Practice tips: Jodie on a Suzuki podcast

Beyond the Music Lesson Podcast

It always helps to have more thoughts and tips on how to make practice enjoyable and productive. Recently Jodie got to share some tips during an interview on the Beyond the Music Lesson Podcast. Check out the show for her advice plus lots more from the hosts, Abbey and Christine.


Suzuki Violin Workshop, Feb. 8-9, 2019

Early registration ends Oct. 31

Dr. Timothy (Terry) Durbin

Dr. Timothy (Terry) Durbin

Our friends at Willamette Violin Academy are holding a special 2019 Suzuki Violin Workshop. Styled after a Suzuki Summer Institute, participants perform in group classes, music analysis workshops, popular music improvisation lessons, masterclasses, a parent talk, and an information session on instrument selection and care. Internationally renowned clinicians deliver a heavy dose of inspiration, learning, and fun—a much-needed boost for Suzuki children and parents during the long winter months!

“I hope your students will take advantage of this really fun opportunity,” says Dr. Kara Eubanks, WVA director and violin teacher. “The workshop is for all levels and ages. Group class with Terry is can’t-miss event, he’s just so incredible.”

An early registration discount is available through the end of October.

Learn more and register

Introducing our new Suzuki Violin Teacher, Elyse M. Walters

Elyse M. Walters, Suzuki Violin Teacher

Please join Jodie and Meagan in welcoming ESMA’s newest Suzuki violin teacher, Elyse M. Walters!

We’ve been talking with Elyse for nearly a year now. She was born in Klamath Falls, and today lives in Creswell with her husband, two daughters (one of who was born in July!), and two French bulldogs.

You can learn more about Elyse here.

Elyse is in the process of setting up a teaching space in Eugene. We’ll keep you posted on her new location.

If you would like to take lessons with Elyse, you can register here.

Upcoming Suzuki workshop

Workshops, masterclasses, group events & parent talk, all levels, Feb. 24

My friend and colleague Kara Eubanks at Willamette Violin Academy has helped organize a wonderful all-levels Suzuki workshop on Sat., Feb., 24. (And yes, this is the same day as the recital, but it starts later in the day. Sometimes you really can do it all!)

A wonderful Suzuki opportunity is around the corner. On Saturday, February 24, Suzuki violin students and parents are invited to participate for an afternoon of learning and inspiration with two of Portland’s most celebrated Suzuki violin teachers, Lisa Hansen and Christine Goodner, author of Beyond the Music Lesson.

Who can attend?

Students of all ages and levels studying with a registered Suzuki teacher in any music school or studio are welcome. There is no student too novice or advanced for this event—pre-Twinkle is welcome, too! Local Suzuki teachers can register as observers to watch our clinicians teach for the day.

Even new beginners can attend?

Oh, yes! indicate on your registration that your child is a pre-Twinkle or Twinkler. Group classes for their level will be offered, and consider registering for a masterclass—our clinicians are amazing with young students, and you’ll be amazed what you can learn in a short visit with a guest clinician. Most importantly, the parent talk is a priceless opportunity for new Suzuki Parents. Christine Goodner is a brilliant guide for Suzuki parents. Check out her blog at

What does the day look like?

Some students will wish to perform in a masterclass—a short, one-on-one lesson with a clinician on their polished piece, for an audience of Suzuki families. All students will participate in at least one group class with one of our clinicians, and will participate in the Review Rumpus!, a goofy, fun review party led by some local, advanced Suzuki violinists. During the review party, parents will attend a parent talk with Christine Goodner.

What is the schedule?

Some students will attend from 12pm to 5pm, if they wish to perform in a masterclass and observe masterclasses before the group events begin. Other students who choose to only participate in group events may have a day as short as 2pm to 5pm. All registered participants are encouraged to observe masterclasses.

How much does it cost?

Participation in group events only, along with the parent talk, costs $25. Masterclass performers pay $40 for the day’s events.

Where is the event?

1390 Pearl Street (map & directions) , in the First Church of Christ, Scientist.

Can I bring my Suzuki violinist’s sibling(s) to the workshop?

Yes! Suzuki is a family affair, and siblings are welcome to observe, as long as they are supervised by parents.

Register today!


Email Kara:

How to download Little Notes listening

Week 1 and Week 2 listening available on iTunes and Apple Music

As you know, our Suzuki listening is an important part of our days not just in class, but at home too. While our Little Notes listening (Week One, Week Two, plus some bonus lullabies) is available on CD, you can also get your Little Notes listening through Apple iTunes and Apple Music. Be sure to add both to your library:

Week 1 Listening

Little Notes Listening - Week 1

Week 2 Listening

Little Notes Listening - Week 2

Listening tip

Pick a consistent time of day to put on your Little Notes Listening. First thing in the morning, during lunch, or during a drive might work better for you (we put on ours during bedtime). Pick whatever is best for your routine.

