The Suzuki Method

What is the Suzuki Method?

The Suzuki Method of music education was begun in the middle of the twentieth century by Japanese violinist Shinichi Suzuki.

Dr Suzuki believed that the best and most effective way to learn music is to be exposed to it from a very early age. He calls this the "mother tongue" method - young children learn to play an instrument in the same way that they learn their own language: by listening, absorbing, and copying.

In the beginning, the parent is given the first lessons on the instrument, while the child watches. In this way, the child's interest is aroused by its natural desire to copy the parent. This also gives the parent an understanding of the technical difficulties that playing a musical instrument involves.

When the child begins learning, it is by ear - music reading is not taught till later. Again this ties in with the idea of the "mother tongue": one could not imagine trying to teach an infant to read before it can speak - similarly the young musician does not learn to read music until it has begun to understand music aurally. In general, the age at which a child is taught to read music is the same as when it is learning to read books in its own language.

Dr Suzuki's philosophy is one of "Talent Education": he does not believe that only certain people are born with "a gift", or "talent", rather that each child has infinite potential. He believes that in teaching the child music, he is in fact creating a medium for the emotinal and spiritual growth of the child.

Suzuki in Sydney, Australia

The Suzuki method has been active in Sydney for many years. Australia has one of the largest Suzuki Associations in the world, after Japan and the USA.

With teachers all over the Sydney metropolitan and country areas, the NSW Suzuki association has taught thousands of students of violin, piano, cello, flute, viola and more recently harp and guitar.

Students have the opportunity to meet with other students of their own level in regular workshops, as well as the chance to observe outstanding students in concerts. The annual Graduation Concert is a chance for all students to participate in a performance in the Sydney Opera House.

For more information, please contact:

Suzuki Talent Education Association
Of Australia(NSW)Inc.

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