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Karen Tuttle Viola Workshop                UD Music Logo.jpg
January 12 - January 14, 2018
Newark, Delaware

An intense three-day workshop taught by several generations of former Tuttle students for advanced high school and college students, professionals, and teachers interested in learning more about Karen Tuttle's (1920-2010) Coordination system.

This healthy approach to playing includes balancing the instrument, stance, and body awareness, leading to ease and comfort, resulting in a beautiful, resonant sound, more facile technique, expressive playing, and reduced stage fright.  Left and right hand technique, phrasing, pacing, character and musical expression, among other things, are also addressed in Coordination.

These concepts will be introduced to all of the participants, and the teachers will work with them in small group masterclasses. This is geared to the viola, but other musicians can benefit from the methods.

Enrollment is limited to 45 Full Participant registrations so that everyone will be able to play several times in the classes for different teachers. There is no limit on how many auditors may attend.  No audition material is required.  Admission will be on a first come, first served basis.  If you would like to perform in the Sunday morning final masterclass please contact Sheila Browne, Workshop Director (


Program: January 12 - January 14, 2018


Full Participation Registration before December 1, 2017: $345

  • After December 1, 2017 Full Participant Registration: $375

Advance Auditor Registration: $150

  • At-the-Door Auditor Registration: $200



Sheila Browne.jpg
Sheila Browne,
Susan Dubois.jpg
Dr. Susan
Karen Ritscher.jpg
Karen Ritscher
Michelle LaCourse.jpg
Jeffrey Irvine.jpg
Jeffrey Irvine


Workshop will take place in the Amy E. du Pont Music Building and the Roselle Center of the Arts on the University of Delaware campus in Newark, DE.  Check-in information, complete schedule, maps and directions will be sent via email in early January.

1:30pm - 2:15pm
2:15pm - 2:45pm
2:45pm - 4pm
4:30pm - 6:30pm
6:30pm - 8:30pm

Conference Check-In
Presentation by Claire Stefani, custom chinrest fittings (Volute Services)
Introduction Session
Session #1
Dinner on your own
There are several options within walking distance
Faculty Recital
10am - 12pm
12pm - 1:30pm

1:30pm - 3:30pm
3:30pm - 4pm
4pm - 6pm
6pm - 7:30pm
7:30pm - 9pm
Session #2
Lunch on your own
Pre-ordered box lunch is available for $10
Session #3
Session #4
Banquet Dinner (included for Full Participants, $30 for auditors and guests)
5 RhythmsTM with Karen Ritscher
9am - 10am
10am - 12pm

12pm - 12:30pm
Piano Rehearsals
Final Masterclass
Participants will receive feedback from all faculty
Q&A session with faculty


By car, Newark, Delaware, is located approximately 1 hour from Philadelphia, 1 hour from Baltimore, 2 hours from Washington, DC, and 2.5 hours from Manhattan.  If you travel by personal vehicle, parking at the hotel will be free and on campus it will be $5.00 per day (no in and out privileges) in the parking garage adjacent to the Roselle Center for the Arts.

Wilmington, Delaware, is serviced by Amtrak, Megabus, and Greyhound.  There is not really an easy way to travel from Wilmington to Newark via public transportation (especially on weekends).  However, there is limited Uber available in the area.

Philadelphia Airport (PHL) is located approximately 45 minutes from Newark, and from Baltimore-Washington Airport (BWI) the trip is approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.   Delaware Express (an airport shuttle) is the only vendor to service Newark, DE.  A trip to PHL will run approximately $54 per person each way, and a trip to BWI will run approximately $150 per person each way.


Our Priority Hotel is the Embassy Suites (654 S College Avenue, Newark).  The workshop rate is $105.00 per night at Embassy Suites and includes a hot breakfast.  Free parking is available.  We will provide a van shuttle from the front entrance of Embassy Suites (Homewood & Baymont within walking distance) to workshop.

