Mrs. Dana E. Smith

Piano, Cello Teacher

Dana Smith

SAA Member


Bethesda, MD

Dana has been teaching music for 25 years, to both children and adults of all levels and diverse cultural backgrounds. She enjoys using music as a tool to improve her students’ confidence and believes in a well-rounded musical education that introduces students to performance, theory, history, improvisation and composition. Dana is the parent of a child with special needs, and enjoys teaching students with special needs. She started her piano studies in the Suzuki method as a 6 year old, and returned to Suzuki as an experienced teacher, receiving training and teaching Suzuki piano for the last 6 years. She began studying cello in high school, and recently decided to start teaching Suzuki cello. Dana welcomes beginning or transfer Suzuki piano students of all ages, in Books 1-5. Since 2020 Dana has been teaching both online and in person, and welcomes virtual students in Book 2 or higher from all regions of the world, and in person students in the Washington DC metro area. Dana welcomes beginning cello students to in person lessons. She loves bringing the joy of music to her students through Suzuki studies, and believes that music brings us together.

A US citizen, Dana grew up in Nepal and India. She continued to explore the world, living in Burkina Faso, Belgium and Bahrain and traveling in the Middle East and South Asia. Dana received her Bachelor’s Degree from Mills College in California, studying piano with Goodwin Sammeland cello with Lucinda Breed. She earned her Masters degree at the University of Southern California, where she studied Keyboard Collaborative Arts with Dr. Alan Smith. Throughout her education Dana was recognized for her scholarship and excellence in performance. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa scholarship society, and Pi Kappa Lambda music scholarship society.

Since completing her education, in addition to teaching Dana has performed as a solo and collaborative pianist, as a cellist in community orchestras and as a singer in choirs around the world. Dana enjoys bringing the music of lesser known composers to audiences, especially music by female composers. In addition to singing in many choral ensembles, she has been accompanist and conductor of both adult and children’s choirs. She is a member of the Music Teachers National Association and the Suzuki Association of the Americas.