Dr. Mary Harrah

Viola, Violin Teacher

Mary Harrah

SAA Member


Phoenix, AZ

I currently teach at Price and Guadalupe in Tempe (85282), and at Thomas and 48th St. in Phoenix (85008; 85018). Please contact me for more detailed information as to availability.

I have maintained a private violin and viola studio for 20 years, teaching students of all ages throughout the greater Phoenix area. My Suzuki training has been with Beverly De LaBretonne, Susan Kempter, and Nancy Lokken. I am also Instructor of Viola and Violin at Mesa Community College in Mesa, Arizona. Previously, I taught both elementary and high school strings for eleven years in the public schools, and was also Director of Orchestras at Arizona School for the Arts for two years.

My students have participated in the Metropolitan Youth Symphony orchestras, the Phoenix Youth Symphony orchestras, the Arizona All-Regional orchestras, and the Arizona All-State orchestra. They have gone on to study music performance, music education, and music therapy at Arizona State University, the University of Arizona, and Northern Arizona University, and are currently working as performing musicians, classroom music teachers, and music therapists throughout the greater Phoenix area. My students have also gone on to study and work in a wide variety of non-music fields, including theater, doctoral studies in anthropology, the medical field, education, studio art, history, and basketball analytics.

I am an active performing musician as well as being a dedicated teacher. I have performed frequently as a substitute musician with the Phoenix Symphony and Arizona Opera since 2005. I am a member of the AIMS in Graz Festival Orchestra in Graz, Austria, during the month of July. I have also performed with the Tucson Symphony. I am a former member of the Brevard Music Center Festival Orchestra, and the National Orchestral Institute orchestra, as well as being a participant at the Musicorda Summer String Festival for two summers.

I earned both the Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees as a student of William Magers at Arizona State University. My past teachers include Ed Gazouleas, Michelle LaCourse, and Carol Rodland. My BA, in History and Russian, was earned from Wellesley College. Pursuing my interest in Russian, I have taught Russian at the high school level, and at Arizona State University. In 2014, I was a Fulbright-Hays scholar in Moscow, Russia, as part of a program for teachers of Russian. (My project focused on the lives of musicians in Moscow today.) I lived in St. Petersburg, Russia, for three years, where I studied music, worked for the St. Petersburg Times, and became fluent in Russian.