Local lodging options include:

​Hotel Name
​Rate ​Contact Information ​Comment Distance
from Conf.
from Main
​Embassy Suites
by Hilton
3 stars
plus tax

654 S. College Ave. Newark


Primary Hotel
includes Hot Buffet Breakfast

2.5 miles

3 miles​
​Homewood Suites
by Hilton
3 stars
plus tax
640 S. College Ave. Newark

includes Hot Buffet Breakfast

2.5 miles

3 miles
​Baymont Inn
2 Stars
plus tax

630 S. College Ave. Newark


2.5 miles

3 miles​
Super 8
1 Star​
plus tax

268 E. Main St. Newark

Right on Main Street in
the Heart of downtown
Can walk to workshop

About a mile​

Less than
1 block​
The UD Community Music School is offering two 90% scholarships to local High School students interested in participating. To apply please send email to, with Karen Tuttle Scholarship Application in the subject line and include:
  1. Your Name
  2. Your school, grade, and age
  3. How long you have been playing
  4. What you like best about playing the viola
  5. What you hope to gain by attending the workshop

In addition, please have your current strings teacher at school or your private teacher send us an email directly recommending you for the program. Email from your teacher should have “Karen Tuttle Scholarship + [your name] in the subject line.

Winners will be announced on December 1, 2016. 


Sheila Browne, an American with Irish citizenship, was recently described by The New York Times as “stylish” for her concerto playing at Carnegie-Stern Hall, and Robert Mann, founding member of the Juilliard Quartet, has said that she “is one of America’s finest violists.” Named the William Primrose Memorial Recitalist of 2016, she is the first viola professor ever to teach in Iraqi Kurdistan, and has played all over the world in many of the major concert halls to critical acclaim. An avid solo and chamber musician, she has performed and / or recorded with Natalie Cole, Audra MacDonald, Paul Katz, Anton Kuerti, Ruth Laredo, Richard Stolzman, Carol Wincenc, and members of the esteemed Brentano, Cleveland, Guarneri, and Vermeer quartets, and was featured in Michael Tilson Thomas’ PBS documentary Beethoven Alive! Sheila can be heard regularly on public radio stations around the country, live and on CD. Her recently released CD of flute quintets with Carol Wincenc on the Bridge label was named CD of the month by Minnesota Public Radio, and her latest CD, Poetry in Motion, has received favorable reviews with the Fire Pink Trio. A passionate proponent of new music, she has premiered important new works, and she has worked with composers such as  Krystof Penderecki, Joan Tower, William Bolcom,  Judith Shatin, and Kenneth Jacobs. Sheila has also expanded the viola repertoire by transcribing works herself.

A passionate teacher of viola and chamber music, Sheila’s students continue at major conservatories and are active as performers and administrators in the music world. Sheila was Karen Tuttle’s teaching assistant for four years and Naumburg scholarship student at the Juilliard School as an undergraduate, as well as a graduate student of Kim Kashkashian in Germany, after being awarded a German Academic Exchange Grant (DAAD). She was Karen Ritscher's teaching assistant while attending Rice University in Paul Katz's Quartet program, and has been in the Arianna, Gotham and Pellegrini String quartets. She was Associate Viola Professor at UNC- School of the Arts, and she has performed / taught at many festivals including Banff, Donaueschingen, Evian, Great Lakes, California Summer Music, Jeunesses Musicales, Kneisel Hall, Music Academy of the West, Tanglewood, and the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq.

She is the professor of viola at University of Delaware, and the violist of the Serafin String Quartet and Fire Pink Trio, and has directed Karen Tuttle Viola workshops both at UNCSA and at UD. She teaches in the summer at the NYU Karen Tuttle Workshops in New York and in Prague, Master Players Concert Festival & School, Techne and the Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival. Videos, sound clips and more information can be found at, and, and on YouTube.

Susan Dubois is Professor of Viola at the University of North Texas. She was the only viola winner of the Artists International 23rd Annual Auditions, and she was a prizewinner in the Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition. She was formerly with the Rackham Quartet, and has participated in the Marlboro Music Festival and the La Jolla Chamber Music Festival. During the summers, Dubois is on the faculty of Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival, Round Top International Music Festival, and Texas Music Festival. Her teachers have included Karen Tuttle and Donald McInnes.

