Christopher Holmes

Violin Teacher

Christopher Holmes

SAA Member


Rochester, NY

Christopher Holmes began the study of violin at the age of 4 with Mary Cay Neal, founder and director of the Buffalo Suzuki Strings. At age 11, he joined the Buffalo Suzuki Strings Advanced Ensemble and toured to Australia, Italy, the southern states of America, Chile and Peru. He performed as a soloist in the final two tours.

Mr. Holmes completed a bachelor’s degree in violin performance at the Crane School of Music where he studied with John Lindsey and Ioan Harea. Following this, he completed a master’s degree in violin performance at the University of Maryland where he studied with Dr. James Stern. Mr. Holmes then completed a master’s degree in music education at the Crane School of Music.

During his time at the University of Maryland, Mr. Holmes began the study of Dr. Suzuki’s teaching methods with Rhonda Cole. He continued Suzuki teacher training for books 1 through 10 with Carrie Reuning-Hummel, Edward Kreitman, Mary Cay Neal, Kimberly Meier-Sims, and Mark Bjork.

Mr. Holmes has performed extensively. He has performed as a soloist and is currently a section player with the Ars Nova Chamber Orchestra in Buffalo, NY under the direction of Marylouise Nanna. He was the first violinist in 11 years to win the Crane School of Music concerto competition. He has also performed in chamber ensembles in Prague at the Ameropa Chamber Festival, at the Milwaukee Chamber Music Festival, and with the Lake Effect String Quartet in Buffalo.

Mr. Holmes has been a faculty member at the Buffalo Suzuki Strings where he taught students ages 3 to 18 in group and private instruction. He then taught in the public schools in the Rochester, NY area for three years where he was responsible for both small group instruction and orchestra lessons. Subsequently Mr. Holmes moved to Pittsburgh, PA where he was a faculty member with the Pittsburgh Music Academy. He was responsible for private and group instruction including leading all violin group classes at one location. Throughout this time, Mr. Holmes has worked as a master-class teacher, quartet coach, and orchestra director in Buffalo. Mr. Holmes has also taught at the Ithaca Suzuki Summer Institute as a faculty member.

In 2013, Mr. Holmes founded the Rochester Suzuki Strings based in Rochester, NY. The mission of Rochester Suzuki Strings is to uphold the legacy of Shinichi Suzuki’s teachings by providing a safe, nurturing environment where every child can foster a love of learning, a standard of excellence, and a strong sense of community.