I believe that educating a student in music is not just about learning an instrument but that it creates a space for students to more deeply access their own creativity and creative problem solving skills. I strive to tailor my lessons to the individual needs of my students (whether they are young or young at heart, beginning or quite experienced) while helping them develop confidence in their strengths and a fearless perspective on their weaknesses. I enjoy taking a broad musical approach to the cello and my students, that is grounded in a foundation of classical music and enhanced by my performance experience in folk, jazz, rock & world music.
Valerie began teaching private and small group cello lessons in the greater Boston area in 2002. She has been on faculty at the Illinois Wesleyan Cello Camp (Bloomington, IL); Miles of Music Camp (Lake Winnipesaukee, NH); CCE Music and Dance Week (Bethesda, MD); CelloChan Woods (Ann Arbor, MI.) In addition to teaching in the “Meet the Instruments” summer program and private lessons at Brookline Music School, Valerie teaches Songwriting in the Preparatory Department at New England Conservatory. Valerie has supplemented her teaching experience with studies in string pedagogy with Magdalena Richter and Music-in-Education at the New England Conservatory and teaching artist inclusion workshops through the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshir
Valerie has enjoyed an active freelance career in the Boston area with chamber performances, recording session work, and sharing the stage with such notable artists as jazz pianist, Fred Hirsch; rock-icon, Amanda Palmer; multi- media artist, Christopher Janney; and with pop-chamber ensemble, Vitamin String Quartet (including a television appearance on Warner Brothers’ Gossip Girl.) She has toured nationally and internationally with ensembles that range from art-rock to chamber folk such as Laura Cortese & the Dance Cards, Long Time Courting, Fluttr Effect, and Goli. In the winter of 2014, Valerie performed and taught on a cultural diplomacy tour of India, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Bangladesh sponsored in part by the U.S. State Department and American Music Abroad.
B.M., Performance, Summa Cum Laude, Berklee College of Music; M.M., Contemporary Improvisation, with Academic Honors, New England Conservatory of Music