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The Mind Over Finger Podcast

Dec 13, 2019

Today, I’m so excited to bring you violinist Elizabeth Faidley!

Elizabeth is a highly sought-after pedagogue, who’s been hailed as an “amazing and inspiring teacher” by the New York Times and is the recipient of a multitude of pedagogy awards.  Get ready for a massive dose of inspiration and great applicable tips!

Elizabeth talks about:

  • How she felt and answered the call to teach
  • How she cares deeply for her students and how that creates a profound studio culture of dedication and support
  • Why she believes that the initial set up is so important
  • Her approach to being a supportive and caring “24/7 teacher”
  • How she listened carefully to the needs of the string community and created the upcoming Violin Pedagogy Symposium to address those needs
  • The topics and guests of the symposium (CHECK OUT THIS AWESOME EVENT HERE!!! I’M GOING FOR SURE!)
  • Why grit is so so so important!
  • The habit that contributed to her success (you’ll see: it’s really inspiring)
  • The awesome concept of “Musical Triage”


More about Elizabeth Faidley and the Violin Pedagogy Symposium below



You can find my favorite websites, cds, as well as the other podcasts I like to listen to and the amazing books recommended by my podcast guests!



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This January we read, study, and apply The Inner Game of Golf by Timothy Gallwey in our practice!


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The Violin Pedagogy Symposium:

Her Instagram account:

Her books on Amazon:

The Strings Virtual Summit:

The Inner Game of Tennis by Tim Gallwey

Mindset by Carol Dweck


A highly sought-after pedagogue, violinist Elizabeth Faidley has been hailed as an “amazing and inspiring teacher” by the New York Times.  She is the recipient of the American String Teachers’ Association 2011 “Studio Teacher of the Year” award for the state of New Jersey. She has also been honored with multiple teaching awards, including ones from the Union City Symphony and the Korean Radio Broadcast Network. In addition to being on the faculty of the Pre-College Division of the Manhattan School of Music, she has a large private studio in the New York City metropolitan area where she teaches violin performance to aspiring players from ages 3 to 23. Her students have won national and international competitions and have performed in such great halls as Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, and the White House. They are routinely accepted, with scholarships, to the world’s premier music conservatories including The Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, the Juilliard School, Peabody Conservatory, Rice University, the Royal College of Music, and The Cleveland Institute.  Her students routinely perform with orchestras around the NYC area.  The NY Times described Ms. Faidley as “…fiercely yet compassionately committed to her students, to her colleagues, and to the art of music.”

Ms. Faidley became adjunct faculty at the Hartt School before the age of 30, reflecting her devotion to the art of violin pedagogy. She has also served on the college conservatory faculties of Montclair State University's Cali School of Music and Hunter College's School of Music.  She holds a Master of Music degree in violin performance and pedagogy from the Peabody Conservatory of Music and was inducted into the professional music fraternity, Pi Kappa Lambda, which honors integrity, superior music performance, and academic success.

Ms. Faidley routinely brings in major concert artists and teachers to give private masterclasses to her studio .  The last four years have included Ray Chen, Stefan Jackiw, Charlie Siem, Dmitri Berlinsky, Ronald Copes, Lisa Batiashvili, Sarah Chang, and Katie Lansdale.

She won the prestigious Melissa Tiller Memorial Prize for graduate performance and while still a student at Peabody, joined the faculty of both the preparatory and conservatory divisions after serving as a teaching assistant to Shirley Givens. Besides Givens, her major pedagogical influences include Ivan Galamian, Joseph Gingold, Paul Rolland, and Shinichi Suzuki, and Rebecca Henry.  She also studied with such masters as Daniel Heifetz, Yuri Masurkevich, Christian Teal, and Qing Li.

Ms. Faidley has served on the faculty of the Summit Music Festival, New York’s premier summer chamber music institute. She has been invited to teach and give master classes in Italy, Germany, Spain, Russia, Norway, and Africa, and has provided private lessons in pedagogy to major violin performers and teachers throughout the United States.  In the summers, Ms. Faidley has specialized camps for her students. Ms. Faidley is a frequent presenter and master class clinician, and she has recently spoken at two national conferences for the American String Teachers’ Association. The first lecture focused on balance in violin technique and pedagogy. The second presented a series of unique technical etudes for every stage of violin playing.  Ms. Faidley has been invited to be the keynote speaker, along with Nobel Laureates at the 2018 World Education Day in Jinan, China.

Ms. Faidley currently employs fourteen violin and musicianship faculty members as part of her school, The Elizabeth Faidley Studio.  All students of any faculty member have access to recitals, masterclasses, private camps, and other performance opportunities.  Ms. Faidley works directly with each teacher in weekly consultations to ensure a balanced musical education for each student.

Ms. Faidley also shares her passion for teaching through her writing. She has completed work on the second edition of a book for children titled “Pre-Twinkling to the Stars: Your Joyful Journey Begins” which focuses on a strong technical foundation for beginning violinists. Her second book, a beginning theory workbook for beginning and intermediate violinists, is also available. She has also published several essays in the American Suzuki Journal and is currently writing a third book on the art of pedagogy entitled, “What Happened to the Nurture?”  The book reflects her teaching philosophy, which seeks to empower the entire, unique person as the foundation of the musician. She generously makes time to mentor her students through auditions, competitions, and performances and stays in touch with them between and beyond studio lessons.

Ms. Faidley’s violin, a generous gift from several patrons, was crafted by Lorenzo Ventapane in 1835 and is pictured in Four Centuries of Violin Making by Cozio Publishing.


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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!