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String Suzuki Workshop

2018 dates tba.

A look back at 2017 . . . 

Join us for a weekend of intensive instruction, motivation, and fun with some of the most creative clinicians in North America. 

March Suzuki String Workshop at The Hartt School Community Division

The March Hartt Suzuki String Workshop launches on Friday, March 17, 2017, with master classes for intermediate and advanced students led by our guest clinicians. Friday master classes are by teacher recommendation only. Saturday, March 18, 2017, is the core of the program with three hours of class. On Sunday, March 19, 2017, cello teacher trainer Richard Mooney will offer a continuing education lecture for all string teachers, plus advanced cello master classes for observation.


Master clinician Thomas Wermuth of Chicago will be working with violin students at the intermediate and advanced level. Known for his unique ability to tap into each student’s individual skills, Wermuth will work with students in a one-on-one setting on Friday, as well as in a special group format for pre-teens and teens on Saturday. HCD students: check with your private teacher for more information.


Friday Evening Master Classes (by Invitation Only)

Friday afternoon/evening is dedicated to master classes with our innovative guest clinicians. Master classes give students the unique opportunity to not only be coached by our distinguished guest clinicians, but also to be inspired by their peers.

Intermediate students will receive approximately 20-minutes of one-on-one coaching, and advanced students will receive approximately 30-minutes of one-on one coaching with a guest clinician, followed by the opportunity to observe the clinician work with other students. Students should be prepared to stay for the full duration of the master class.

Location: Universalist Church of West Hartford, 433 Fern St., West Hartford, Conn.

Master classes are open to HCD private lessons students at the recommendation of a HCD faculty member.

Saturday Workshop

Schedules will not be available before the workshop. Please fill out your registration form carefully with complete information. Confirmation of receipt of registration will be sent by e-mail. Please be sure that your email address is clearly printed on your registration form.

Registration and classes will take place at The Hartt School in the Fuller Music Center on the University of Hartford campus. Upon entering the Bloomfield Avenue campus of the University, continue until you reach Parking Lot D. Park in Lot D and enter The Hartt School, which is directly across the street. Signs will be posted to help you find the registration station.  Students are scheduled for three hours of classes, held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with a break for lunch*.


Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your first class.

  • 9 a.m.: Students Book 2 and above
  • 10 a.m.: Students Book 1


Students may not be scheduled every hour. It is suggested that during the child’s free time observation of more advanced students occur. Feel free to observe any class as room allows. There are also plenty of practice rooms available on the lower level of The Hartt School (Fuller Music Center).

*Lunch: There are no lunch facilities available on the University campus on the workshop date. Please bring a bag lunch and visit with friends. A space will be provided where lunch can be eaten.

Saturday schedule is open to all students currently studying with a Suzuki teacher. Students should be at least 4 years of age and able to play the fourth piece in Book 1 on their instrument to participate in the weekend workshop.


Sunday Teacher Workshop

Sunday is dedicated to our teachers for our Teacher Enrichment Workshop. Richard Mooney will offer a continuing education lecture for all string teachers, plus advanced cello master classes for observation.  

Cello master classes: 9–11 a.m.
Teacher session: 11:15 a.m.–1:15 p.m.

Location: The University of Hartford's The Hartt School, 200 Bloomfield Ave., West Hartford, Conn.

Tuition and Registration

Early-bird Registration: Register by January 30, 2017, and save!
Register now. Registration deadline: March 1, 2017.

Friday Master Class* (Full as of 3/7/17)

This master class is full as of 3/7/17. There are still spots available in the Saturday master class. 
  • Intermediate Master Class Tuition: $55

  • Advanced Master Class Tuition: $70

Early-bird Registration: Register by January 30, 2017, and save $5!

*Participation in master classes are by HCD teacher invitation only.

Full: No longer taking registrations.

Saturday Workshop

  • Tuition: $95

  • Registration Fee: $15, waived for HCD Private Lesson Students

Early-bird Registration: Register by January 30, 2017, and save $5!

Register now.

Bundle: Friday Master Class + Saturday Workshop

Register for the Master Class and Workshop together to save $15!

  • Intermediate Bundle Tuition: $135

  • Advanced Bundle Tuition: $150

  • Registration Fee: $15, waived for HCD private lesson students

Early-bird Registration: Register by January 30, 2017 and save $5!

Register now.

Sunday Teacher Workshop

  • Tuition for teachers: $60

  • Tuition for advanced cello students chosen for Sunday master class: $70

  • No registration fee

Register now.

Guest Clinicians

  • Thomas Wermuth, advanced violin; Western Springs, Ill.
  • Tal Schifter, violin; Westbury, N.Y.
  • Susan Reed, violin and enrichment; Dover, Mass.
  • Natalie Brandt Coots, violin and viola; Ithaca, N.Y.
  • Richard Mooney, cello; La Verne, Calif.
  • Seth Himmelhoch, guitar; Teaneck, N.J.

Read more about our guest clinicians below.

