Viola Studio Syllabus

Course Description and Expectations

This course offers private viola/violin lessons to music majors and minors. Certain others may also be eligible with the instructor’s and music department’s permission. Academic credit and length of lessons are determined according to departmental guidelines.

Lessons will include one-on-one work on technique and viola/violin repertoire. Topics to be covered include scales, etudes, technical exercises, solo repertoire and orchestral literature. The instructor will determine the requirements for each student according to that individual’s abilities, and will discuss these requirements with the student at the beginning of the semester.

My expectation is for students to prepare their weekly assignments. The assignment will be directly proportional to the student’s enrollment (major/minor). This does not mean that students who are non-majors will be excused from doing the necessary work. For non-majors, it is also very important to learn well the basics of viola or violin playing especially if they are going to become educators. My expectations for performance majors are high. The competition is huge in the “real world” there are many wonderful players and my goal is nothing less than to prepare you to be competitive. I expect majors to work hard and be fully committed to the music learning process. I am ready to prepare anyone with a strong work ethic to be competitive in this profession.

Recommended Materials for Viola Students:


Scales: up to 1 flat and 1 sharp (Flesch System Revised) 
Technical Exercises: Sevcik, Casorti 
Etudes: Kayser, Mazas, Campagnioli, 
Pieces: Bach Solo Suites, Vivaldi Sonatas, Beethoven Romanze, Wieniawski Reverie, Kalliwoda Nocturnes, Glazunov Elegy, etc 
Concertos: Telemann, Hoffmaister,etc.


Scales: Up to 3 sharps and 3 flats (Flesch System Revised) 
Technical Exercises: Sevcik, Casorti 
Etudes: Campagnioli, Rode, Dancla, 
Pieces: Schubert Arpeggione Sonata, Bach Solo Suites, Max Reger Solo Sonatas Rust Sonata in F-Major, Glinka Sonata in D-minor, Schumann Fairy Tale Op.113 
Concertos: Handel- Casadesus, Johann Christian Bach, etc.


Scales: Up to 5 sharps and 5 flats (Flesch System Revised) 
Technical Exercises: Sevcik,Casorti 
Etudes: Kreutzer, Campagnioli, Paganini 
Pieces: Brahms Sonatas, Hindemith, Max Reger Solo Sonatas 
Bach: Sonatas and Partitas for Violin Solo (transcription for Viola) Rimsky-Korsakoff ,etc. 
Concertos: Haydn, Stamitz, Walton, Berlioz, David


Scales: All scales (Flesch System Revised) 
Technical Exercises: Sevcik,Casorti 
Etudes: Vieux, Paganini, Dancla, Campagnioli, Dont 
Pieces: Rebecca Clarke Sonata, Bach, Hindemith, Wieuxtemps Sonata Op.36 
Bach: Sonatas and Partitas for Violin Solo (transcription for Viola) Paganini Moto Perpetuo or La Campanella, Britten Lachrymae, 
Concertos: Berlioz, David, Bartok, Hindemith,

Orchestral Excerpts and Sight-Reading

Every student should be familiar with major orchestral literature. Therefore, periodically each student will receive copies of orchestral excerpts which they will prepare to perform in studio classes or during regular lesson time. Students also have to improve their sight-reading skills, therefore sight-reading is going to be part of the lessons.

Recommended Daily Practice Schedule

Warm-Up slowly, take breaks, and stretch frequently Practice 2-3 times per day to build endurance rather than one long session 
Scales: 60-90 minutes slowly with special care for intonation 
Technical Exercises: 40-50 minutes 
Etudes: 60 minutes 
Concertos and Pieces: 120-160 minutes 
Try to do the technical part of your practicing (scales, technical exercises) in the morning. The best technical results can be achieved when you are relaxed.

Excused and Unexcused Absences

Attendance of your lesson is mandatory. You must speak to me prior to missing a lesson in order for it to be excused. In the event of illness, a written or answering machine message is acceptable if it is received prior to the missed lesson. Do not come to your lesson sick! Stay home, take time to get well, and avoid giving it to your peers and teachers. Get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water and take vitamin C. 

Juries Grades

All students enrolled in my studio, majors and non-majors, are required to play jury-recitals at the end of the semester. Students will be expected to dress formally for this occasion. Students will also be expected to hire an accompanist for this event. 
A list of available accompanists will be provided to you upon request.


At the end of each lesson students will receive a grade. 
Attendance: 10% 
Performance in lessons: 70% 
Juries: 20%