String Instrument Specialists
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String Instrument Specialists offers a wide variety of clinics and other professional services for string teachers, school administrators, and students. Many of these clinic topics can be custom-tailored to a specific target audience or time period. 

Is your school district considering starting a string program or making improvements to existing offerings? We provide consulting services to school districts and administrators to help insure successful program offerings. We are also able to provide inservice activities for music teachers on a single-session or ongoing basis. Assistance is also available to administrators to aid in teacher and program evaluation and improvement.

CLINIC TOPICS FOR TEACHERS   (One to two-hour sessions)

Elementary String Class Organization
        Presents a method handling elementary string instruction in short, daily, heterogeneous classes. Illustrates how string instruction can fit effectively within currently popular concepts of school organization.

Teaching Elementary String Classes
        Providing a solid pedagogical basis within class instruction. Strategies for achieving high levels of performance through effective use of written and rote materials and drills. Strengthening students' ability to progress independently by developing listening and analytical skills. Can be combined with preceding topic for a longer session.

Teaching Secondary School Orchestra
        Presents ideas for structuring high school and/or middle school orchestras, focusing upon:
        techniques for successful orchestra presentation
        strategies for securing the orchestra's place in the school program
        public relations tools and techniques.

Back to Basics; or, If we all know this stuff, why don't all orchestras sound terrific?
        A practical look at how application of correct fundamental techniques improves any string group at any level of development. This clinic can focus on a particular grade level, or progress from beginning to advanced players. What have you forgotten about string teaching?

Essential Skills for School Cellists
        A practical approach to help insure the success of young cellists. Essential techniques and considerations applicable to players from elementary through high school age who may not have access to private instruction.

How to successfully create bassists at the middle or high school levels quickly!
        A distillation of essential skills and techniques aimed producing a functioning orchestral bassist. Presentation of useful instruction material and suggestions for effective application. This session can be expanded to include a more thorough presentation of a system of double bass pedagogy.

Instrument Care From Top to Bottom
        An overview of instrument/bow maintenance and repair issues for the music educator, focusing on things we can all look for and deal with to help give our students a happier experience. Includes troubleshooting and emergency repair methods. Extremely beneficial for non-string playing teachers as well as string majors.

What No One Ever Told Me: A survival guide for string teachers
        Aimed at music ed. majors headed for student teaching and at teachers in the early stages of their careers. Thirty-five years of learning experiences condensed into an hour which might save your life. This might open some experienced eyes as well.


CLINIC TOPICS FOR STUDENTS   (One-hour sessions)

Taking Care of Your Instrument
        A step-by-step guide to keeping your instrument in top condition. Cleaning techniques, simple adjustments, how to choose, install and care for strings, bow care. Why, when and how to purchase a better instrument and/or bow.

How to Become a Better Sightreader
        Helps students develop sightreading skills through recognition of tonal and rhythmic patterns, awareness of key structure, and maintenance of pulse.

Playing Techniques for String Instruments
        Customized clinics for violin, viola, cello or bass can be presented to homogeneous or mixed-instrument groups. Sessions can involve student performance, and are geared to provide maximum effectiveness at the students' present level of development. Possible topics include:
  • Understanding Finger Patterns
  • Swing Into Vibrato
  • Developing Shifting Technique (without a clutch)
  • How to get a "Strad" sound: Secrets of Tone Production

Master Classes for String Students
        Provides an opportunity for students to learn from other students' performances in a traditional master class format. Available to players of all instruments at all levels of development. 
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"These sessions can be customized or other topics developed to meet the needs of students and teachers. Many of these ideas can also be incorporated in a guest-conducting appearance with your orchestra."
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