“Ellery is an amazing fiddle instructor. My son began taking lessons from her 4 years ago and during this time I have seen big improvements with his ability to play. She’s great at understanding the individual needs of her students and coming up with a tailored learning approach that enables her students to feel comfortable and grow their skills.”
– Jeana, mom of Alexander
Most people start with the question: “What’s the difference between a fiddle and a violin, anyway?” Ellery says, “It’s the attitude!”
Ellery aims to teach “to the individual” – finding what works, what motivates, and what brings joy to each person in her studio. There is no doubt that the violin can be a challenging instrument to learn. Ellery encourages technical excellence while also teaching perseverance and confidence. Knowing kids today face pressure and anxiety, Ellery makes sure her students build the ability to feel ok with mistakes, laugh, and be compassionate towards oneself. Her goal is to enable holistic musicians that are able to listen, learn, create and collaborate with others for a future lifetime of music- whether in community, or professionally.
Most of Ellery’s students begin with the online, interactive curriculum Fiddlequest, and continue on with a mix of fiddle tunes played in Boston’s various fiddle music communities, and tunes selected to offer greater technical challenges. Ellery makes sure her students are equally able to read music and learn by ear, and loves to work with students also interested in exploring classical repertoire.
Ellery also runs monthly group workshops where her students explore improvisation and work collaboratively through the Kanack Creative Ability Development method, and then play their tunes in a “parents are welcome!” group jam session. Ellery has been at Powers since 2013 and is the director of Powers’ summer fiddle day program. She has taught workshops and lessons in the US, Ireland, Bermuda and Japan; at Boston’s Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann music school, and the annual Fiddle Hell gathering in Westford. She also maintains a violin and fiddle studio in Medford and is a visiting music specialist for two preschools in the greater Boston area. More information about Ellery and her teaching can be found at www.elleryklein.net.
Ellery graduated with a major in instrumental music from Cincinnati’s famed School for Creative and Performing Arts in 1992. She received an MA in Irish Traditional Music Performance from the University of Limerick in 2001. She is trained in Alice Kanack’s Creative Ability Development method, Mark O’Connor Method Books I & II, and Music Together. She toured nationally with the Irish supergroup Gaelic Storm from 2003-2007. In 2015, she performed the Celtic solo for Nickitas Demos’ “Long Journey Home, Double Concerto for Celtic Fiddler and Bluegrass Fiddler” with the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra. Currently she performs across New England with the fiddle, flute and guitar trio Fódhla. (www.fodhlamusic.com)Ellery also is a parent who, when not teaching, shuttles her own two budding musicians to their violin, clarinet and piano lessons.