Young Artists Program
Amy Sue Barston, Cello (Swarthmore, PA)
Praised as “passionate and elegant” by The New York Times, cellist Amy Sue Barston has performed as a soloist and chamber musician on stages all over the world, including Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Ravinia, Bargemusic, Caramoor, Haan Hall (Jerusalem), The Banff Centre (Canada), The International Musicians Seminar (England), The Power House (Australia), and Chicago’s Symphony Center. Amy is also a devoted teacher: in her home, at the New York School for Strings, as a guest teacher at Juilliard, and at numerous summer music festivals. Several of her students commute for lessons from hundreds of miles away, some from as far away as Alaska and Japan. Amy’s upcoming schedule includes solo and chamber music performances in England, Sydney, New Zealand, Tokyo, New York, Los Angeles, Salt Lake, Wisconsin, Rochester, Denver, Chicago, and Germany. Amy also has a brand new CD out and available, which she had the honor to record with Grammy Award-winning contemporary classical music producer, Judith Sherman.
Elisa Barston, Violin & Viola (Seattle, WA)
Praised for her “glowing sound” and “technical aplomb” (The Strad), violinist Elisa Barston is the Seattle Symphony’s Principal Second Violin. Prior to the appointment, she served as the Associate Concertmaster of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra for eight seasons and was a first violin section member of The Cleveland Orchestra. As a soloist and chamber musician, Barston has performed extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, appearing with the Chicago Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the St. Louis and Taipei symphony orchestras, among many others. In 1986, she made her European debut with the English Chamber Orchestra at the request of Sir Yehudi Menuhin. Barston studied at the University of Southern California and Indiana University. photo © Larey McDaniel
Dr. Quinton Morris, Chamber Music (Renton, WA)
Dr. Quinton Morris enjoys a multifaceted career as a concert violinist, educator, entrepreneur, radio host, and filmmaker. He has performed solo concertos, recitals and presented masterclasses and lectures at some of the world’s most respected venues, including the Seattle Symphony, Carnegie Hall (New York), TEDxSeattle, Seattle Art Museum, Roberts Project Art Museum (Los Angeles), the Sydney Opera House (Australia), the Louvre Museum (Paris), National Normal Taiwan University (Taiwan), Dong-eui University (Korea), the American String Teachers Association National Conference, the University of Paris, Monash University (Australia) and Tumaini University (Tanzania), among many others.
He has received numerous awards for his artistic and community service including the Distinguished and Audience Favorite Awards at the Ibla International Competition, the Washington State Governor’s Arts Award, the Seattle Mayor’s Arts Award, Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Award and Hall of Fame Alumni Award from Renton High School. As a filmmaker, he has received the top prize at the European Independent Film Awards (Paris), the Bronze Award at the Global Music Awards in Los Angeles and high honors at the New York Film Awards.
Dr. Morris founded Key to Change in 2017 with the goal of providing underserved youth and students of color living in South King County with opportunities to take violin and viola lessons. Since the inception of Key to Change, hundreds of students have had an opportunity to take music lessons, participate in numerous musical outreach activities and learn in a diverse and inclusive environment. At the beginning of the global pandemic, Dr. Morris led a successful pivot from in-person to online lessons resulting in the string studio’s student enrollment quadrupling and retaining over 90% of students who enrolled in the program.
Dr. Morris is an Associate Professor of Violin at Seattle University, where he is the first tenured music professor in over 40 years. He is the second living Black violinist in United States history to receive tenure and promotion at the university level. He is also the Artist-Scholar in Residence at Classical King FM 98.1, where he hosts the radio and video show Unmute The Voices. He is also the former co-chair of the Seattle Arts Commission.
A native of Renton, Washington, Dr. Morris holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts; a Master of Music degree from the Boston Conservatory; and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He is currently finishing a graduate diploma in business at the Harvard Extension School. In his spare time, he enjoys watching football, spending time with his family, traveling, wine tasting and collecting toy red cars.
