I play violin professionally and have been teaching violin and viola lessons since 2013. My repertoire includes: Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto Mvt. 1, Paganini Caprices 5, 21, and 24, Ysaÿe Sonata No. 3 "Ballade", Bach "Chaconne" (as well as many other movements of solo Bach), the first movements of Mozart's Violin Concerti 3-5, and more. I have studied with Jaroslaw Lis of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
In 2017, I earned my B.S. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Connecticut, summa cum laude with a 3.96 GPA.
I think I was always meant to live a musical life. I always gravitated towards music as a kid. I was lucky enough to have a mom who cared about furthering my talents; she started me in piano lessons when I was six. When we moved a year or so later, I stopped piano lessons and soon started playing the violin in school. I would always tinker around with the piano (I still do to this day - I swear that just by having a piano around, you learn to play it!), but my main focus became the violin.
I started playing violin when I was 8, and by the time I was 12, I was really serious about it. I started taking lessons with Christopher Payne, from whom I learned most of my solid technique (thanks Chris!). In 2009, I won the Greater Waterbury Youth Symphony Concerto Competition, playing Vivaldi's "Summer" from "The Four Seasons". I then performed the piece as a soloist with the orchestra.
For my first two years of high school, I attended the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, where I met Jaroslaw Lis. Jarek was my main string teacher and we had quartet practice four times a week, during which I learned so much about the dynamics of a string quartet. Jarek went to the Yale School of Music and currently plays for the Hartford Symphony. He's also a really great teacher. I was very lucky be taught by him almost daily.
As soon as I graduated high school, I began teaching private violin lessons. I also started school at UConn. Initially unsure of where I wanted to concentrate my academic studies, I decided in my freshman year that I wanted to audition for the Hartt School of Music at the University of Hartford. I auditioned in 2014, playing Pablo Sarasate's "Zigeunerweisen", Paganini's Caprice No. 5, and a movement of Bach. Though I was accepted with a $10,000 scholarship, I declined the offer and finished a math degree at UConn, graduating summa cum laude in 2017.
A few months after my graduation, my teaching suddenly doubled to over 40 students a week. Since I enjoy teaching so much, I decided to stick with it, and that's what I've been doing since.
I've learned so much since I started teaching. When you first start out, you realize that just because you know how to play does not mean that you know how to teach! I've spent a lot of time figuring out how best to teach this difficult instrument. The more experience I have, the more confident I feel. I've also learned that teaching violin is not predominantly about music; rather, it's about connecting with my students and understanding what they need most to learn. Since we're all so different, this can be challenging at times, but I believe it's what makes music lessons really special. That and having fun!
I feel very blessed to have my students. Seeing them each week, sometimes for years and years, is such a privilege. I love watching them grow and learn; I love that I get to be a part of that.