top of page

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a Working With Children Check?

   Yes I have a current WWCC. Any child's safety and wellbeing is of the utmost importance.


Is learning violin difficult?

   While it is a very challenging instrument, if done right, can be very rewarding.

What is needed to start?

   Student violins are provided for trial lessons, and can be purchased at the end of the lesson. Violins offered are affordable as possible while maintaining complete functionality.

What age can a child start learning violin?

   Usually a student will start learning when they are at least 5 years old, mostly so they have the developed attention-span, dexterity and patience. If they are very interested in violin, it can be started as early as 3 years old, using a smaller violin. Before this though, it's very beneficial to attend general music classes (not focusing on a particular instrument).

How long does it take to learn violin?

   It does not take long for the average student to become accustomed to playing simple tunes. No violinist is finished learning the instrument though.

Can adults learn the violin?

   Absolutely! Though many people start when they are young, there is no reason not to begin learning later in life. Often the concepts and techniques will be easier understood. There are many exercises to help develop the flexibility required.

Do you do AMEB exams?

   Yes. I’m a registered teacher with AMEB and can provide guidance through all of the exams and repertoire.

What size violin is needed?

   A very rough guide to student sizes would be

Age 3-5: 1/8 size

Age 5-7: 1/4 size

Age 7-9 : 1/2 size

Age 9-11: 3/4 size

   A better approach would be to measure the arm (check out this guide), or ideally test the violin's fit on the student before purchase.


Do I need a shoulder rest?

   The shoulder rest is a common accessory to aid in holding the violin securely.

   I don't recommend one generally, but it is a highly individual choice, and ultimately the student should make the decision. Every body is different, and the shoulder rest may hinder or aid the violin's connection.

   The only situation I particularly recommend them is if the student has quite a long neck, and needs the support to reach the chin to the violin.

How do I set up a violin and bow?

   In everyday use, the violin should be tuned, and the bow tightened before use (and loosened after). Guides can be found here and here.

   The first time though, the violin will need to be setup by someone experienced, and the bow will need lots of rosin applied.


How do I tune a violin?

   Tuning a violin can be done with a free phone app (e.g. GuitarTuna). Look here for an explanation of exactly how to tune a violin.

   Keeping the violin in tune between lessons will be a great help to the student.



What can I learn on guitar, and do I need to read music?

   The guitar is a versatile instrument, with many different styles and techniques, but it comes down to 2 main approaches.


   The classical approach is to learn how to read music, practising simple melodies and strengthening technique in the process.


   The contemporary approach is to use chords and scales to improvise and learn by ear, starting with blues music, and continuing through jazz to modern rock and pop.


   Generally for younger students the classical approach can be a steady introduction while they strengthen their fingers. I like to teach both, so that student can read music, which helps in understanding, and also use scales and chords to improvise freely.

Where can I find a good beginner guitar?

A 3/4 size nylon string acoustic guitar is a good place to start (like this one from artist guitars).

Do I need to use a pick?

This is really a personal choice.


How do I tune the guitar?

The easiest way for a student is to use a guitar tuner app on a phone or tablet.

What age can a child start learning guitar?

A child can start from 5 years old with a nylon string guitar, waiting until 10 years old for bigger chords.

guitar FAQ
bottom of page