Thomas Wermuth

Thomas WermuthThomas Wermuth has been an active teacher in the Suzuki method for the past thirty-five years at many institutes and workshops throughout the world. In 2007 he was recognized by the United States Department of Education and was given the Presidential Scholars Mentors Award at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. His background includes 15 years with the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony Orchestra, Canadian Chamber Ensemble, and private studio teaching. For the past twenty years he has been on the faculty at the Western Springs School of Talent Education in the Chicagoland area. In addition to teaching, Tom is a graduate of the Barbara Brennan School of Healing.

Tal Schifter

Tal SchifterTal Schifter is the co-director of the Suzuki Strings of Long Island. Schifter has been on the faculty of Sound Encounters and the Mid-Southwest Suzuki Institute in Kansas, the Texas State Suzuki Institute, the Ithaca Suzuki Institute, the Advanced Suzuki Institute of Stanford as well as the Hartt Suzuki Institute in West Hartford. He has served as a guest clinician throughout the United States at various workshops.

Schifter began violin at the age of three as a Suzuki student at The School for Strings in New York City. He continued his studies at The Juilliard School and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. As a violinist, he has performed at several music festivals including the Aspen Music Festival, Manchester Chamber Music Festival, and Meadowmount School of Music.

The Suzuki Strings of Long Island has performed at various venues including Carnegie Hall in November 2007 as guests of a Gala Benefit hosted by Rob Reiner which included performances by Natalie Cole and other celebrities. In the summer of 2017, Suzuki Strings of Long Island will team up with the Hartt Suzuki School to perform on tour in Alaska.

Schifter’s students have won numerous competitions and prizes at international competitions Many have been invited to play as soloist with several orchestras on Long Island and abroad, as well as performing in recital at Carnegie’s Weill Hall and Merkin Hall. Several students have been chosen to perform at the biennial Suzuki Conference youth orchestras and Master Classes. Several of Schifter’s students have gone on to pursue their musical instruction at The Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division.

Susan Reed

Susan Reed

Susan Reed is a classical violinist and award winning folk musician, storyteller, author, and recording artist from the Boston area. Susan is a multi-instrumentalist who uses original songs and stories to work magic with families, on local and national stages. Her aim is to inspire a life-long love of music. Common to all of her performances is a trademark sense of humor and optimism, and her conviction that music has the power to broaden people’s understanding of the world around them.

Reed states: “Music and storytelling, it is my favorite way to encourage people to think about the world around them or the person sitting right next to them. That’s what I like to do.”

Susan performs her songs and stories with orchestras, drawing audiences into the rich world of classical music, connecting audience to ensemble, and strengthening musical communities. She presents family music at its best, inspiring a new generation of classical music and musicians.

Reed also performs with her daughters in Tatu Mianzi, a fresh twist on the classical string trio. She is dedicated to education in the arts on every level. In addition to being an active Suzuki teacher she also presents workshops on alternative playing styles and Teach Smart, a teaching workshop for performers. Susan is presently serving as Chair of the Board of Overseers at New England Conservatory of Music, in Boston, MA and she is a member of TED. 

Reed has recorded many award winning CD’s and books. She has been recognized and honored by Parents’ Choice, Mom’s Choice, Creative Child Magazine, Tillywig, and NAPPA. All of Susan’s recordings and books are available on her website.

Natalie Brandt Coots

Natlie Coots BrandtNatalie Brandt Coots began her Suzuki violin studies at age 7 in Manlius, New York, under the loving instruction of Nancy Fennessy. After 11 years of learning from Nancy, Natalie attended Ithaca College where she pursued a double Bachelor’s Degree of music education and violin performance, all with the intention of continuing onto her Master’s Degree at IC in Suzuki Pedagogy. Sanford Reuning and Carrie Reuning- Hummel were Natalie’s mentors throughout her Master’s Degree.

Having delved into the Suzuki viola world, Natalie now teaches Suzuki violin and viola at Ithaca Talent Education in Ithaca, NY, and has taken teacher training all 10 Suzuki violin volumes. Her teacher trainers include Tom Wermuth, Ed Kreitman, Nancy Lokken, Kimberly Meier- Sims, Susan Baer, Sanford Reuning, and Carrie Reuning- Hummel. Natalie recently joined the faculty of the Ithaca Summer Suzuki Institute, and loves to teach in workshop and institute settings.

Brandt Coots hopes to share the incomparable community, mentorship, friendship and musicianship that she received from her Suzuki upbringing with as many students and families as she can.

Richard Mooney

Richard MooneyRick Mooney grew up in a musical family where he began studying piano at age 5 and cello at age 8. He studied Suzuki teaching methods with Phyllis Glass at USC and traveled to Japan in the spring of 1976. As a specialist in the Suzuki method of teaching, Mooney has been a guest teacher at many institutes and workshops throughout the United States, Canada, Asia, England, Australia, and New Zealand. He has been active with the Suzuki Association of the Americas, serving on the Board of Directors, on the Cello Committee and writing for the American Suzuki Journal. He is also the founder and director of the National Cello Institute which sponsors a Summer Institute, a Winter Workshop, and publishes music for cello ensembles.


