I cannot remember a time without music. When I was about four years old, I remember singing and dancing on a portable stage brought into the neighborhood.
My dad played the trombone and sang, my grandfather sang, my grandmother owned a piano. I never heard her play it but I had a great time on it.  During a family history research I found a great grandfather who was praised for his booming singing bass voice. I started piano lessons at the age of seven. Three years later I joined the band playing the clarinet. When our school started an orchestra program I found myself lugging a string bass around. Before I knew any theory, I was always trying to “write” music by taking measures from my piano music and turning them into “my” pieces. My high school band director offered after school theory and arranging instruction to several interested students. Music was so important in the small Michigan township school I attended that four students from our high school graduating class went on to the University to become music teachers.


I lived in a very small town in Michigan where classical music was rarely played.  The first time I heard Beethoven was on a double date. The other couple was listening to a concert on the car radio. I hadn’t the faintest idea what I was listening to but I certainly got the idea it was something I needed to know more about. That, however, didn’t happen until years later because rock ‘n roll was becoming the rage

When I started piano lessons we didn’t own a piano. Fortunately, neighbors a block away let me use theirs. When my mother located a

piano owned by my aunt’s mother-in-law, we had to place it in what was to be the kitchen of the house my father was constructing above the basement where we lived. The windows and doors were yet to be installed so it wasn’t the most comfortable place to be, especially when the weather got colder. Many times my enthusiasm for practicing was lacking when I thought of having to sit at that piano in the cold. And sit I did, on an old high chair. We got the piano, but the mother-in-law didn’t want to give up the bench, which she kept for storage. The piano eventually found its way into my bedroom and finally the living room.

Soon I found myself performing for all kinds of reasons; Sunday school, high school choir accompanist, recitals, and even church organist. I was encouraged by many to pursue a teaching career in music. So with a music scholarship in hand and about ten piano students under my tutelage, off I went.

After graduating from Western Michigan and Wayne State Universities, I spent the next part of my life teaching in a public school. I started out as a vocal music teacher and eventually found myself out on the football field with the high school marching band. I soon found that this activity just wasn’t my cup of tea. I really wasn’t cut out for the weekly mud baths that the Michigan weather is famous for creating on a football field in the fall. And my ears couldn’t quite reconcile the sound of band music the day after an orchestral rehearsal in which I was still playing the bass.

In the meantime, I discovered the Suzuki violin method and started my youngest daughter on the violin. The following spring found us at a Suzuki Institute camp where I discovered a similar approach to the piano. This created in me such new excitement towards the music I had always loved that I embraced it with all my heart and started converting all my younger piano students over to the Suzuki approach. My studio soon became a home for over forty students.

My other interests include computer technology, genealogy, and barbershop singing.