Peter Prier is a violin maker who has established a prestigious violin making school in downtown Salt Lake City, UT. Watch him telling the story of how he got to be a violin maker.
Few human abilities inspire as much awe, fascination and joy as the talent to play beautiful and contemplative music, and it seems that one only need to visit YouTube to witness dozens of very young children playing the violin with jaw-dropping finesse.
But is that kind of musical ability strictly a natural gift, or can your child also develop the skills to play that well?
Violin instructor Rigo Murillo of Love Nurtured Music believes that musical talent can be developed as young as three years old through listening, imitation and repetition, and has designed a successful curriculum based on this idea.
“We assume that every child can develop abilities to play the violin,” says Murillo.
Based on a concept developed by Shinichi Suzuki, a Japanese violin teacher who taught violin to infants in Matsumoto in 1946, Murillo proves that children can develop their musical abilities beyond what most parents think is possible through group classes and daily direction — similar to how students memorize multiplication charts or the periodic table.
But for parents who aren’t too concerned with their child becoming the next Yo-Yo Ma, is there another compelling reason to enroll your child in musical studies so early?
A recent report by the Scientific American suggests that you should if you want your child to have the best advantage in life, as playing music makes us significantly smarter, and the earlier the better.
According to a recent Scientific American article, neuroscientists found a direct correlation between music learning and increased learning ability, leading to improved memory and concentration throughout one’s life, boosting the ability to multitask, work in disruptive environments and learn other languages.
The researchers found that disciplined “instrument training from an early age can help the brain to process sounds better, making it easier to stay focused when absorbing other subjects, from literature to tensor calculus.”
This information comes at a pivotal time when students are competing more than ever to get into the best colleges and graduate programs, and recent graduates vie for limited jobs, while many schools continue to cut music and arts programs to save money.
A recent report shows that, for example, the number of students enrolled in music programs in California dropped by 50% from 1999 to 2004.
Perhaps that’s why the Lake Higlands-based music establishment has lately flooded with young students’ parents wanting to try the all-inclusive musical approach.
Nolan Clark, parent of one young violinist says, “under Rigo’s guidance I’ve watched my daughter progress tremendously, and we look forward to a continued partnership with Rigo in the future.”
Through dedicated weekly one-on-one violin lessons, regular group sessions and performances, Murillo is determined to give students and their parents the best possible future and carry the remarkable gift of music with them for the rest of their lives.
As a requisite for children to be admitted in the program, Murillo simply asks parents to always be present during the program’s activities so they can conduct effective home practice sessions, and to play a prearranged musical recording playlist at home.
To find out how to give your child the gift of music, call Love Nurtured Music at 214-269-8545, or visit www.LoveNurturedMusic.org.
By Rigo Murillo
I just came across an October 2010 Scientific American article, in which neuroscientists examined the benefits of learning and practicing music. They found a direct correlation of music learning to the enhancement of general learning ability. Another confirmation of the fact that music makes people smarter.
The researchers found that “assiduous instrument training from an early age can help the brain to process sounds better, making it easier to stay focused when absorbing other subjects, from literature to tensor calculus.” They also discovered that music lessons improves memory and concentration throughout one’s life and boosts the ability to multitask, work in disruptive environments and learning other languages.
This information comes handy at a time when many schools and education administrators are deciding to cut music and arts programs as a first resource. A report mentioned in the article found that, for example, the number of students enrolled in music programs in California dropped 50% from 1999 to 2004.
It seems that it is time for the scientists to educate the educators… just saying. What do you think?
This is the Suzuki Association of the Americas suggested supplementary list for violin students. This list does NOT impede any teacher from using their personal favorites, nor a teacher trainer from presenting a more comprehensive list for each book or distributing their own list. This list is meant as a guideline.