Seth Himmelhoch

Himmelhock SethSeth Himmelhoch is a classical guitarist and teacher based in Teaneck, New Jersey. Mr. Himmelhoch has made solo appearances at such venues as the 92nd St. Y, Alice Tully Hall, Wagner College in Staten Island, and St. Paul's Chapel in NYC.  He has performed as a member of the flute and guitar duo, Duo Cavatina, which was awarded a debut recital at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie as winners of the Artists International Auditions.

A prominent member of the Suzuki Guitar Community, Himmelhoch serves as chair of the Guitar Development Committee of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and is a Teacher Trainer of the Suzuki Guitar School.

Himmelhoch has released the solo CD Seth Himmelhoch Guitar Recital and he appears on the Duo Cavatina CD Songs and Dances of the Americas.

Himmelhoch is director of classical guitar studies at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., and he is the founder and director of the Suzuki guitar program at the JCC/Thurnauer School of Music in Tenafly, N.J.

Repertoire Lists

Students should be at least 4 years of age and able to play the fourth piece in Book 1 on their instrument to participate in the weekend workshop.


Book Repertoire
1 All
2 Chorus, Hunters’ Chorus, Bourree, Two Grenadiers, Witches’ Dance, Lully Gavotte
3 Martini Gavotte, Humoresque, Gavotte in D Major
4 Seitz Concerto No. 5, 1st mvt, Vivaldi Concerto in A minor-1st mvt, Bohm Perpetual Motion
5 Vivaldi Concerto in G minor-1st mvt, Country Dance, Veracini Gigue
6 Handel FM-2nd mvt, Fiocco Allegro, Rameau Gavotte 
7 Mozart Minuet, Bach Concerto in A minor-1st mvt
8 Eccles Sonata in G minor, 1st and 2nd mvts, Tambourin


Book Repertoire
1 All
2 Chorus, Bourree, Gavotte from Mignon, Lully Gavotte
3 Martini Gavotte, Humoresque, Mozart Minuet
4 Seitz Concerto No. 2, 3rd mvt, Telemann single and double concerti
5 Country Dance, Moto Perpetuo, Nina, Seitz Concerto in C minor
6 Marais La Folia, Hungarian Dance, JC Bach Concerto-1st mvt
7 Schubert Ave Maria, Corelli Allegro
8 Bruch Romanze


Book Repertoire
1 All
2 Long, Long Ago, Minuet 1, Chorus, March in G, Moon Over the Ruined Castle
3 Berceuse, Lully Gavotte, Scherzo, Gavotte in C minor, La Cinquantaine
4 Allegro and Rondo from Sonata in C Major by Breval, Chanson Triste
5 Danse Rustique, Goltermann Rondo from Concerto in G
6 Tarantella, The Swan
7 Eccles Sonata, 1st and 2nd movements


Book Repertoire
1 All
2 Waltz, Andantino-Carcassi, Andante-Carcassi, A Toye, Allegro, Long Long Ago
3 Celeste y Blanco, Etude-Coste, Waltz from Sonata No. 9, Nonesuch, Greensleeves, Packington’s Pound
4 La Folia, Lesson for Two Lutes, Waltz Allegro, Lesson, Siciliana
5 Allegro Vivace, Minuet and Trio, Maria Luisa: Mazurka, Vals Espanol
6 Bouree, Guardarme las Vacas, Damas Etude
7 Canarios, Sonata, Vivaldi Concerto-Mvt II
8 To be announced
9 To be announced

Suzuki Workshop FAQ

Who is the workshop for?

The workshop is for students who have polished the fourth piece in Book 1 and up.  A beginner in Book 1 is welcome to come to watch, but is a little too young to participate. Advanced violin students will have special group sessions (technique-related and repertoire-based) on Saturday with clinician Thomas Wermuth.

What are the benefits of studying with a different teacher for one a day?

Every teacher has a different perspective, different training, and different experiences that influence their teaching. While it is important to have one primary teacher to guide your child, a lot can be learned from working with a different teacher occasionally, either at a workshop or at a summer institute.

To what extent should my student master the pieces on the repertoire list?

Review is an important pillar of the Suzuki method. The repertoire list is a guideline of what pieces may be worked on in the repertoire classes in the workshop. Please prepare all of the pieces your child has learned to the best of your ability. If a piece is played that your child is not comfortable playing, they should sit down and listen during that piece.

Tell me more about the master classes. Who can participate?

The master classes are reserved for intermediate and advanced guitar, violin, viola and cello students studying with Hartt Community Division faculty members. Students must be recommended by their private teacher to participate in the master classes. Master class observations are open at no charge to all HCD students.

Tell me more about enrichment classes.

Guest clinician Susan Reed will offer creative cross-instrument improvisation classes and inspiring songs/stories classes. Students will be assigned to one of these two classes, based upon their level and age. To read more about Susan’s diverse expertise as teacher, multi-instrumental performer, and storyteller, visit

If you have any questions, please get in touch with us at 860.768.4451 or