P.S.: Just so you know, these links are affiliate links. Price is the same for you, but some of the proceeds go to support ESMA. Thanks and see you in class.

Fall Term starts Sept. 11

Despite all the smoke and heat, I hope you had a good Labor Day weekend and that back-to-school week is off to a good start for you.

Quick reminder: ESMA is closed this week, and Fall Term begins Mon., Sept. 11. Here are some important dates for you:

  • Fall Term: Sept. 11-Dec. 16, 2017
  • Little Notes classes and violin lessons all resume the week of Sept. 11
  • Saturday Little Notes resumes Sat., Sept. 16… but with new times: 9:00–10:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.—11:30 a.m.
  • Wednesday Little Notes is unchanged, but Thursday has new times. Wednesday and Thursday Little Notes classes meet at 9:30–10:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.

Group Classes

  • Every Friday afternoon
  • Quarter Notes (Pre-Twinkle Beginners): 3:45–4:15 p.m.
  • Half Notes (Book 1 Group): 4:15–4:45 p.m.
  • Whole Notes (Book 2 and up): 4:45–5:30 p.m.

Fall Recital

  • Sat., Oct. 28, 11 a.m.
  • Location TBD
  • For Violin and Little Notes families
  • Halloween costumes welcome!

Other Important Studio Dates

  • Busking at Eugene Holiday Market: Sat., Dec. 9, 2017
  • End-of-Term Studio Pizza Party: Fri., Dec. 15
  • Thanksgiving Break: No lessons or classes Nov. 20–25
  • Last day of term for violin lessons: Fri., Dec. 15
  • Last day of term for Little Notes: Sat., Dec. 16

Need to register?

Register for Violin Lessons

Register for Little Notes

Here's hoping the smoke clears soon, and see you next week.

Suzuki Parents: Tell us how we can help you with practice

From our in-studio library to our Practice Corner videos, we’re looking at new and better ways we can help Suzuki parents with practice and the ups and downs of working with your child on their musical journey.

In 30 seconds, you can tell us how we’re doing and how we can help you better:

Fill out our Suzuki Parent Survey

Practice video: Why Live Performance Is Essential & Wonderful

How concerts inspire musicians of all ages

Welcome to Practice Corner! Whatever the season, there are live music performances you and your child can attend. From summer concerts outside, to going to a jam or concert anytime of year, live performance excites and inspires musicians of all ages. There’s nothing like seeing how music gets made! You can also work with your child to set up your own live performance, from busking at a local market, to hosting a small recital for friends, family, and neighbors at your home or in your backyard. Today we talk about why taking your kids to live music performances isn’t only essential, it’s wonderful too.

Dr. Suzuki says: “Music is the language of the heart without words.”

Watch live (and ask questions)! Tune in every other week at ESMA’s Facebook Page for new Practice Corners. You can also share your own tips and questions.

If you can’t tune in to the broadcast, no worries. You can find our Practice Corner videos on the ESMA YouTube Channel, and at the Practice Corner section of the ESMA website.

Have you taken your kids to a musical concert or performance… or maybe put on your own?

Summer Registration & Summer Term

ESMA Summer Term

Summer Term is almost here, and registration is open! During summer we change up both lessons and Little Notes classes:

Suzuki Violin Lessons

  • Lessons are available Tuesday–Thursdays throughout July 11–Aug. 31.
  • Sign up for lessons based on your summer schedule.
  • 4-lesson minimum required of all violin students (but more is better).
  • No group class during summer. Group class will resume in Fall Term.

Little Notes Music Classes

  • Little Notes classes are available only on Wednesdays (9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.) and Thursdays (10:15 a.m.), July 12–Aug. 31.
  • Saturday class will resume in Fall Term.
  • Little Notes can be signed up for on a class-by-class basis based on what works for your schedule.

Payment for lessons and classes is due by July 10.

Complete your summer registration

Download your registration forms here:

ESMA Summer Violin Lessons Registration Form (PDF)

ESMA Summer Littles Notes Registration Form (PDF)

A farewell letter from Elizabeth Gergel

Elizabeth Gergel, Suzuki Cello Teacher

Thank you to Liz for being part of ESMA, and best of luck in Denver.

Dear ESMA Community,

It is with a heavy heart that I bid farewell to you and your children. During June I’m finishing my Masters degree at UO, then I will move to Colorado to join my partner and begin building a freelance career there.

It is hard to say good-bye. I have been extremely fortunate to work with such amazing students here. Jodie and Anthony have been incredibly generous and helpful to me, and I am eternally grateful for their support. In my two short years in Eugene I have grown to love so many things about my life here. However, with my parents in North Carolina and my partner in Colorado, it makes more sense for me to move.

Thank you all for welcoming me into your warm community here at ESMA. It’s been a wonderful experience to be part of such a creative and thriving environment. I will hold memories of these two years dear to me for the rest of my life. Warm wishes for a beautiful Pacific Northwest summer.

Elizabeth Gergel

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