick gathered his friends to form a band whose direction and energy stems out of the power of cooperation, now the critically acclaimed East Coast Chamber Orchestra. His genre-bending trio, Time for Three, or TF3, creates new communities of audiences who otherwise might not participate in the performing arts, and this year special TV feature “Time for Three LIVE!” covering one of TF3 concerts won an Emmy Award (the feature produced and recorded by the US Public Broadcasting Service).

Trained in the Suzuki method, which his grandfather, John Kendall, brought from Japan to America in the 1960s, Nick continues the teaching tradition. As a caretaker of his craft, he is passing on the vitality of music to a new generation.

Conductors & Performers

Suzuki Youth Orchestra of the Americas

Headshot ED

Emmett Drake

Originally from Long Island, New York, Emmett Drake is excited to be appearing with the SYOA for the third time. Mr. Drake is currently the Director of Suzuki Orchestras at the Hartt School in West Hartford, CT, where he conducts five youth orchestras and teaches composition. Emmett is also the Director of Orchestras at Hall and Conard High Schools in West Hartford, CT. Additionally, he is frequently engaged as a guest conductor/clinician. Recent appearances include the Hartford Symphony Orchestra (CT), the Suzuki Youth Orchestra of the Americas (MN), CMEA Eastern Regional Festival (CT), the Farmington Valley Symphony Orchestra (CT), CMEA Southern Regional Festival (CT), Fairfield County String Festival (CT), and Westchester All County Youth Orchestra (NY). Emmett is also active in musical theater, having served as music director/conductor for over 75 unique productions since 2006, working with high schools and various theaters across the northeast, including the Playhouse on Park, Hartford Stage, West Hartford Summer Arts Festival, and Hartt Summer Vocal Institute: Music Theatre Intensive. He currently resides in West Hartford, CT.


Marilyn Kesler

Marilyn Kesler

Marilyn Kesler has recently retired after forty-two years as a teacher in the Okemos, Michigan Public Schools teaching 7th and 8th Grade strings and three high school orchestras. She is continues to be the director of the Community Education Suzuki program where she teaches Suzuki cello lessons.

Ms. Kesler began her teaching career as a general music teacher in Alton, Illinois; while there, she earned a Masters Degree in Music Education at Southern Illinois University where she specialized in the adaptation of the Suzuki Violin Method for the cello with then professor, John Kendall. Her undergraduate degree in Music Education was from Indiana University where she studied cello with Janos Starker and Leopold Terraspulsky.

Marilyn just completed a term as Chair of the Board of the Suzuki Association of the Americas Board of Directors. Past offices include President of Michigan Chapter of the American String Teachers Association, Secretary of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, Chairman of the SAA Cello Committee, Public School Committee, and Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association Vice-President of Orchestra Activities. In 1990, she was the first recipient of the ASTA National School Educator Award which is presented to the outstanding public school music teacher in the US. In 1998, she received the “Distinguished Service Award” from SAA. Other honors include, MSBOA, MASTA, and Indiana University Alumni “Teacher of the Year”.

Suzuki Young Artist String Ensemble

Kirsten Marshall

Kirsten Marshall

Kirsten Marshall has inspired students across the Americas with her boundless enthusiasm and passion for making great music for more than fifteen years. Ms. Marshall is director of Orchestral Programs and a violin instructor at Ithaca Talent Education in Ithaca, NY. During the summer months, she is widely sought after as a conductor and clinician for her commitment to artistic excellence and dynamic ability to engage students.

Ms. Marshall received bachelor and master of music degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) with majors in violin performance and Suzuki pedagogy. Ms. Marshall also holds a bachelor of science degree in music education from Case Western Reserve University, with an emphasis in strings. Her conducting studies were with David Einfeldt (Hartt School of Music, Connecticut), Carl Topilow and Louis Lane (CIM). She is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda, the National Music Honor Society.

