Bethlehem Music Association’s Music Teacher of the Month is Jody Van Voris.
BMA: How long have you been playing a musical instrument?
Jody Van Voris: I started playing the piano at age 4. My mother was my piano teacher from age 4 through my junior year of high school. My father (a retired music teacher and bass player), started teaching me the violin at about age 8. I studied both piano and violin through high school and chose to concentrate on violin in college at the Crane School of Music.
BMA: Music teachers in Bethlehem have a busy schedule. Tell us what classes or events you’re looking forward to this year and next.
Jody Van Voris: I'm hoping to have my BC string students perform this year, either via video or livestream. The middle school orchestras are able to meet in-person this year so they will be itching to perform again! I will be performing on viola with the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra this season. We have five in-person concerts this year and I'm looking forward to performing for a LIVE audience at Proctor’s Theater.
BMA: Who are your favorite string players? Can you recommend an album or concert video we should listen to?
Jody Van Voris: So many! Here are some of my favorite string players:
Violin: Mark O'Connor, Itzhak Perlman, Hilary Hahn, Gil Shaham, Chloe Chua, Stephane Grappelli, Charles Yang.
Viola: Richard O'Neill, Pinchas Zuckerman.
Cello: Yo-Yo Ma, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, Jacqueline DuPre.
Bass: Edgar Meyer, Esperanza Spalding.
Here's one of my favorite videos by teenage violinist Chloe Chua. She's amazing!