Private Lessons
Leanne teaches all levels of classical viola and beginning/intermediate violin, as well as coaching chamber music. Her teaching style brings together traditional classical technique with a focus on body awareness and development of musical creativity. Contact Leanne for more information.

String students experience music beyond the written note with this dynamic workshop. Using a vocal/body warmup and many improvisational games, including musical "telephone" and "Simon sez," Leanne Darling shows how easy it is to start creating your own music. From there she delves directly into ensemble playing, showing how we can use improvisation to listen and share in our own musical expression. Skills covered include cueing and non-verbal communication, use of dynamics, and exploration of different rhythms, textures and timbres. Suitable for all ages and levels, running time 1 to 2 hours. Click here for a handout sample.
Contemporary Bowed Strings
Builds on the StringPlay workshop, with a introduction in creating your own melodies and rhythms through improvisation. Different musical styles — blues, jazz, rock, latin, arabic — are then explored through their basic structures, chords/scales and rhythms. Each style will be introduced step by step, with all participants learning basic rhythmic accompaniments, followed by plenty of opportunities to solo over the group by using their new improv skills to explore the scales and phrases of each style. Suitable for intermediate players, ages 8 and up, running time 1 to 2 hours. Click here for a handout sample.
Introduction to Arabic Music
Bowed strings are an intregal part of Classical Arabic Music, a rich musical tradition based in the Levant region, from Lebanon to northern Egypt. This expressive, lyrical music brings together unique scales, vibrant rhythmic patterns, and colorful ornamentation. This workshop can take two forms:
  1. A lecture demonstration where Leanne Darling guides a string class through the fundamentals of this music: the tonal system, the scales, ornamentation, rhythms and forms. Students will learn scales, improvisation techniques, and some basic repertoire. Suitable for intermediate players, 12 and up, running time 90 minutes to 2 hours.

  2. Leanne and her ensemble will perform various pieces from the classical Arabic repertoire, demonstrate the instruments, talk about the rhythms and the scales, as well as the stories behind the music. The workshop will include audience participation, and musical games. No instruments required, suitable for all ages — running time 30–60 minutes. Designed for school assemblies.

Read Leanne's articles on Arabic String playing from Strings magazine(pdf), The American String Teacher, and The Journal of the American Viola Society.

Contact Leanne for more information on these workshops and to receive a brochure!

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