I grew up with music always around, starting with a church community always singing at the top of their lungs, watching operas on PBS with my mother, and playing guitar in a bluegrass band. Experiencing music as a way to build and live within a community had a great impact. Bringing the same kinds of opportunities to studio families is a core principle of my teaching.
I received a B.M. Performance with Distinction from St. Olaf College, studying with Kay Sahlin, and my M.M. Performance with Lorna McGhee and Brenda Fedorak at the University of British Columbia. While at UBC, I taught and designed the curriculum for the flute portion of the Woodwind Methods course,.
My introduction to Suzuki philosophy came from attending a Suzuki Early Childhood music class after my first daughter was born and I began Suzuki Teacher Training. the following summer. I have since completed Suzuki training up through Book Ten and participate in further pedagogy training throughout the year. Now with my two girls both learning an instrument, I also participate in lessons from the parent side in daily practice.
Students in the studio are regularly selected for honor bands, including All-State, chosen as principal players in their sections, participate in audition-only ensembles such as the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies and Minnesota Junior Winds, and have been accepted as music majors upon graduation. Whatever their individual goals, I encourage them to seek out new musical experiences and approach music as communication and connection. My favorite moments of teaching are when students arrive excited about a new piece they've found or make a musical holiday card for their family and especially when they realize they really have something of value to give to themselves and others through their flute.