Violin and Viola
Ruth Marie Ballance (Renton, WA)
Ruth Marie Ballance is a violinist, teacher, and a resident of the Seattle area. She has previously been on faculty at Samford University, where she was a member of the Samford University Quartet; University of Alabama—Birmingham; STEP Birmingham; Hochstein School of Music and Dance in Rochester, NY; Cleveland Institute of Music and Broadway School of Music and the Arts in Ohio; Credo Chamber Music at Oberlin College; and Austin Chamber Music Center Summer Workshop. Ruth Marie studied violin with Leonard Posner, Linda Cerone, David Russell, and Paul Kantor among others, and received the Cleveland Institute of Music Jerome Gross Prize in Violin in 2001. A 2011 recipient of the Suzuki Association of the Americas Certificate of Achievement, she has taken Suzuki teacher training with Ronda Cole, Edmund Sprunger, Alice Joy Lewis, Patricia D’Ercole, Carol Dallinger, Nancy Jackson, Cathryn Lee, and Christie Felsing. Ms. Ballance has been published several times in the American Suzuki Journal and has presented at both the SAA Conference and the ASTA Conference. She has performed as a concerto soloist with the Austin Symphony, the Austin Civic Orchestra, the Cleveland Institute of Music Orchestra, and the Huntsville Youth Orchestra among others, as well as performing as a member of the Alaska Quartet in several states.
Reagan Brasch grew up in the Suzuki method studying with Paula Woyton in Texas. She graduated with a bachelors of music in violin performance and received her masters in music with an emphasis in Suzuki Pedagogy from the University of Denver. After teaching with Denver Talent Education for five years with James Maurer, she moved to Chicago to teach at the Music Institute of Chicago (MIC) under the direction of Gilda Barston. She has had additional Suzuki training from Linda Fiore, Joanne Bath, Ann Smelser, Michele George, Doris Preucil, and Pat D’Ercole. Mrs. Brasch gives both private and group instruction in Suzuki. She also is the program director of the early childhood Musikgarten classes to toddlers and preschoolers, as well as Events Coordinator for MIC’s Suzuki Program. She was awarded Outstanding Teacher by the Alliance for Early Childhood and the Certificate of Achievement Award from the SAA. Mrs. Brasch has taught extensively at Suzuki institutes and workshops around the country.
Gaye Detzer (Vashon, WA)
Gaye Detzer has been a Suzuki teacher for more than 30 years and currently maintains a private studio. She has taught violin classes and chamber music at Suzuki institutes in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska, as well as at Vivace! Chamber Players. Gaye plays violin and viola with the Arioso Ensemble and the Vashon-Maury Chamber Orchestra and is also the music director of the Vashon Youth String Orchestra and the Teen String Ensemble. Her family has four Suzuki children, one of whom graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Music and is now making a career as a cellist. Another is part of a rock band that has toured the United States and Europe.
Yasuko Eastman (Victoria, B.C.)
Yasuko Eastman began teaching the Suzuki Method in 1963 in Japan. In 1966, she arrived in Edmonton, Canada, to help establish the Suzuki program there at the recommendation of Dr. Suzuki. Yasuko moved to Victoria with her family in 1985, where she continues to enjoy teaching at home. Yasuko’s former students are active as professional and amateur musicians and are contributing to the world in diverse ways. She has served as concertmaster of the Victoria Chamber Orchestra since 1996, and is also a founding member of the Galiano Ensemble of Victoria and first violinist of the Heron Quartet. Yasuko’s teachers include Koichi Hasegawa, Shinichi Suzuki, Thomas Rolston, and members of the Hungarian String Quartet. She holds a Bachelor of Music and a Bachelor of Education from the Osaka College of Music, and a Master of Music from the University of Alberta. Yasuko enjoys traveling, hiking, gardening, designing, and drawing.
Daniel Gee Cordova (Austin, TX)
Daniel Gee Cordova is founder and director of the Austin Suzuki Music School. He has extensively studied the Suzuki Method in Violin, Viola and Suzuki Early Childhood Education with a broad scope of teachers. He holds degrees from the Crane School of Music – SUNY Potsdam and the University of Texas at Austin. In May 2012, Daniel was awarded the Suzuki Association of the America’s Certificate of Achievement, a recognition given to teachers that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to excellence in their teaching.