In 1998, 2012 and 2014, Ms. Marshall conducted the Suzuki Youth Orchestra of the Americas, and in 2008 and 2010, she conducted the faculty orchestra for piano soloist at the Suzuki Association of the Americas conference. An avid supporter of contemporary music, Ms. Marshall conducted and produced two premiere string orchestra pieces that appeared on the 2002 recording Bach to the Future. She is an active performer in the Ithaca area and holds the David and Lesli Sagan Chair in the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, Ithaca’s professional ensemble. In 2003, she co-commissioned and premiered a sonata for violin and piano by Robert Paterson. Her love of contemporary music is further demonstrated though her own original compositions for string orchestras.

Chamber Music Masterclasses

Erin Keefe, Clinician
Minnesota Orchestra Concertmaster Erin Keefe will conduct the masterclasses for chamber music ensembles to play at the Conference. We are thrilled that she is available to participate in this special student event which will feature string quartets and other ensembles.
See Erin Keefe’s bio below.

Advanced Violin Performing Ensemble

Nicolas Kendall, Coach
A new and exciting event this year, the Advanced Violin Performing Ensemble will be under the direction of Nicholas Kendall. A small group of advanced violinists will be selected by audition to participate in the group. The lineup of special repertoire selected for exploration by the ensemble and the group rehearsals will provide observation opportunities for teachers hoping to refresh their upper level group class teaching ideas. A Sunday event will feature Nicholas directing a special performance of the group.
See Nicolas Kendall’s bio below.

Minnesota Orchestra Performance

Erin Keefe

Erin Keefe

Erin Keefe
Soloist

American violinist Erin Keefe has been hailed as “an impressive violin soloist” by The New York Times and has established a reputation as a compelling artist who combines exhilarating temperament and fierce integrity. She was recently named Concertmaster of the Minnesota Orchestra and was awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2006 as well as the 2009 Pro Musicis International Award. She was also awarded the Grand Prizes in the Valsesia Music International Violin Competition (Italy), the Torun International Violin Competition (Poland), the Schadt Competition and the Corpus Christi International String Competition, and was the Silver Medalist in the Carl Nielsen, Sendai (Japan) and Gyeongnam (Korea) International Violin Competitions, resulting in performances and immediate re-engagements in the US, Europe and Asia.

Ms. Keefe has appeared in recent seasons as soloist with orchestras such as the Minnesota Orchestra, the New Mexico Symphony, the New York City Ballet Orchestra, the Korean Symphony Orchestra, the Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, the Sendai Philharmonic and the Gottingen Symphony Orchestra and has given recitals throughout the United States, Austria, Germany, Korea, Poland, Japan and Denmark.

Among the leading chamber musicians of her generation, Ms. Keefe has been an Artist Member of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center since 2010 after previously being a member of The Chamber Music Society Two program from 2006-2009. She has been featured on “Live from Lincoln Center” three times with the Society, performing works by Brahms, Schoenberg, Bach and Corelli. Ms. Keefe performs regularly with the Brooklyn and Boston Chamber Music Societies.

Ms. Keefe has collaborated with many leading artists of today including the Emerson String Quartet, Roberto and Andres Diaz, Edgar Meyer, Gary Graffman, Richard Goode, David Shifrin, David Soyer, Colin Carr, Leon Fleisher and William Preucil. She also performed on a program with Michael Tilson Thomas premiering his own chamber music at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall. Her recording credits include Schoenberg’s Second String Quartet with Ida Kavafian, Paul Neubauer, Fred Sherry, and Jennifer Welch-Babidge for Robert Craft and the Naxos Label, recordings of the Dvorak Terzetto and the Dvorak Piano Quartet in E-flat with David Finckel and Wu Han for the CMS Studio Recordings label as well as live performances of the Bartok Contrasts, Dvorak Piano Quintet, Mozart E-flat Piano Quartet, Respighi’s Il Tramonto and Haydn’s Arianna a Naxos recorded for Deutsche Grammophon with Menahem Pressler, Gary Hoffman, Ani Kavafian and Ewa Podles. In January of 2010, Ms. Keefe released her first solo cd including works by Mendelssohn, Schumann, Ravel, Sibelius, Lutoslawski and Hindemith recorded with pianist Anna Polonsky. Ms. Keefe’s festival appearances have included the Marlboro Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Mainly Mozart, Music Academy of the West, Music from Angel Fire, Ravinia and the Seattle, OK Mozart, Mimir, Bravo! Vail Valley, Colorado College, Skaneateles, Salt Bay, Music in the Vineyards and Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festivals.

