Studio Policy

Required materials to bring to each lesson

Appropriately sized cello and bow, cello chair (if at all possible; for younger students), rosin, cleaning cloth (old tshirt or microfiber towel), pencil, blank notebook for assignments, music book

Required materials for home use

All of the above plus music stand, metronome, digital tuner (also available as apps on smartphones), listening CD, chair which allows the student’s thighs to be parallel to the floor (this is important for the ability to hold the cello properly).

Parental involvement

Parents are highly encouraged to attend and take notes at every lesson (including group classes) especially for young and beginning students. Parents are required to attend all lessons for children ages 7 and under. For more information on parental involvement see the FAQs.


Individual practice time outside of the lesson is essential to the musical development and confidence of the student. Practice at home is essential for learning to play any instrument. Expectations and detailed recommendations of what to practice will be made clear during each lesson. Regular and consistent practice is required for regular and consistent progress. Parents who attend the lesson are asked to help their child practice at home.


Listening to the CD is part of regular practice, details will also be outlined each week during the lesson.


Payment is due on a monthly basis. Exact process is dependent upon on your lesson location. Please contact for current rates. It is rare, but tuition is subject to change. This will never happen more than once a year and you will be given advance notice.


Attendance at every lesson is essential. As a courtesy please contact me to let me know that you will not be attending your lesson 24 hours in advance. If the student is ill, do not come to the lesson. If a child is too ill for school then they are too sick to come to their lesson. Make-up lessons are not offered. Why do I have a no make-up policy? Please read the following article, “Make-Up Lessons From An Economist’s Point of View”

If I miss a lesson due to illness or other conflict a make-up lesson will always be scheduled. If a time cannot be agreed upon for a make-up lesson the lesson fee will be credited toward the following month. If lessons fall during a major holiday this will be reflected in the monthly tuition.


If you must cancel lessons permanently, notice should be given 2 weeks in advance. If your take lessons at Music and Arts this is a policy they have as well.


Siblings are welcome if they can entertain themselves quietly. Noisy infants and children distract the parent, student, and teacher.

Group Classes

Group classes are available for adult students at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton. There is a class for students currently enrolled in lessons as well as a True Beginner class for adults testing the waters. At the Mason Community Arts Academy in Fairfax, I offer a Cello Beginnings class for students ages 4-7, private lessons not required.


Recitals take place in October and April each year. Informal in-lesson recitals will be performed for parents at the completion of every book.

Musical Environment

In addition to daily listening a good musical environment is the best help for any student. Try to attend as many concerts as possible and listen to as many recordings as you can.


Difficulties and problems occur in the lives of any student. Some of them I am aware of and some I am not. Please keep me informed. This can make the difference between a happy lesson and a frustrating one. Your cooperation is much appreciated.