Daniel is an active clinician giving presentations at National Conferences as well as guest teacher at workshops around the country. He has presented at many conferences including the SAA, ASTA, Texas Music Educator’s Conference, and Texas Orchestra Director’s Association Conference, as well as for the SAA Parents As Partners Online. Daniel has been invited to guest conduct the Texas Region Middle School String Orchestras for Region 11 in San Antonio and Region 18 in Austin.
In the summers, Daniel serves a Director for the Greater Austin Suzuki Institute and has been on faculty for different Suzuki Institutes around the country including the Intermountain Suzuki String Institute, the Japan-Seattle Suzuki Institute, the Ozark Suzuki Institute, Acadiana Suzuki Institute, Ithaca Suzuki Institute, Northern California Suzuki Institute, and the Chicago Suzuki Institute.
Daniel performs regularly serving as Assistant Principal Viola with the Austin Opera. Mr. Gee Cordova previously served as Orchestra Director at Chisholm Trail Middle School in Round Rock ISD from 2009-2019 infusing the Suzuki approach to students within the public school system. Daniel enjoys spending time with his husband Jerry and their terriers Bamboo and Tristan, and finding the best tacos in Austin.
Tracy Helming Wiggin (Seattle, WA)
Tracy Helming Wiggin is a registered SAA Suzuki Teacher Trainer. She received a Master’s Degree in music performance from Yale University, and completed registered Suzuki training in all 10 of the violin books, including long term training with Teri Einfeldt at the Hartt School of Music. She has been teaching violin and chamber music since 1990, both in her studio, Momentum Music School, as well as at institutes and workshops around the Northwest and Alaska. She also teaches Suzuki Early Childhood Education classes. Tracy got to experience the Suzuki journey as a parent with her two children.
Lisa Humphrey (Bellingham, WA)
Lisa Humphrey has taught Suzuki violin and viola for over 15 years. She received her Suzuki violin training from Teri Einfeldt and Linda Fiore and her Suzuki viola training from Betsy Stuen-Walker. Formerly on the faculty of the Hartt School of Music, she currently runs the Humphrey Music School in Bellingham, Washington, where she maintains a studio of 50+ students. Lisa’s students have performed with the National Youth Symphony USA, at Carnegie Hall, and at the Sydney Opera House. Lisa has a masters degree in viola performance from Indiana University, where she completed additional teacher training with Mimi Zweig, and a Bachelors degree in viola performance from the Hartt School of Music. Also an avid performer, she has performed solo, chamber, and orchestral music around the country and throughout Russia and Armenia. She has performed as guest artist with both the Emerson String Quartet and the Leontovich String Quartet (NYC). Lisa has recently recorded and released a series of viola sonatas, along with pianist Adam Whiting, available through Google Play. In her free time, she practices with her 9 year old (viola and piano) and 6 year old (cello and piano). She is a yoga enthusiast and incorporates whole body balance and awareness into her lessons.
Chloe Ross-Massey, Assistant Director (Concord, CA)
Chloe Ross-Massey is the founder and director of The Studio Violin, a Suzuki violin school located in the East Bay of the SF Bay area. Chloe grew up in Seattle and attended Japan-Seattle Suzuki Institute as a child, along with playing in the Seattle Youth Symphonies for many years. She attended The Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA under the tutelage of the late Janet Packer, and earned her Certificate of Violin Performance. Upon moving back to Seattle, Chloe became a section violinist with the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra for two seasons before moving to California.
Chloe believes wholeheartedly in the magic of the Suzuki Method. She studies Suzuki violin pedagogy with Charles Krigbaum and has taken extensive training with Diana Volodka Staggs, Edward Kreitman, Ann Montzka Smelser, Teri Eindfeld, and Kathleen Spring. She is a registered Suzuki teacher and an active member of her local SAA chapter, The Suzuki Association of Northern California.
When not teaching, Chloe enjoys spending time with her two dogs and mountain biking with her husband.
What keeps us coming back is the quality of teachers.
JSSI is always well-run, we feel very well supported, and we will definitely attend again, whether in person/virtual.
Seize the opportunity to study with our world-class faculty at JSSI 2022!