School of Music
NC Suzuki Institute at ECU

NC Suzuki Institute @ ECU

Registration for 2017 opens in February

For over 30 years The North Carolina Suzuki Institute (NCSI) has provided an opportunity to study the philosophy and teaching of Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. The institute is held on the campus of East Carolina University, utilizing the facilities of the A.J. Fletcher Music Center. The University is located in Greenville, NC and is close to popular family vacation destinations including the Crystal Coast and the Outer Banks.

The North Carolina Suzuki Institute consists of the following components for 2017:

2017 Student Institute

July 8 and 9, 2017 (Pre-Twinkle Day Camp)
July 9 - 14, 2017 (Traditional Student Institute)

2017 Teacher Development Courses

July 7, 2017 (Every Child Can!)
July 8 - 15, 2017 (Violin Unit 1)
Teacher Trainer: JAMES HUTCHINS

The NCSI is approved by the Suzuki Association of the Americas.

North Carolina Suzuki Institute
East Carolina University
A.J. Fletcher Music Center
Greenville, NC 27858-4353
Phone: 252-328-6851

The daily schedule includes private lessons (small master classes) and group repertory classes for all levels from book 1 through advanced, arranged according to level and age. The program is designed with the understanding that parents will be involved, as they are at home, with lessons, practice, and the general supervision of their children.

A typical day at the Suzuki Institute may begin as early as 8:00 a.m. may and include:

  • Master Class (A Class)
  • Technique Class (B Class)
  • Repertory Group (C Class)
  • Orchestra (appropriate levels only)
  • Movement Class
  • Advanced Repertory Class
  • Chamber Music (appropriate levels only)
  • Fiddling
  • Practice
  • Recitals
  • Evening events

Enrollment is open to students studying Suzuki violin, viola, or cello literature with a teacher who has done Suzuki teacher training.

Each student is asked to play a polished piece as a solo at the first meeting of the master class, an opportunity for the teacher and student to get acquainted musically. No matter what the level of current study, the student should select a piece from the repertory that he or she has mastered.

Institute Faculty members may recommend students for participation in the afternoon recital program. These students have the opportunity to rehearse with a professional accompanist before performing on the institute recitals.

Class Descriptions

Master Class (A Class) - This is a group of 3 or 4 students and 1 teacher. The teacher will usually take part of each class to work individually with each student. All students are similar in age and level.

Technique Class (B Class) - This is a group of approximately 16 students and 1 teacher. All of the students are playing repertoire within a few pieces of each other and will cover specific technical issues common to all students at this level.

Repertory Group (C Class) - This is a large group of students and 1 teacher. This is usually all of the students studying in the same Suzuki book.

Orchestra - All students age 7 and older are assigned to an orchestra. Orchestras concentrate on music reading skills and orchestral techniques. The North Carolina Suzuki Institute orchestras are organized primarily by age.

Movement Class - All students age 6 and younger are assigned to a Movement or Dalcroze class. These classes focus on rhythmic movement and general music knowledge.

Special Classes

Advanced Repertory Class - The institute has advanced repertory classes which study specific pieces beyond the Suzuki repertory. The repertory selected for 2017 is:

Violin: Mozart: TBA

Chamber Music - Students who are 13 and older or in Book 6 and above can choose to participate in a string quartet or other chamber music ensemble coached by NCSI faculty. These groups are organized according to age and repertoire level.

Fiddling - This class is geared toward students who want to experience the world of Bluegrass fiddling. Students will learn fiddle tunes, harmonies, improvising tricks, bowings, and learning how to play backup, as well as many other stylistic elements of fiddling. The ability to read music will be helpful in this class but is not required. Learn your instrument in a special, fun exciting way and join us for inspiring sessions to increase the variety of styles in which you play.

Viola for Violinists - A violinist's introduction to playing the viola. Taught by Gail Acosta, this was an exciting new addition for the 2015 institute.

