Suzuki and Fiddle

Whether you’re interested in learn to play the fiddle by ear, or in developing your skills in the renowned Suzuki method for violin and viola, the Community Music and Dance Academy can help you.


The Suzuki curriculum provides instruction in both group and individual settings. Suzuki instructors include some of the most talented and hard-working teachers in Northern Arizona.

As a student in the Suzuki program, you will have the opportunity to perform in recital and throughout the community every semester.

Registration form (Group class and workshops) 
Registration form (Parent/beginner class) 

Parental involvement

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The Suzuki philosophy teaches that parents should be involved in their children’s music learning just as they are involved in their learning to read, write, or do math. The academy offers parent classes that will help allow you as a parent to understand the Suzuki philosophy and the role you will play in as your child is learning to play.

Learn more about the Suzuki philosophy.


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Suzuki students fall into one of the following three levels:

  • Level 1: Beginning students to the middle of Book 2—includes 30 minute lessons, group and Orff classes, and recitals
  • Level 2: Players in the middle of Book 2 through the middle of Book 4—includes 45 minute lessons, group and ensemble classes, and recitals
  • Level 3: Musicians in the middle of Book 4 and above—includes 60 minute lessons, performance group, and two accompanist rehearsals for recitals

Program structure

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Parent/beginner classes 


Group lessons for beginning parents provide foundational knowledge of the Suzuki philosophy. In addition, the parent will learn how to handle the instrument properly, achieve proper posture, and develop the skill to produce a clear, resounding tone.

  • Parents MUST register through the Academy prior to participation
  • Classes take place on Thursday evenings from 6:30-7:30 in Room 125
  • Class on Thursday, September 16th and Thursday, October 28th will attend the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra’s dress rehearsal in Ardrey Auditorium at 7:00pm

Individual lessons 

“The Suzuki Triangle” is composed of the teacher, parent, and child. This triangle forms the basis for learning. Every child will eventually have an individual lesson with a teacher and the parent will be involved as an adjunct teacher.

  • After completion of the Parent Orientation Class, a teacher will contact the parent to schedule an individual lesson time.
  • All lessons will be held at the Performing and Fine Arts Building
  • A parent should be present at all private lessons for elementary age students
  • Parents and students are encouraged to arrive early to observe any individual lessons
  • A 24 hour notice is necessary for a teacher to reschedule a lesson. Please contact the Academy Office (928-523-1865) or your teacher if cancellation is necessary
  • A missed lesson without notice will not be made up

Weekly group lessons 

The main focus of group class is on review of repertoire, performance etiquette, note reading for appropriate levels, and techniques necessary to contribute and participate in ensemble playing.

  • Group Lessons take place on Thursday afternoons
  • Parents should attend
  • Regular attendance is imperative and expected

Informal recitals 

Teachers provide an opportunity to have an informal recital experience for their students at least once a semester.

  • An accompanist will be provided for all students
  • Instructors will guide students through the details of rehearsing with an accompanist
  • Recitals are in a classroom venue from 5:30-6:30pm on Thursdays

Formal recitals 

Formal Recitals are designed to offer an opportunity for a student to perform in a music hall in a formal setting for their family, friends, and peers.

  • All recitals take place in Ashurst Hall
  • Students and families are expected to stay for the entire recital
  • Students are expected to dress appropriately for a formal recital

Community performances 

There are many opportunities for Suzuki students to perform throughout the Northern Arizona community as a group.

  • Group performances provide a safe venue for children to develop poise and presence for audiences
  • Repertoire performed is most often drawn from the Suzuki Books

Anyone can participate, though not every student will play every piece based on the varied review.

Supply List

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Things you need for private lessons 

  • Violin/Viola, bow, rosin, shoulder rest or sponge (remember this one!!!), cleaning cloth (should remain in case)
  • Parent—especially if student is young or in early books
  • Suzuki Violin/Viola books as well as etude, scale, and reading books
  • Tuning fork
  • Nail clippers
  • Notebook for notes and assignments
  • Pencil
  • Recording device (dependent on teacher’s instructions)
  • Extra set of strings (keep at least one extra set in case)

Things you need at home 

  • Suzuki CDs
  • Music stand
  • Quiet place to practice
  • Metronome
  • Music dictionary
  • Appropriate performance attire (black pants, white shirt or blouse, black shoes, black socks or hoes)

Things you need for group lessons 

  • Pencil
  • Three-ring notebook for handout with paper for notes
  • Music stand
  • Parent

Instrument care 

  • NEVER leave instrument in the car for a long period of time (e.g. going to work and leaving instrument in the car for a lesson that afternoon)
  • DO NOT expose instrument to any form of extreme heat or cold
  • DO NOT get your instrument wet
  • DO NOT eat food and then play without washing hands
  • DO NOT place the instrument on the case
  • DO wipe rosin off the instrument every day after you play
  • DO buy a Dampit (humidifier) which can be found in music stores for $5-10

Music stores 

Cedar Music (Flagstaff)

Arizona Music Pro (Flagstaff)

Jeffrey Robinson (Flagstaff)

Robertson and Sons

Southwest Strings

Shar Products


Our fiddle classes are designed to teach you Irish fiddle tunes by ear. You will get to learn the different tune types in Irish music as well as ornaments and bowings that make them distinctly Irish.

Each class will consist of listening, reviewing previously learned tunes, and learning new tunes and techniques.

Students should be in mid-Book 2 (Two Grenadiers) or higher to participate.

Registration form