Jeffrey Irvine joined the faculty of the Cleveland Institute of Music as the Fynette H. Kulas Professor of Viola in September of 1999. He was professor of viola at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music from 1983 to 1999 and was also chair of the string division there from 1992 to 1999. His students have gone on to major orchestral, teaching and chamber music posts across the country and around the world. His students have often been first prize winners in major viola competitions, including the Primrose Competition, the ASTA National Solo Competition, and the Washington International Competition. Irvine has given master classes at major music schools in the United States and in 1985 gave master classes in Beijing and Shanghai. He will join the faculty of the Perlman Music Program in the summer of 2012. He was previously on the faculty of the Heifetz International Music Festival and the Aspen Music Festival. He was formerly a member of the New World String Quartet. His teachers have included Heidi Castleman, Martha Katz, William Primrose, and Karen Tuttle. He is married to violist Lynne Ramsey with whom he has two children, Hannah and Christopher. He plays a viola by Hiroshi Iizuka, made in 1993.

Michelle LaCourse has appeared as soloist and chamber musician on four continents, including recent performances in Italy, Spain, Brazil, and South Korea. She has performed at numerous festivals such as Aspen, Eastern, Interlochen, Skaneateles, Musicorda, the Heifetz Institute, and the International Festivals of Campos do Jordão, Brazil, of Positano, Italy, and of Vianden, Luxembourg. She was violist of the Lehigh Quartet, the Delphic String Trio and the Aeolian Trio, and was formerly principal violist of the Chamber Orchestra of Grenoble, France, and of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia. An enthusiastic advocate for new viola repertoire, she has also commissioned and premiered several new pieces for the instrument. Her recent recording, “Chocolates: Music for Viola and Piano by James Grant” was released by MSR Classics in spring of 2009 to enthusiastic reviews. She is professor of viola and chair of the String Department at Boston University’s School of Music, and was recently awarded BU’s Metcalf Cup and Prize, the university’s highest honor for excellence in teaching. This summer she will teach and perform at BU’s Tanglewood Institute and at the Duxbury Music Festival. Her teachers have included Karen Tuttle, Robert Swan, and David Holland.

Karen Ritscher, praised by The New York Times for her “superior musicianship,” is recognized internationally as a leading pedagogue, soloist and chamber musician. She has also served as principal violist of the Houston Grand Opera, the Dallas Opera, American Composers Orchestra and the Brooklyn Philharmonic. She has taught at many of the leading conservatories of the United States and her students hold prestigious posts in major orchestras, string quartets, and at universities throughout the world. She is on the viola faculty at the Manhattan School of Music, New York University, Boston University, and City University of New York. She has judged many international competitions, most recently the Primrose, in June of 2011. As a master class clinician and recitalist, she has appeared throughout the United States as well as Canada, Mexico, Spain, Czech Republic, Korea, Taiwan, and China. Her summer residencies have included the Aspen Music Festival, the Heifetz International Institute of Music, Litomisl International Masterclasses in the Czech Republic, and Domaine-Forget in Canada. Since its inception in 2002, she has served on the faculty of the annual Karen Tuttle Coordination Workshop.

Ritscher performs and records with the Azure Ensemble, a new music chamber group based in New York City. She has been a member of the Aureus Piano Quartet, Steve Reich Musicians, and St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble. She has toured and recorded with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, New York Philharmonic, and the Houston Symphony.

As a champion of living composers, Ritscher has commissioned and/or premiered works from many composers including Bruce Adolphe, Alexandra DuBois, Wendy Mae Chambers, Linda Bouchard, Tan Dun, Chen Yi, Bright Sheng, and Alice Shields. She has appeared at seven International Viola Congresses as featured soloist and presenter.

She is honored to have been the string consultant for the award-winning book by Madeline Bruser, The Art of Practicing; a Guide to Making Music from the Heart. She is the education editor of the Journal of the American Viola Society and a frequent contributor to string magazines.

In the spring of 2011, Ritscher became a certified teacher of Gabrielle Roth’s 5Rhythm™ Movement Practice. She teaches Rhythms™ in Boston and New York, as well as workshops throughout the world. See her website at


Sheila Browne, viola professor
Department of Music
University of Delaware
104 Amy du Pont Music Building
Newark, DE 19716
(302) 831-6849
Carrie Edinger
Special Project Coordinator,
   Community Music School
University of Delaware
209 Amy du Pont Music Building
Newark, DE 19716
(302) 831-1548
  • What will an auditor do during the workshop: An auditor can observe any of the five teachers' classes that will occur simultaneously in two hour increments.  Auditors can listen and ask questions but will not perform for the teachers.