Music has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. When I was three, I was given a recorder by a very sweet couple who lived next door to us. I learned a little about it, and could play the simple tunes that came with the instrument – but I soon forgot about it! Even though I didn’t continue with music-hugo-expressesthe recorder at the time, my love of music only grew. Over the years, I tried a few instruments – french horn, piano –  but once I started playing the violin, I knew I would be a string player for life. When my first viola came home (which my 13-year old son now plays), I was in love! It’s been my primary instrument since about the seventh grade.

I played off and on during the years after my first two children were born, but never consistently until our twins began to show interest in music when they were very, very small. But it wasn’t until I volunteered to teach music to Kindergarten and first grade students at a school in Lakeside, that I realized how much I had missed music. Many hours of study, lessons, and practice later, I am a better musician now than I have ever been; and, thanks to not playing consistently for a few years, I also have a valuable perspective by relearning my instruments.

Community orchestras, weddings, entertainment gigs, and quartets have made up the bulk of my playing over the last 10 years. Some of my favorite time was spent with Equinox Quartet, playing music from the Renaissance up through the Baroque period, and working with the children of East County Youth Symphony.

It’s in working with young children that I really shine as a teacher. There’s something about the way they approach things – pure curiosity with no doubt that they can learn it – that keeps me coming back, and fuels my love of teaching. My goal for every student is to leave me having a strong understanding of theory, musicianship and desire to seek out more opportunities for growth. I work with each student to tailor a program specifically for their needs, from working through simple bowing mechanics issues to the psychology of performance.

Each student is unique, with different challenges to overcome, and using a one-size fits all approach does not work.

I like being available to my students for questions, whenever they may need to ask them. I believe that you shouldn’t have to wait for the next lesson to have a question answered; the answer to question may be just what’s needed make the pieces start coming together.

Specialties

Classically trained, but I also enjoy Irish Fiddle and modern music. I’m open to learning anything new, and if you want to learn it, I’ll figure out how to teach you. We will work together to develop a plan that will grow knowledge and help foster a love of making music.

I specialize in working with kids of all ages. Don’t we all have a little kid inside us just itching to get out and play?

Why Music?

It was our twins who got me started teaching music. Being a teacher is something I never imagined, but can’t imagine not doing now. Their pre-K teacher asked me to help with music in their class. The first instrument I thought of when deciding how to go about it was the recorder. It’s easy to use, small enough for small hands, and has a long history.

I took the time to re-learn the soprano recorder, put together a curriculum and together, the children and I learned. I learned to teach, and they learned music. By the end of that semester, they were able to play a couple of simple songs, and even read some music. I couldn’t have been more proud.

That small volunteer position grew into a wonderful program that I ran for several years, teaching all kindergarten and first grade students music through the recorder. I am so blessed to be able to share music with children, and I have been inspired to bring it to as many as I possibly can. Through the power of the internet, I can do exactly that.
I have, over the last several years, come to the conclusion that the vast majority of people are wired for music in some form.

The problem is that we wait too long to introduce music to kids, and we limit their choices to a small handful of instruments because it’s easier.

I have adapted my school program for use by parents – through, reading, exercises and activities. When we open up access to music to everyone then we have the opportunity as parents, to really see what our children can do without the limitations placed upon them by preconceptions.

Not everyone is going to be a Mozart, but everyone can enjoy music. Not only that, but you’ll be amazed at the growth your child during lessons.

Gail-nelson

Music is my passion in life.
Through music, all things are possible!

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