Patti Tryhus has been teaching violin and viola at the Mankato Suzuki School of Music since 1979 and been a director since 1988. After studying violin for four years with Marilyn Bos at MSU, she received training in the Suzuki method at the American Suzuki Institute in Stevens Point Wisconsin and attended numerous workshops and conferences over the years. She observes that “the best Suzuki teachers follow Dr. Suzuki’s lead in setting a high standard for tone while having fun with the children. They are always figuring out better ways to teach.”
Patti played fiddle and sang for many years in a band with her husband Steve and played violin for nearly 25 years in the Mankato Symphony Orchestra. She still performs with Steve for various occasions. They raised two musical sons, Peder and John, and Patti remembers, “In our family it all started with singing and listening to good music. That was the easy part, the mother tongue method. The difficult part was setting aside enough time to be patient and feel creative with our home practice. I know it’s not easy. But watching other parents through the years, I see evidence that with persistence and love, much can be accomplished!”
Marilyn Bos holds degrees in violin performance from Oberlin Conservatory and the University of illinois. She was a first violinist in three professional orchestras before becoming violin professor at Minnesota State University/Mankato.
Now retired from the school, she continues to teach violin in her home. (She is a nice person except to Yankee fans.)
Mary Flanagan has a Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance, having recently graduated from Minnesota State University where she studied with acclaimed violinist Lydia Miller and violist Tyler Sieh. Mary is a child of the Suzuki method, her parents starting her at the tender age of six. Over the years she has had excellent instruction from numerous teachers, most notably Paula Anderson of the New Ulm Suzuki School. In middle and high school Mary won positions in the Mid Level Honors Orchestra for three consecutive years and to the MN All State Honors Orchestra. At age 17 Mary won a position with the Mankato Symphony Orchestra, where you can still see her playing first violin. Mary also began teaching at age 17 and has experience teaching players of all ages, including the elderly. She is a licensed Suzuki violin teacher, having received training in Wisconsin and Michigan with well known Suzuki trainers. She loves being a teacher because she agrees with Dr. Suzuki that any person can learn and because she believes that playing and teaching help her be the best version of herself!
Shirley Hanneman was first taught by her mother in a Suzuki-like environment. She then took lessons with another teacher in the Milwaukee area, and at the age of 12 began organ lessons and soon started playing for church services. She continued her studies in piano and organ at Martin Luther College, followed by courses at the University of Iowa. She is a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music in the National Music Teacher’s Association and co-founded the Cedar Rapids music association.
Shirley was an adjudicator for many Iowa Music Teacher competitions and her students regularly won local and state contests. One student placed runner up in the talent portion of the National American Miss competition.
Shirley has been a Suzuki teacher for 30 years and also taught Kindermusik for many years. Several years ago she and her husband Daryl moved to New Ulm where he is a professor at Martin Luther College. They enjoy traveling, especially to visit one daughter in San Francisco and the other daughter and her family in Atlanta.
Shirley is happy to be teaching at the Mankato Suzuki School. She especially enjoys teaching three and four year olds, giving them a solid start in their musical journey.
Ruth Greve followed her desire to become a piano instructor, trained at MacPhail Conservatory and began gaining experience as a teacher in 1968. She taught at Immanuel High School and College in Eau Claire, WI and then at her home studio after marriage and a move to Mankato.
When she and husband Lloyd discovered the Suzuki Method and the Mankato Suzuki School of Music in 1984, they enrolled their three children in the program.
Joyfully, she embraced initial education for the method at the American Suzuki Institute in St. Point, WI. 1986 was the beginning of 17 years of teaching with the school, codirecting with Patti Tryhus for about 13 years and doing continuing education at Suzuki Institutes.. This was followed in 2003 by teaching in her home studio for 10 years. She again teaches students from the school now, still at her home. As Dr. Suzuki said, “When I am 99 I shall be a teacher. (!!)
Her years since age 11 have been filled with playing organ for church, accompanying choirs, plays, playing background music at events and one of her favorites…. accompanying the Brown and Bigelow Chorus in St. Paul.
Anja Scheidel has been teaching Musikgarten classes since 2001. While her two daughters went through highschool, Anja took a break of teaching to spend more time with their activities and to help out in the family business.
Anja was born and raised in Germany and took classes at the so called “Musikalische Frueherziehung (Early Childhood Music Education) at a young age, followed by piano lessons at the age of 6.
She went to a Waldorf School where the curriculum emphasizes the role of imagination in learning, striving to integrate holistically the intellectual, practical, and artistic development of a student. This unique education which also was carried on at home, shaped Anja's approach to life.
While studying nutrition in college in Germany, Anja sang in choirs, taught piano and played piano at various events. She has completed all levels of the Musikgarten certification and is a member of ECMMA (Early Childhood Music and Movement Association).
Anja believes that all children have musical aptitude and that early childhood is the opportune time to begin develop this potential in an active, joyful and developmentally appropriate way. Her classes promote music literacy, singing, rhythmic skills, aural perception, language development, motor coordination, ensemble skills and social interaction while awakening the child's imagination. She believes that this program is the ideal way to prepare a child for later instrumental study or to be a more perceptive listener or thinker in the arts and in other disciplines. Indeed, studies have shown that children who learn music excel their ”non-musical peers” in all academic disciplines (not just in math as previously thought) and are socially more developed and mature.
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