Every child can enjoy
a musical life.
We'll discover it together.

Lessons take place at my home studio in
Havertown, PA. Keep reading to learn more about lessons and how to get started.




"Heather is a wonderful mix of patience and passion. My son loves his lessons,
loves playing the double bass, and loves his teacher."

- Audra Shaiko

"Thank you for being Aydan's teacher. It is really quite incredible to see and hear how much his playing has improved thanks to your guidance and encouragement."

- Lea Gooneratne



I teach double bass lessons using the Sukuki Method and the George Vance Progressive Repertoire. Both are based on the concept that young children learn to speak their native language by listening to it many times and by repeating individual sounds over and over. Playing by ear and from memory allows students to focus on musical expression and good technique. We work on one thing at a time and review frequently so that each technical and musical concept feels easy. As soon as children are learning to learn to read and write letters, we start to read music as well.

Very young beginners may spend a year learning songs and skills in the “Pre-Twinkle” phase. Older beginners and those who got started in school lessons generally move through this repertoire fairly rapidly with consistent practice. We cover a wide range of positions quickly so that students get used to navigating the entire fingerboard.

Students who have moved beyond the Progressive Repertoire dig deep into double bass solo and orchestral literature to further develop technical facility, musical expression, and artistic interests.

When you join the studio, I will ask you to read a series of emails with important information about these methods. I'll also share a list of books about the Suzuki method that you may enjoy reading. In recent years, I’ve enrolled the entire studio in the Suzuki Association of America’s “Parents as Partners Online” video series free of charge. And I sometimes send articles or websites that I think are helpful via my studio newsletters. I also maintain a small inventory of fractional-sized basses available at a low rental fee for children under 10.



The viol (or viola da gamba in Italian) is a bowed string instrument that was popular from the 1500s to the mid-1700s. It has six strings and seven frets. While it comes in different sizes like the violin family does, all sizes are played held in the lap and bowed horizontally with a relaxed underhand hold. The frets give every note a clear sound and help with finger placement.

The viol and its repertoire are stunningly beautiful and enjoy a revival that continues to grow. Any experience with a string instrument can eventually transfer to a different one (such as violin, cello, or double bass). Because the viol’s frets help the player find the notes, it can be  enjoyable to play very quickly. They can also help students develop a good ear.

All of these elements make the viol a wonderful instrument for children - and indeed, children in the Renaissance were often taught to play it at home for family music-making or in choir schools! Much music for the viol was written by the best composers to be played by amateurs in noble homes, so it is simple and beautiful. Children are attracted to the instrument’s very resonant sound.

I teach viol to children by adapting the Suzuki approach, using appropriate repertoire for the instrument. I currently have a set of instruments on loan from the Viola da Gamba Society of America (VdGSA) that I loan to students at no cost. Parents are responsible for insuring and maintaining the instrument and replacing it if destroyed.




Private Lessons

Weekly instruction in double bass or viola da gamba, ages 3+. See FAQ for more information.


As-needed early music coaching for advanced players and professionals. Contact me to discuss your interests.

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Get in touch on the contact page. It’s helpful to include the student’s age, grade, how long they’ve been playing, and any current musical goals.


I’ll send you my studio information, policy, and rates for you to review so that you can ask any questions you may have via email or phone.


Schedule a complimentary 30-minute interview/lesson to discover if we’re a good fit for each other. Parents should plan to attend.


We’ll discuss logistics and schedule to get you set up as the newest studio member or secure your spot on my waiting list.



Please reach out! I'd be glad to help.