Music is what feelings sound like.
~ Author Unknown
The sounds of Music exists in every space of everyday. Think about it, how often in the course of your day can you not hear Music?
The Suzuki Method is the most effective way of learning to play the Violin or Viola. One learns by ear and can start as young as the age of 2 years old. The method is most ideal for Adults who always wanted to learn but thought they may have missed their chance. The Suzuki Method is comprised of some of the following principals -
Students listen to the recording of the pieces they will play before they learn to play them. Suzuki felt that, just as in conventional schooling, books are introduced to children only after they have been speaking the language for several years, so written music should only be introduced to the music student once they have been playing for sufficient time. This develops a sophisticated ear for pitch and tone which enables a child to play with greater sensitivity.
Students of the Suzuki Method stay learning a piece long after they have mastered the notes. They are taught to play from memory which is seen as the starting point for work on proper technique and musicality. They are encouraged to review old pieces where, unencumbered by having to learn new notes, they can work on new technical skills or merely reinforce and sharpen the skills they have already acquired.
All Suzuki Students learn and follow the same sequence of material. Each instrument has its own repertoire which has been designed to take a child from the very simplest piece (in the Suzuki Method this will be variations on ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’) to the Grade 8 level and beyond.
Children learn to speak their language competently because they speak it every day. So music should be practised every day. Of course, this kind of commitment is difficult to make and Suzuki understood this. He therefore said:
“Only practise on the days you eat.”
Parents have an active role in the Suzuki Method. Rather than being seen as a liability and kept out of lessons, parents are expected to attend lessons, to take notes and to practise with their children, most fully in the early years. It is not necessary for a parent to be able to play the instrument themselves. The teacher will show them all they need to know in order to help their child. Indeed, many parents have been so inspired helping their children, they have taken up music study themselves.
6. Group Practice
In addition to an individual music lesson, Suzuki students learn in larger groups. Ideally, they would attend a group lesson once a week. Here children benefit from the social aspects of playing together, learn from the different, sometimes higher, abilities of others and benefit from the freedom of releasing their own individual sound into a larger whole.
7. Playing in Public
Not only do the children become used to playing in public by having their individual lessons observed, they also are given the opportunity to play in concerts/recitals organised by their teacher. The Suzuki student’s music is not, therefore, of restrictive benefit to them. In overcoming any fear of performance, the Suzuki student can use their ability to enrich the lives of others.