Ms. Keefe earned a Master of Music Degree from The Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Music Degree from The Curtis Institute of Music. Her teachers included Ronald Copes, Ida Kavafian, Arnold Steinhardt, Philip Setzer, Philipp Naegele and Teri Einfeldt. She performs on a Nicolo Gagliano violin from 1732.

See the interview with Erin Keefe

Keynote Speakers

Ani Patel
Keynote Presentation
“Hidden connections between music and language processing in the brain”

Ani Patel

Ani Patel

Aniruddh (Ani) Patel is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Tufts University. As a cognitive neuroscientist, he conducts research that focuses on the relationship between music and language, using this interface to explore the mental foundations of both of these distinctively human abilities. He has used a range of methods in his research, including human brain imaging, theoretical analyses, acoustic research, and comparative work with other species. Patel has served as president of the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (www.musicperception.org), and has published over 60 research articles and a scholarly book, Music, Language and the Brain (2008, Oxford University Press), which won an ASCAP Deems Taylor award. In 2009 he received the Music Has Power Award from the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function in New York City. In 2015 he released a set of 18 lectures on music and the brain aimed at a general audience, produced by The Great Courses: http://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/music-and-the-brain.html

Nick Kendall

Nick Kendall

Image by Teatro del Lago in Frutillar, Chile

Nicolas Kendall
Co-Keynote Presentation with Yumi Kendall
“Suzuki: past-present-future. Anecdotes, personal connections and vision for the future”

Nicolas (Nick for short) Kendall connects people through music. He picked up his first violin at the age of three. With an insatiable appetite for diversity of expression he went to the streets of Washington D.C. to play trash cans for lunch money as a teenager. A couple of years later, he was forming pick-up rock bands at Curtis Institute between concert debuts at the most prestigious halls in the world.

By this point in his career, among numerous other venues Nick has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, BBC Proms in London, Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Hamer Hall in Melbourne, Ravinia Festival, Sydney Opera House, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Teatro del Lago in Frutillar, Chile and this season he will add the Hyogo Performing Arts Center in Nishinomiya, Japan to the list of the stages he is thankful to play on. His professional collaborations include such artists as Joshua Bell, Branford Marsalis, Christoph Eschenbach, Joshua Radin, Keith Lockhart, Alisa Weilerstein, Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, William Bolcom, Jake Shimabukuro, Chris Brubeck, Jennifer Higdon, Kenji Bunch and many other friends and colleagues.

Nick is one of our generation’s most persuasive champions for bringing new audiences to concert halls. Irreverent, funny, and relentless, Nick has become a force for communicating through music, on stage and off. His work is based on the simple idea that the energy you exude greatly impacts the relationships you build.

Nick’s leadership comes from a long personal history with collective action. Years ago, Nick gathered his friends to form a band whose direction and energy stems out of the power of cooperation, now the critically acclaimed East Coast Chamber Orchestra. His genre-bending trio, Time for Three, or TF3, creates new communities of audiences who otherwise might not participate in the performing arts, and this year special TV feature “Time for Three LIVE!” covering one of TF3 concerts won an Emmy Award (the feature produced and recorded by the US Public Broadcasting Service).

Trained in the Suzuki method, which his grandfather, John Kendall, brought from Japan to America in the 1960s, Nick continues the teaching tradition. As a caretaker of his craft, he is passing on the vitality of music to a new generation.

Yumi Kendall

Yumi Kendall

Yumi Kendall
Co-Keynote Presentation with Nicolas Kendall

Ms. Kendall joined The Philadelphia Orchestra in September 2004 as Assistant Principal Cellist upon graduation from Curtis, where she studied with David Soyer and Peter Wiley.
Ms. Kendall began studying cello at the age of five following the Suzuki method; upon completion of the Suzuki method, continued to study with David Hardy. At 16, Ms. Kendall made her solo debut with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center.

