Winter Recital 2017!

I hosted my 6th annual Winter Student Recital yesterday at the Sanctuary at Convergence. Such a blast! I had to step in for a viola duet as one of my students (1/2 of the duet) was ill, but Maggie took it all in stride.

I am brimming with pride for my students. They all prepared so well for their performances, and seeing their smiles when they finished made my heart melt! What fun it is to see these students grow, mature, and discover the great joy of music and performing. Job well done, all!

I'm back!

Sorry for the long delay in updating the blog.  It has been a busy spring in the studio, and we just wrapped up our 5th annual Spring Recital last weekend! Two weeks ago, I held my 2nd annual Mini-recital for my adult students. Both performances were tons of fun. There were several students who were brand-new to the excitement of live performance, and all the adrenaline and jitters that come with it!

One of my students performed the first movement of the Bach Double Violin Concerto with her brother. Here they are rehearsing with my dog Luke supervising. (He loves violin lessons!) Bach Double rehearsal

And, here are both my youth and adult studios, post-recital. The post-performance relief and pride is evident!

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Winter Recital 2015

Another Winter Recital is down in the books! Last weekend, 22 of my students performed solo for an audience of about 90. Despite lots of nerves and jitters, they did a super job. And the recital ended with a bang -- my final performer, Duke, broke his bow in the final measure of his solo, Slavonic Fantasie by Dvorak-Kreisler.  It was an exciting way to wrap up! Enjoy the pics below. Parris

I have taught siblings Nozomi and Duke since they were FIVE. Now they're in high school and they tower over me!

N &D

Here I am with all of my wonderful students who performed!


Winter Recital 2014

Mission accomplished! I'm proud of all of my students who performed in my recent Winter Recital. This time I invited a few of my musical parents to perform alongside their sons and daughters. It was a fun, interesting, and unique experience for the audience and the performers! The final performance of the afternoon was the first movement of the Bach Double Violin Concerto. It was performed in a string quartet format: my students Duke and Nozomi played the violin parts while I accompanied on viola, and Ralph Brooker played the cello part.

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Spring Recital, 2013!

I presented my annual Spring Recital on June 1 at the Sanctuary at Convergence. Twenty-seven of my students performed solos while I accompanied them on piano. All of the students did a really lovely job. It takes a lot of courage to stand up in front of a crowd and perform, and I was very proud of them! The Sanctuary at Convergence

Enjoying some post-performance refreshments.

With one of my littlest students, post-recital!


A Busy Spring

It's been a very packed spring here at the violin studio! Some of the highlights included my very first Adult Student Music Hour for my more mature students. Three of my adult students and their spouses came over to the house for a small get-together. Each student performed a solo while I accompanied on piano.  It was a lovely afternoon and a more relaxed way for my adult students to get a taste of performing (and all the excitement and jitters that come with it)! My band, The Beanstalk Library has wrapped up the recording of our newest album, The View From Here. It will be available for purchase in a couple of weeks. We played a show at the very cozy and intimate Galaxy Hut on Memorial Day to celebrate the completion of the record. Here's a pic from that show:

TBL Galaxy Hut


Deck the Halls!

I'm in the midst of a music-filled December. My quartet, the Cherry Blossom String Quartet has had a banner year, and we are finishing it off with our busiest holiday season ever! All kinds of lovely company holiday parties and beautiful holiday weddings are on the horizon for CBSQ. Check us out at our annual performance at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Alexandria, VA for their Lessons & Carols Service on December 16, and their Midnight Mass on December 24. In the teaching studio, I have been helping many of my students prepare for my first-ever Holiday Recital next weekend. Twenty-five students ranging in age from 6 to 15 will perform a mix of Christmas tunes and classical pieces. Judging from what I've been hearing in their lessons this past week, parents are in store for some lovely performances!

To round what has been an amazing year for me, I'll again join The Beanstalk Library at their 3rd Annual New Year's Eve Throwdown on December 31, 2012 at IOTA Club & Cafe in Arlington, VA. Sweetening the bill will be bands Ugly Purple Sweater and Alex Vans & The Hide Away. This is guaranteed to be a great night. Tickets are on sale now at IOTA for $18.00.

Student Recital: Mission Accomplished!

This past weekend, I held my Winter Recital at the Sanctuary at Convergence for 20 of my young students. It was a wonderful opportunity to have them show off to their friends and family all that they had learned in their lessons. Each student performed one or two solos (by memory) while I accompanied them on the piano. At the end of the recital, I even performed a movement of the Mendelssohn Piano Trio I've been working on with my friends CJ (piano) and Emily (cello) - this time with me on violin of course. :) I believe that it is so important that students become comfortable with performing -it's certainly one of those things that becomes easier with practice. Sure, there were lots of  butterflies and shaky knees on Saturday, but the sense of accomplishment after a performance well-done surely outweighs the nervousness beforehand.

Looking forward to the Spring Recital!

Performances to Catch this Month

Happy New Year! As we all get our fresh new start this January, a great way to get yourself or your child re-inspired about playing violin is to attend a live performance. Bundle up and venture out into the cold this month to catch one of the DC area's excellent performances:

1) January 15: The NSO at the Kennedy Center

As a former member of the Development Department at the Kennedy Center, I'm still enthralled by the top-notch performances and amazing atmosphere that the KC offers.

Update 1/14/11: Just saw this performance last night -- it was very enjoyable. The soloist was excellent, but I'm partial to the Sibelius in the 2nd half of the concert. It was worth it if you can get tickets for tonight or tomorrow!

2) January 15, Fairfax Symphony at the Center for the Arts, GMU

3) January 29, NSO Prelude on the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center

This is a free performance of two great pieces. You'll love the somewhat rarely heard instrumental combination of piano, horn, and violin.

Christmastime = Musictime

The holidays are here -- that means it's primetime for live musical performances of all kinds! This is an especially wonderful time for students to get out there and share their gifts with the world! Who doesn't love a little live Christmas music? Below are my favorite 5 holiday performing opportunities: 5.) School music performances

For the younger students, this may be their very first performance opportunity, as students who began learning their instruments in September are ready to perform a few short tunes!

4.) Performing at a retirement or assisted living community

This is a great opportunity for kids to share their gifts and visit our senior citizens! Call around and offer to perform as a small ensemble or a group of soloists during the holidays. These facilities almost always welcome live music.

3.) In-home performances for friends and family

Chamber music as it was meant to be played: in the home! What better time to share your music with relatives and friends than when they're visiting for the holidays?

2.) Religious services

This time of year is filled with religious services of all types. String instruments are especially lovely during the more solemn occasions leading up to Christmas: Advent services, Lessons & Carols services, or Midnight Mass.

1.) "Caroling" at a local hospital

The cold wintry weather is not friendly to string instruments, so opt for sharing your musical gifts with others indoors. This is one of my personal favorite Christmas memories: During my high school years, a friend and I would get together on Christmas Day, learn melody and harmony to our favorite Christmas carols, and stroll through the hallways of our local hospital for an hour or two. The families and staff at the hospital on Christmas were always so very appreciative of the music. The feelings of Christmas goodwill and warmth were present in everyone we met.

Here's hoping you're able to share your musical gifts with the world this holiday season!