Kathy Ferris Studio

Kathy Ferris Studio


About this pro

It is a pleasure for me to offer experienced, broad-based education on violin and viola. I have been able to send students to Mannes School of Music, New York, the Peabody Conservatory and area colleges here in Metro Detroit, including University of Michigan, Michigan State University and other such respected institutions. But just as great a delight is working with a wide variety of students; young children, adult beginners, polishing Middle and High Schoolers. My varied teaching background means I can and do adapt the teaching approach to the individual.

My own background includes Manhattan School of Music, New York, the Mozarteum Akademie in Salzburtg and individual studies withj the concert master of the Cleveland Orchestra (Daniel Majeske) and Eudice Shapiro at USC.

Here in the Detroit metro area I have performed with the Detroit Symphony, the Michigan Opera Theater Orchestra and served as concertmaster at one time or another with most of the regional and community orchestras in the area. In my professional career I have perfomed in New York, Mexico City (Mex) Honolulu, California, Minneapolis, etc. I have played most of the significant touring Broadway shows and with major figures in the Pop, Rock and Jazz areas.

Private teaching is a delight. Working with young children, adult beginners, serious older students, coaching chamber music, acting a Music Coordinator for a multi-campus independant inner city school sytem; all have been rewarding.

Watching my students grow as people and musicians in confidence and maturity; how rich and satisfying a life!

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Southfield, MI 48033
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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

First I discover about the student as a person, likes, extra activites, sports, etc.  For the adults, what profession, what interests, what expectations. I find where and how deep the interest in the violin/viola is ahd where the student (not necessarily the parent) wants to go with this project.

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

I have had the privilege of studying with major figures in the music world ajnd playing with major organizaitons. I have also established or developed sustainability in 16 elementary, middle and High Schols schools in my metro area.  As a performer I have played with major national Classical, Pops, Broadway, Jazz and alterrnative music figures in the U S, Europe and Mexico. My schooling, as indicated in my bio and web site, includes Manhattan School of Music, NY, studies and performance positions in Salzburg, New York, Cleveland and USC.

More information in these areas is included in my website: kathyferrisstudios.com

Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

My prices are set at $30.00/half hour, $45.00/hour. Payment is expected at the beginning of the month. 24 hours' cancellation notice is required to avoid charges for missed lessons.

I am very sympathetic to genuine challenges.

How did you get started teaching?

I grew up in Honolulu. I began teaching privately through a program with the University iof Hawaii Music Department at the age of 13. Since then I have taught at the University of Hawaii, the University of Louisville (KY) and in every city I have worked and performed in, including Louisville, New York, Minneapolis, Mexico City (Mex) New Orleans, etc. I have toaught young children, teen-agers, adult beginners, coached soloists and chamber ensembles to prepare for auditions and performances. This started when people came to me as a youngster and asked me to work with their kids, at that time my peers.

What types of students have you worked with?

Teaching is a rich and varied experience. I have taught young children using the Suzuki system, which is also applicabe to students of any age. I can teach in English and Spanish. I have taught brilliant young people who have successfully gone on to major in both Music Education and Performance. I particfularly love to coach Chamber Music and have had the privilege to watch my ensembles continue at the college level. I have worked wioth young children, teen-agers, adults beginners, retired adults retunring to the instrument, special needs children and adults. It is a rich life!

Describe a recent event you are fond of.

My "Chamber Strings" an elite chamber ensemble of a dozen honors Middle School string players gave a chamber performance of Vivaldi's "Gloria" to a standing ovation.

For myself, I have performed the Concertmaster solos to "Scherezade," "Cappricio Espagnol," the Concertino solos to Bach's "St. Matthew Passion," and many equally rewarding presentations. To say whic h was the greatest experience is impossible, but watching my students succeed is indeed greater than any personal performance triumph

What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

1. Do you understand them when the describe what they want you to do.

2. Can you relate to them as a person?

3. Do they have high, but realistic, expectations for you.

4. Do they understand that you are either very serious and want to move on at a significant level, or that this experience is essentially recreational and meant to be primarily enjoyable. Either direction is entirely legitimate. The teacher must be aware of this. You should feel free to talk about this with the teacher.

What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?

1. Do I feel this teacher will really listen to me.

2. Do I feel this person will encourage me appropriately and develope me in a way I find satisfying, appropriate and pleasureable.

3.Do I feel this teacher has a real "teacher's heart" or this is a "back-up plan" professionally for this person.

4. Do I feel this person will take me seriously, regardless of where I want to go with my violin or viola

Lessons offered