Elgar Salut d’Amor/Faure Apres un Reve
Kreisler Rondino/Song of India/Tempo di Minuetto
Dancla Air Varie Op. 89/Dvorak Sonatina/Schubert Sonatine
Bach Concerto for Two Violins 2nd mvt. (both parts in score)
Potstock Souvenir de Sarasate/Severn Polish Dance
Bartok Duets Book 1/Kabalevsky Album Pieces/Persichetti Masques
Bach-Gounod Ave Maria/Faure Berceuse/Massenet Meditation from Thais
Kreisler Gluck Melodie/Schoen Rosmarin/Sicilienne & Rigaudon
Accolay Concerto/Haydn G Major Concerto 1st mvt./Nardini Concerto/Mozart Sonata E minor K304
Monti Czardas/Schubert L’Abeille/Wieniawski Obertass Mazurka
Bartok Sonatina/Gardner From the Cane Break/Shostakovich Duets
Paradis Sicilienne/Svendsen Romance/ Tchaikovsky Canzonetta/Wieniawsky Romance (Con. No. 2)
Kreisler Praeludium & Allegro/Syncopation/Variations on a Theme by Corelli
DeBeriot Concerto No.9/Scene de Ballet/Mozart G Major Concerto/Viotti Concerto No.23/Beethoven “Spring” Sonata 1st mvt./Mozart Sonata in G Major K301
Bach Concerto for Two Violins 3rd mvt. (both parts in score)
Brahms Hungarian Dances/Novacek Perpetual Motion/Ten Have Allegro Brilliante/Wieniawski Legende
Bartok Roumanian Folk Dances/Bolling Suite for Violin and Jazz Piano—Romance & Gavotte/Copland Hoedown
Telemann Fantasy No. 1, 7 and 10
Bach G Minor Sonata, Presto/D Minor Partita, Allamanda/E Major Partita, Bourree & Gigue
If you are already aware of all the academic benefits that Suzuki violin lessons will bring to your child’s life and know how the Suzuki Method works, congratulations! You are one of the many happy parents who experience the joy of nurturing your child’s efforts and wants him/her to succeed in music, academics, social life, and beyond. Here is how to get started:
One of the most challenging tasks for a young child in learning the violin is to stay concentrated long enough to stay in place and hold the instrument. Here are some fun exercises that have proven highly successful for keeping pre-Twinklers on task and improve concentration skills.
Let your child stand in play position and place a penny (or any other coin) on top of each feet. Let him/her be still while listening to music (Twinkle variations, etc.) The challenge is to stay still for as long as the music plays. You can ask your child: How long can you stay still? can you stay still during the whole piece?
Ready, aim, look!
Let your child stand in play position with the violin on the shoulder (no bow). Make sure the violin is placed correctly in place. Then, look for an object in the room that can serve as a bulls eye to where your child to aim the scroll of the violin. It can be a lamp, stuffed animal, or anything that’s the height level of your child’s shoulder. As you let your child “aim” at the object, make sure that the feet are lined up too, without twisting the playing position. Let him/her look and the object, aim, and, then, look at the violin and stay still. Count or play music for a minute or two. At the end, let him go back to rest position and take a bow. Repeat and then you can look for a different bull’s eye to make it more interesting and fun.
Candle, be still
With only the bow, let your child stand on her feet play position and let her hold the bow with a nice bow hand, pointing the tip of the bow towards the ceiling. Tell your child that we are going to pretend that the bow is a candle and that we need to keep still and pointing up. Let her hold it for an entire Twinkle variation.
The problem with review is NOT that students don’t want to do it. It is that it’s difficult to do it consistently throughout the Suzuki repertoire.
“Bucket” Review Technique:
Write all the pieces’ names on separate pieces of paper (or better yet, ping-pong balls), put them in a “bucket”. Everyday, have your violinist draw a few pieces of paper (or ping-pong balls) one at a time, reviewing each one, then, put the ones played in a second bucket.
When you’re through, change buckets and go through them again. When your child learns a new piece, add a new paper or ball with its name to the bucket. You can also include all of the pieces in the current book, and have your child LISTEN to it when it comes in the drawing.
This is the easiest way to “hit” all of the pieces before the “favorites” get played more, letting the others get relegated.
This a great example of great phrasing, and that TONE! I like it at this speed. Those who want to “show off” at 1.5X the printed speed can’t come up with the marvelous depth of this interpretation, which needs this tempo and much more. Zukerman gives it all here in this truly beautiful rendition of such a popular concerto.
Because of our high-quality instructional program and un-compromised commitment to excellence, we have families from all over the metroplex coming to take violin lessons at our program. Don't sacrifice excellent Suzuki music education!
These are some areas where our Suzuki music families drive from: