Martha's teaching journey began in the Philadelphia Public Schools, where she established music programs and taught students from economically challenged areas. She later joined the violin one section in the North Arkansas Symphony and conducted the North Arkansas Symphony Youth Orchestra.
In 1977, she founded the Suzuki Music School of Arkansas and began her lifelong passion of training teachers in the Suzuki method. Martha's passion for music education led her to Bolivia in 1987, where she established the country's first Suzuki Violin Program and facilitated student and teacher exchanges between Fayetteville's University of Arkansas and Santa Cruz, Bolivia.
In 1995, Martha joined the esteemed Levine School of Music in Washington, D.C., and wrote for the American Suzuki Association Journal. She briefly returned to Iowa, where she served as Master Teacher/Coordinator of the Cedar Rapids Symphony School Suzuki Program and Vice-President of the Mt. Vernon Area Arts Council. Settling in Portland, Oregon, she continued her teacher training courses and founded the Portland Suzuki Project, providing valuable violin instruction to young students Title One Schools.
Currently based in Florida, Martha manages the Martha Shackford Violin Studio, specializing in violin and viola, while working on establishing The Suzuki Music and Teacher Training Academy of Tampa Bay.
Apart from music, she enjoys diverse hobbies such as traveling, writing, knitting, swimming, and playing board games. Throughout her career, Martha's dedication to music education has positively influenced numerous students and teachers.
We offer both group and private lessons, separated by skill level, for violin and viola.
We believe that performing is an essential part of learning music. That's why we offer numerous opportunities for our students to showcase their skills, including recitals and concerts.
We also have a student ensemble program, where students can collaborate with their peers and perform in a group setting.
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