Pre-Twinkle Day Camp (July 8 and 9, 9-12pm)

The Pre-Twinkle Day Camp is designed for four and five year old beginners who may not be ready for the rigors of a full week of the institute. This mini-institute will include group repertoire classes and a movement class.

Fee outline

Registration (one non-refundable fee per student)

  • Late Registration Fee (if received after June 15): $100

Tuition(per student)

  • Student Institute: $450
  • Every Child Can!: $100
  • Violin Unit 1: Teacher Development Course: $600
  • All Other Teacher Development Courses (if offered): $500
  • Pre-Twinkle Day Camp (one day): $50

Enrichment Classes

  • Enrichment Classes: $50 per class
    • Fiddling
    • Chamber Music
    • Advanced Repertoire
    • Viola for Violinists

Dormitory Housing:

  • Violin Unit 1: Teacher Development (Lodging for 8 nights)
    • Double Room: $450/person (includes meal plan)
    • Private Room: $500 (includes meal plan)
    • Student Institute/Other TDC's (Lodging for 6 nights)
      • Double Room: $400/person (includes required meal plan)
      • Private Room: $450 (includes required meal plan)

      Meal Plans:

      • Adult Plan: $175
      • Child Plan: $125 (under age 10)

      Meals are also available "pay as you go"

      Unaccompanied Minors

      • Student participants ages 13-17 may attend without an accompanying adult.
      • Extra fee is $100


      • Parking pass (one per vehicle): $10

      Institute Merchandise

      • Complimentary T-shirt: $10
        1 shirt will be given at no cost for each institute participant
      • Institute Tote Bag: $20

      Lodging and Accommodations

      There are several lodging options for families and individuals attending the institute.

      Option 1: Dormitory housing on the campus of ECU.

      East Carolina offers modern air-conditioned residence halls that are designed for both double and single occupancy. While this option does not offer all of the amenities of a hotel, it does provide linens, Internet access, washers/dryers, vending, and ice machines at a VERY affordable price. The dorms are within easy walking distance to all institute events. A meal plan is required for all persons living on campus and is available for purchase for those not living on campus.

      Option 2: Greenville Hotel/Motel accommodations.

      There are several traditional and extended stay hotels in Greenville. All are within easy driving distance of the ECU campus and the School of Music.

      Click here for a Google Map of Greenville area Hotels

      Travel Information

      Greenville, North Carolina and East Carolina University are easily accessible by automobile or airplane.

      Automobile Travel

      For those traveling by car, Greenville is 40 miles east of I-95 on US 264. Visit the ECU Directions page for maps and full driving directions.

      ECU Directions and Maps page

      Air Travel

      Participants may fly directly into Greenville, North Carolina (airport code PGV) on US Airways Express. Cheaper flights may be available into Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU), Kinston Regional JetPort (ISO), and New Bern/Craven County Regional Airport (EWN).

      Registration Procedures

      Click here to REGISTER.

      Tuition, housing and registration fee must be paid in full by June 15, 2017. Students whose full fees have not been paid by then will be scheduled only if space is available. Space is limited, so please register early.

      If space is available after June 15, late registrations will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. The late registration fee is $100.

      Refund policy: Registration fees are not refundable. All other fees will be refunded in full provided notice of cancellation and a request for refund is received in writing by July 1, 2017. No refund will be made after that date. Refunds are not issued for late arrivals, early departures, or missed meals.


Artistic Director: Joanne Bath
Managing Director: Christopher Ulffers
Assistant Director: Laura Eis

2016 Institute Faculty (partial listing)


Gail Acosta, CA
Joanne Bath, NC
Rocky DiGeorgio, FL
Miranda Fedock, NY 
Nan Freeman, NC
Pattie Hopkins, NC
James Hutchins, VA
Betsy Hughes, NC
Elizabeth Ivy, NC
Pamela Kelly, NC
Rachel Harmatuk Pino, NC
Rachel Talbott, NC


Gail Acosta, CA
Meredith Harrison, TX
Kirsten Swanson, NC


Sylvan Lumsden, WA


Betsy Hughes, NC
Lucas Maia, NY
Greg Hurley, NC (ECU)

Movement Classes:

Leigh Sypawka, NC


Pattie Hopkins, NC

Short-Term Teacher Development Courses:

ECC! and Violin Unit 1: James Hutchins

Every Child Can!

