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The Art of Teaching Orchestra

This informal yet inspirational workshop will tackle many of the challenges that face school orchestra directors on a regular basis. Guest clinicians will address aspects of recruiting and teaching specific instruments (especially string bass and violas), conducting at all levels, the methods of the late Paul Rolland plus opportunities to share teaching practices and favorite orchestra charts.

July 5 – 7
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Noncredit Cost: $250
Credit Cost:Additional $500 for 1 hour of graduate credit (Paid separately to SMU)
Housing: No on-campus housing is available for this workshop. For a listing of local Dallas hotels near the SMU campus and out-of-state discounts, visit here


The Art of Teaching Orchestra Director:

Deborah Perkins, Ph. D. received her BME degree from State University College at Potsdam, NY; MME degree from the University of South Carolina; and a Ph. D. from the University of North Texas.  Also known for building programs, Dr. Perkins built and rebuilt public school orchestra programs in Florida, South Carolina, and Texas. She has served in leadership position in professional organizations of SCMEA, FOA, TexASTA, ASTA and TMEA and has recently completed a two-year term of “Member at Large” on the national ASTA board. Dr. Perkins currently teaches string pedagogy and string techniques. She is the co-founder of the internationally travelling Texas Youth Orchestra & Choir, a group which has travelled to Italy, Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Spain, France and the UK. A hallmark of her teaching is how to make music that expresses and touches the heart of the students and audience alike.  Her dissertation focused on the motivation of students to be enrolled in orchestra, and she is fondly called “the Pied-Piper of Strings” by her friends. Dr. Deb maintains an active schedule as a clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor throughout the US and serves as a performing artist and clinician for Eastman Strings.

Additional Faculty TBA

For further information about SMU Music Educators Workshops, or to register for one of these classes, visit here; or contact Julie Scott or Lisa Beyer at; or call the SMU Music Office at 214-768-1951.

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