Ava Gehlen-Williams

Violin, Viola Teacher

Ava Gehlen-Williams

SAA Member


Seattle, WA
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Ava Gehlen-Williams is a private violin teacher based in Seattle, Washington and trained in the Suzuki method. Ava is an alumna and teaching assistant at the Pizzichemi Violin Studio and is currently also a teaching artist at Yale University working with students attending New Haven public schools. She currently studies music at Yale University and regularly performs in solo, chamber, and orchestral genres. She has had leadership roles in many orchestras, including serving as concertmaster at the Chloé Trevor Music Academy and with the Cascade Youth Symphony Orchestras. She has also performed with Saratoga Orchestra, Seattle Collaborative Orchestra, Yale Symphony Orchestra, Academy Chamber Orchestra, and WMEA All-State Orchestra. She has served as concertmaster of the Edmonds-Woodway Philharmonic and performed as soloist twice as part of the Masterworks concerto competition. Ava’s primary teachers include Dr. Sarah Pizzichemi, Kyung Yu, Jan Coleman, Margaret Pressley, Erica Raum, Hal Grossman, Nicholas Tavani, Aeolus Quartet, Arianna String Quartet, Harlem String Quartet, Jupiter Quartet, and Skyros Quartet. She has performed in masterclasses for Cho-Liang Lin, Alexander Kerr, Mimi Zweig, Ann Setzer, Danielle Belen, Chloé Trevor, Keng-Yuen Tseng, Elbert Tsai, and Piotr Milewski. In the summer of 2022, Ava attended Madeline Island Chamber Music Festival and the Domaine Forget de Charlevoix, studying with Mark Steinberg, Jonathan Swartz, Violaine Melançon, Erica Raum, Min-Jeong Koh, Carolyn Huebl, Ilmar Gavilan, Nelson Lee, Julia Sakharova, and Oliver Charlier.

Ava maintains her private studio and has taught violin and viola students continually since 2014. She has significant pedagogy training and shadowing experience in Suzuki and traditional pedagogy. Her primary mentors include Jan Coleman, Dr. Sarah Pizzichemi of the Skyros Quartet, Dr. Laurie Scott at The University of Texas at Austin, Ann Montzka-Smelser, and Liz Arbus.

Ava is also a co-founder of Evergreen Music Press, based in Seattle Washington. Evergreen Music Press publishes a variety of materials with the aim of broadening the pedagogical canon for string education. More information about this can be found at evergreenmusicpress.com.

In her free time, Ava enjoys reading, hiking in the Pacific Northwest, and plant-based nutrition. Ava performs on a 2010 David Van Zandt violin and a 2022 Ole Kanestrom bow.