July 8, 2016
James Hutchins

Violin Unit 1

July 8 - 15, 2016
James Hutchins

Short-Term Teacher Workshops

To help train successful Suzuki teachers, the Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA) has set up short term teacher development courses. Teachers interested in studying the Suzuki philosophy, pedagogy and other aspects of the method enroll in courses corresponding to each book.

This teacher development course is approved by and follows the format of the SAA Teacher Development Program. Registration for this Teacher Development Course is in either one of two categories: Participant or Auditor.

The short-term Teacher Training Courses are presented in accordance with SAA guidelines.

Information regarding the Teacher Development Program is available from the SAA.

Pre-Course Preparation for Teachers

It is recommended that in addition to being prepared for the repertoire, the teacher participant should be conversant with the ideas presented in Suzuki's book Nurtured by Love.

All participants will be performing in class. All participants are expected to bring their own instruments. It is also recommended that participants bring a tape recorder and a notebook to all sessions. Attendance is required 100% of class time in order to register a course with the Suzuki Association of the Americas.

Auditors need to register in a timely fashion so a space may be reserved in the class. Auditor status is appropriate when a teacher is unable to meet the course's attendance, observation, or audition requirements. The auditor may play in class only with the permission of the instructor and may not register the course with the Suzuki Association of the Americas. Auditors may observe in a registered teacher training class, as well as student activities, concerts, and performances. The tuition fee is the same for both participants and auditors.

If you have a question, please feel free to ask!

Click here

Topics: Check-in, Housing, Dining, Refunds

Check-in/opening day

2:00pm Check-in on opening day for both the Institute and the Teacher Development Course at the AJ Fletcher Music Center Main Lobby. Click here for a campus map. The music building is #9.

4:00pm All participants meet in AJ Fletcher "Recital Hall"

5:00pm Faculty Meeting

7:00pm Faculty and Student "Play-in"


"I'm staying on campus. What's the dorm situation like?"

Participants staying on campus will be housed in "College Hill Suites." This dormitory was built in 2006 and is the newest facility on campus. Families will find the suite format and the convenience to dinging and the School of Music ideal.


"Anything special we need to bring if we're living in the dorm?"

All linens will be provided (sheets, pillow, blanket, towel). Towels can be exchanged for a $1 fee. Other than that, there are some other items that might be nice:

  • Your own pillow :-)
  • PJ's and a robe (you will be sharing some facilities)
  • Alarm Clock
  • Snacks/Drinks (you will have a fridge)


"Tell me about the Dining Hall..."

Participants staying on campus will be issued a meal card for use in Todd Dining Hall. This dining hall is next door to College Hill Suites. This is NOT your ordinary college cafeteria. More like a food court at your local mall, there are choices for everyone from kids to vegetarians.

"We're not staying in the dorm. Can we take advantage of close convenient meals?"

You don't have to be staying in the dormitory to have a meal plan. Plans can be purchased separately ($150 for adults and children 10 and over. $115 for children 9 and under). Meals in Todd can also be purchased ala carte if you wish to grab a quick bite. The dining hall takes cash, Visa and Mastercard.

"Are there other places to grab lunch quickly?"

There's a local deli (Mike's Deli) within walking distance of the School of Music. Arby's, McDonald's and Subway are just down the street also. They're a little too far to walk though (especially in July!).


It is the policy of the institute not to refund applications fees. All other fees CAN be refunded in full provided notice of cancellation and request for refund is received in writing. Refunds are not issued for late arrivals, early departures, or missed meals. Please contact the Chris Ulffers, managing director.