Ms. Kendall’s festival participation includes Music from Angel Fire, Verbier, Marlboro, touring with Musicians from Marlboro, Taos, Kingston, and the Emerson String Quartet Workshop. Ms. Kendall is cellist of the Dryden String Quartet, which formed in 2001, and has performed at the Dutch and German Embassies, Kennedy Center, Reading Chamber Music Society, Schneider Concert Series, Curtis Alumni recital series, and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society.

Ms. Kendall has served on the faculties of the National Orchestral Institute, New York State School for Orchestral Studies, Philadelphia International Music Festival, Brevard Music Center, and Miami Summer Music Festival; serves as mentor for the Curtis Institute’s Community Artists Program, and maintains a private teaching studio. Ms. Kendall was the 2013 recipient of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Kuhn Award, given annually to “the member of the Philadelphia Orchestra who has shown ability and enterprise of such character as to enhance the standards and reputation of The Philadelphia Orchestra”.

Winifred Crock

Winifred Crock

Image by Winifred Crock

Winifred Crock
Keynote Presentation
“The Evolution and Revolution of Talent Education: the Past, the Present and the Future.”

Winifred Crock was the Director of Orchestras at Parkway Central High School for over twenty-five years, and has maintained a private violin studio in suburban St. Louis, Missouri for far longer. During her tenure, Parkway Central High was selected as a GRAMMY Gold Signature school, and the orchestra program garnered much acclaim. Mrs. Crock has been named the Missouri ASTA Private Studio Teacher of the Year, the Missouri ASTA Secondary String Teacher of the Year, the St. Louis Symphony Educator of the Year, and the NFHS Outstanding Music Educator of Missouri. Mrs. Crock is also the recipient of the University of Rochester’s Singer Prize for excellence in secondary teaching and the 2014 ASTA Elizabeth Green National School Educator Award.

In demand as a clinician, lecturer and conductor, Mrs. Crock has lectured at numerous music conferences including Midwest, NAFME, ASTA, and SAA conferences and has been the featured string clinician at festivals and conferences in over 20 states, and abroad. In addition to music degrees from SIU Edwardsville and Kent State University, Mrs. Crock graduated from the Suzuki Talent Education Institute in Matsumoto, Japan under the tutelage of Shinichi Suzuki and is a certified Kodály instructor through the Kodály Center of America in Boston. Mrs. Crock, with Mr. William Dick and Dr. Laurie Scott, are the co-authors of Learning Together: Sequential Repertoire for Solo Strings or String Ensembles, Alfred Music. They were the recipients of the Suzuki Association of the Americas 2011 Community Learning Award for their work in developing the Suzuki Method in schools. Mrs. Crock is currently completing a beginning reading series called Pattern Play for Strings: A Sequential Introduction to Reading Music, Forrester Press.

Mrs. Crock is dedicated to the betterment of music education for all children. She is currently serving on the SAA Board of Directors.

Dalcroze

Jeremy Dittus

Jeremy Dittus

Jeremy Dittus Jeremy Dittus enjoys a career as a pianist, theorist, and Dalcroze Education Specialist. An avid recitalist, he has performed solo and chamber programs and presented Dalcroze masterclasses throughout the United States, Europe and South East Asia. He currently directs the Dalcroze School of the Rockies Dalcroze Academy teacher-training center at Metropolitan State University of Denver. He currently serves on l’Collège de l’Institut Jaques-Dalcroze.

Dr. Dittus is the founder and director of the Dalcroze School of the Rockies in Denver, Colorado. The DSR offers Dalcroze Education classes (Eurhythmics and Rhythmic-Solfège) for children (pre-kindergarten through high school), adult enrichment classes, full time study toward the Dalcroze Certificate/License, in addition to post-License/pre-Diplôme courses. He recently has published books on Dalcroze Education: Embodying Music: A Textbook for Dalcroze Teacher Training, and five books that correspond to the Rhythmic-Solfège youth program in place at the Dalcroze School of the Rockies.