My love of the piano began at an early age.  I started traditional lessons at five years old and have enjoyed playing all my life.  In the beginning I struggled with music reading. I learned my music lessons by ear.

     However, my lessons continued to be focused on reading only.  Since I was never encouraged to listen to my pieces or to recordings of pianists playing classical music, I grew up thinking that somehow developing the ear was not a legitimate part of music education.  Since I was so motivated,  I eventually learned to read.

     I practiced diligently and advanced quickly.  However, without any piano technique training (posture, balance, finger movement) and no demonstration, I wasn't able to control my fingers.  I couldn't master anything so I never felt "ready" or confident to play for people.  I developed pain in my arms and fingers as I practiced more, but never told anyone, thinking that was a sacrifice that all pianists made as they played advanced repertoire.

     I continued piano study at Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and received a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance.  During my senior year I encountered the Suzuki method of teaching music.  I attended a lecture/demonstration by the Japanese Suzuki violin teacher who had studied under the founder, Dr. Shinichi Suzuki.  When the teacher explained Suzuki philosophy and I heard her students play with such amazing technical facility, and so very musically from their hearts, I knew this was what I wanted to pursue after graduation!  

     My dream came true when I had the privilege of being one of the first Americans to study with Dr. Haruko Kataoka, co-founder of the Suzuki Piano method, and with Dr. Suzuki at the Talent Education Institute in Matsumoto, Japan.  Thanks to Dr. Kataoka I received the solid technical foundation I needed to play with control, beautiful expression, and without pain.  I pass this on to all my students. 

     After Japan, I pioneered the first Suzuki Piano program for students and teachers in Oberlin, Ohio.  In following years I pioneered programs in my studios in:  Bloomington, IN; Indianapolis, IN; Richmond, KY; and EKU music dept. preparatory division; Greenville, NC; presently I give piano lessons in Huntersville and the Lake Norman area of NC.  I also traveled to 19 states and Canada teaching at short-term institutes as a certified Teacher Trainer with SAA (Suzuki Assoc. of the Americas).  My initial Parent Education program was presented at a National Suzuki Teacher's Conference.  

     My sons were raised in Suzuki method, one in violin from age 4, and one in piano from age 7.  I  had the joy of seeing both sons develop not only outstanding musical ability, but character traits of sensitivity, discipline, and endurance.  I know how to help parents assist with music lessons.

    My passion is to help develop the whole person - each unique, in an atmosphere of love and encouragement, using music as the means to that end. 

​I teach Suzuki and traditional method piano lessons in Huntersville, NC.


Piano Lessons in Huntersville, NC

Piano with ms. gretchen

Piano lessons in Huntersville, NC