History of Suzuki method in Canada

Kathleen Schoen said: Jun 13, 2012
Kathleen SchoenTeacher Trainer
Institute Director
Suzuki Association Member
Flute, Recorder, Suzuki Early Childhood Education
Edmonton, AB
25 posts

When the Canadian teachers met at the SAA conference last month, I learned many interesting things that I had never heard before about the development of Suzuki method in Canada. I was particularly intrigued to hear about a French language Suzuki-based method that was developed in Quebec, (I think it was back in the 60s?) at around the same time as Tom Rolston arranged for the Japanese teachers from Matsumoto to come to Edmonton. I would love to know more about this. I also understood that there is also a French translation of Nurtured by Love. How could I get a copy of this?

Kelly Williamson said: Jun 14, 2012
Kelly WilliamsonTeacher Trainer Flute, Suzuki Early Childhood Education
Cambridge, ON
262 posts

If you contact Melanie Grenier, she can hook you up with a copy, I’m sure. Is this Jean Cousineau’s method that was referred to? So sorry I missed the meeting—sounds like it was very informative!

Kelly

Paule Barsalou said: Jun 14, 2012
Paule BarsalouTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Guelph, ON
14 posts

The Sound Post carries the French edition of Nurtured by Love. It was published in Europe. There are two methods in Quebec that were started by two different men who visited Dr. Suzuki in the 60s. Claude Létourneau in Québec City and Jean Cousineau in Montréal.

Paule Barsalou

Sandrine said: Jun 15, 2012
 Piano
Orist, France
10 posts

hello,
i am a french teacher piano, i have the french book of Suzuki story, Nurtured by Love, in french, it is a french edition. I can send you one. i am on Canada.
best regard
Sandlaur

Sandlaur

Wendy said: Jul 7, 2012
Wendy Seravalle-Smith
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Cello, Violin
Thornhill, ON
117 posts

Hello all
I could not make it to Minneapolis this year but so glad to hear of these developments. I have been busy with RCM examining then will be busy teaching at two institutes. I have been working, albeit slowly, on history of Suzuki in Ontario—I have written some articles for the SAO newsletter and must recommit to keep going with that but if one person from each province took up the cause to trace their own province’s history, then we could have a very comprehensive national Suzuki history. More to come ….

Kiyoko said: Jan 26, 2013
 84 posts

Viola4me,

I know this is an old thread but are you going to gather info on the fiddling side of Suzuki violin in Canada too? I’m an American, but when I was young, I attended Guelph Suzuki Workshops. We had friends living in Guelph at the time. I was always fascinating at the rich music culture provided by the casual addition of fiddling music to the Canadian student’s repertoire, which I’m assuming which originates from Canada’s maritime heritage. Now in the US, there is the whole debate going on between the O’Connor fiddling based method and the Suzuki method I find a bit silly. I’m hoping if you write of the fiddling in the Canadian Suzuki programs, that maybe some of the friction will be alleviated. They co-existed beautifully in what I saw in the Canadian students education. To tell you the truth, I was always a bit jealous, but I did eventually learn play a rendition of Devil’s Dream. I’m thinking of starting my young son on the violin when he is ready and I hope he has the opportunity to be exposed to all sorts of playing styles.

Wendy said: Jan 27, 2013
Wendy Seravalle-Smith
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Cello, Violin
Thornhill, ON
117 posts

Hello there Kiyoko
Thanks for your great memories of your time in Guelph. I am not an expert on fiddling music or the history of fiddling music in Canada or its connection with Suzuki. However, from my experience, I can give you a couple of thoughts and perspectives. First of all, I think there are lots of Suzuki teachers that add fiddling music to their students’ repertoire and certainly it is great to add as part of the group experience. It adds to enjoyment plus it is certainly full of techniques such as double stopping and string crossing. I would also go one step further that any other tradition music or World music that an individual teacher is familiar with is great to share in their studio. Fiddling music is certainly not just a Maritime rooted tradition. There are fabulous fiddle clubs all over Canada and the United States and many other countries have their traditional music styles. I have enjoyed “fiddle” music from Sweden by composer Ost. At the Montreal Suzuki Institute, it has been an elective for many years to have Haitian Fiddling. It is also not just a violin based style as others have done so on cello and viola (sometimes affectionately called “low string fiddling”). Also it is many times an elective at other Suzuki Institutes throughout North America. Ithaca Suzuki Institute also offers fiddling. In addition, the local Suzuki students can often been seen and heard playing fiddle music and their Suzuki repertoire at the Ithaca Farmers’ Market.
As for the controversy between O’Connor and Suzuki, I really do not know anything about it. I just let Suzuki philosophy speak for itself.
As for writing a history, as stated above, I would not know all the connections.
Bottom line, from my perspective, is that each of us should feel free and encouraged to add local and world music traditions to their studio—as it fits in with the level and comfort of students.
I am sure others can contribute their knowledge, experiences and what they add into their studio along these styles.

Sophia said: Jan 27, 2013
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Vancouver, BC
16 posts

Fiddling is a great way to students to get that sixteenth notes working with their bow arms…although I don’t have a specific request to teach fiddling all that often, one could use the repertoire to complement what you are already teaching in their bowing technique. Check out Joanne Martin’s Magic Carpet series with CD, this is very helpful for students because they focus on musicality rather than the left hand which can be tricky for some.

Paule Barsalou said: Jan 28, 2013
Paule BarsalouTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Guelph, ON
14 posts

The Suzuki Talent Education Program in St John’s Newfoundland has one of the Canadian experts on fiddling as their artistic director, Christina Smith. Their program includes fiddle classes as well as group classes for all students. It is wonderful how they have integrated the two traditions and encouraged their students to preserve this rich musical heritage from their beautiful province.

Paule Barsalou

Paule Barsalou said: Jan 28, 2013
Paule BarsalouTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Guelph, ON
14 posts

On another topic, the Suzuki String School of Guelph is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. We will have a 40th anniversary weekend celebration on the weekend of April 26-27. There will be an alumni concert and a gala dinner and silent auction on Saturday, April 26 at St Georges Anglican Church and a mass concert of current and alumni students on Sunday, April 27 at 3 pm at the River Run Centre. Of course you are all invited to come. Keep checking our Facebook page and our website for details.

Paule Barsalou

Laurie Maetche said: Jan 28, 2013
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Guitar, Piano, Cello, Viola
10 posts

I have done fiddling longer than suzuki and there are some good resources in each province. Most provinces have a society and they have camps similar to suzuki and the play-ins are called jams or jamborees where traditional fiddle tunes are played all together. I find that the fiddling is very multi generational so that adds another cool aspect for the student.
For more information The Alberta Society of Fiddlers
I have found that suzuki students do very well at fidddle camps, so keep an open mind and enjoy whatever journey your students lead you on.

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