Getting Started

msgh-summer-concert-showing-violins2Now enrolling new violin and viola, traditional and Suzuki Method students (ages 3+). Here’s how to get started…

On Your Marks: Learn

  1. Select a lesson location, whether at Emily’s private studio (Roslindale, MA) the  All Newton Music School (West Newton, MA) or South Shore Conservatory (Hingham, MA), and learn about their individual policies and tuition rates.
  2. Contact the selected school to schedule an initial observation/sample lesson.
  3. In preparation for Suzuki Method lessons, the assisting parent/guardian is required to read Nurtured by Love by Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. This short book provides important insight into the Suzuki educational philosophy and how the method works. 

Get Set: Prepare

  1. After your observation lesson, complete the registration process for your chosen studio location.
  2. Obtain a properly sized instrument, shoulder rest, notebook and music books, as indicated by your teacher. The youngest Suzuki beginners skip this step at first, and will receive a Suzuki Twinkler Starter Kit at their first lesson containing all necessary supplies, including “box violin”. The parent/guardian may rent a full size violin and learn alongside their child in lessons. After the child learns respect for the instrument and many skills using the box violin, they “graduate” to using their very own “real violin”. The parent may trade in their full-size rental for the child’s size, or obtain their own instrument to continue.  


    A “box violin” for the youngest Suzuki beginners. Upon graduating to their first real instrument, the student gets to unwrap the box violin and discover a present inside!

  • Instruments: Children outgrow both shoes and violins quickly! Learn how to find the correct size here. In most cases it is best to rent an instrument which can be traded in for the next largest size as your child grows. If there are multiple children in your family who will play violin, it may be more economical to buy outright. Quality instruments can be obtained easily through Shar Music and Johnson String InstrumentPLEASE AVOID PURCHASING INSTRUMENTS ON EBAY. They are often very poor quality and can make the learning process frustrating and unsatisfying!
  • Shoulder Rests range in price from approximately $3.50 – $25.00. A simple piece of foam of the right height and density works fabulously for beginners, and can be purchased at the same location as your instrument. Make sure whichever shoulder rest you obtain is the correct size for your child’s instrument. Some are adjustable and can even “grow” with your child as they move through instrument sizes.

3. Check with the administration at your lesson location to find out when your first tuition payment and fees are due. Information on Roslindale private studio fees is available here.


In order to get a return on your musical investment, now it’s time to begin building the following habits…

  1. Weekly lesson attendance
  2. Daily home practice (and daily listening for Suzuki students)
  3. Attending Suzuki group class
  4. Sharing your music with others in studio recitals and other informal performance opportunities!