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The Mind Over Finger Podcast

Apr 5, 2019

In this week’s episode, I wrap up this series on the main teachers in my journey as a violinist with an interview with Northwestern University professor Gerardo Ribeiro, with whom I studied during my doctoral years.

Professor Ribeiro talks to us about his experience studying with Ivan Galamian and Felix Galamir, how he uses mental practice, why we must develop the awareness to truly hear our own playing and assess critically what we are doing, and about the importance of taking ownership of our learning experience!

I learned so much with Professor Ribeiro and I’m so happy to have him on the show!  He is full of insight and useful tips, and also has great anecdotes for us!  I hope you enjoy our discussion!


In this episode, Professor Ribeiro elaborates on:

  • His experience studying with Ivan Galamian
  • The importance of listening to ourselves
  • Why moving can be detrimental to our playing
  • Mental practice
  • Why we must develop the awareness to truly hear our own playing and assess critically what we are doing
  • The importance of aural skills


Gerardo Ribeiro

Gerardo Ribeiro, Portugal's premier violinist, is recognized on four continents as one of the truly important violinists of his generation. With acclaimed recitals at New York City's most prestigious concert venues - Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall and the Metropolitan Museum - Mr. Ribeiro has also appeared at Washington, D.C.'s Kennedy Center, and is well known in major European, South American and Far Eastern concert halls.

As a concerto soloist, Mr. Ribeiro has appeared with the Philadelphia and Gulbenkian Orchestras, the Montreal, Dallas, Lucerne, Lisbon, Porto, Barcelona and Cali Symphony Orchestras, the Zagreb, Antwerp and Lisbon Philharmonics, the Taiwan, Beijing, Belgian and Portuguese National Orchestras, the Radio Orchestras of Paris (O.R.T.F.), Lisbon, Berlin, Hilversum (Holland) and North Germany (Hannover) and other leading ensembles.

Beginning violin studies at an early age, Ribeiro went on to earn Soloist Diplomas, with honors, at both the Porto and Lucerne Conservatories, later attending the Juilliard School, where he studied with Ivan Galamian, Paul Makanowitzky and Felix Galimir. Numerous awards in distinguished international competitions such as the Montreal and Paganini followed. First Prizes were received at the Vianna de Motta contest in Lisbon and the Maria Canals competition in Barcelona.

After serving on the violin faculty of the Eastman School of Music, Mr. Ribeiro joined Northwestern University as professor of violin. He is a member of the Meadowmount Trio, ensemble-in-residence at the Meadowmount School of Music. Ribeiro has been awarded the Presidential Scholars Teacher Recognition Award from the White House's Commission on Presidential Scholars. Mr. Ribeiro is also on the string faculty at the Music Institute of Chicago where he teaches and coaches advanced students and chamber groups in the Academy program.


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Most sincere thank you to composer Jim Stephenson who graciously provided the show’s musical theme!  Concerto #1 for Trumpet and Chamber Orchestra – Movement 2: Allegro con Brio, performed by Jeffrey Work, trumpet, and the Lake Forest Symphony, conducted by Jim Stephenson.

Also a HUGE thank you to my fantastic producer, Bella Kelly!