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Karen Tuttle Viola Workshop

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January 11 – January 13, 2019

karen tuttle with viola

​Karen Tuttle

Program Description

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 11 – January 13, 2019
​Full Participant Early Registration Deadline: December 1, 2018
​Full Participant Early Registration Rate:$345
Registrations Dec. 2-Dec.15, 2018
​Full Participation Registration: $375
​Registration cuts-off on Dec. 15, 2018
AuditorAuditor Registration $150





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 mid-December.

​Friday​1:30pm​Workshop Check-in
​1:45-2:25pm​​Chin-Shoulder Diagnostic Presentation by Claire Stefani, Volute Services
​3:00-4:00pmIntroduction Session
​4:30-6:30pm​Session #1
​6:30-8:30pm​Dinner on your own - There are several options within walking distance
​8:30pm​Faculty Recital
​Saturday​9:00am-11:00pm​Session #2
​11:30-1:30pm​Session #3
​1:30-2:30pm​Lunch on your own; Pre-ordered box lunch is available for $10
​4:00-6:00pmPublic Masterclass
​Kim Kashkashian, Temple Music Prep1515 Market Street, Room 222 Philadelphia, PA
​Limited transportation to Masterclass may be available via UD Van for a fee of $10. Must email Carrie Edinger at before 1/4/19 if interested in transporation with us. Transportation is on a space available basis.
7:30pm​Banquet Dinner
​Catered by Home Grown Cafe, Newark, DE. Event in UD Roselle Center for the Arts.

8:30-9:30pm​Listening Sesson
​Sunday​9:00-11:00am​Final Masterclass Rehearsals, CFA 223
​9:30am-11:30amSession #4
​11:30-1:30pmGroup masterclass with all faculty and students


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 & age
  3. How long you have been studying
  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, 2018.

Chin-Shoulder Diagnostic Sessions with Claire Stefani, Volute Services

In addition to the three-day workshop, all participants are invited to meet with Claire Stefani of Volute Service for a 45-minute chin-shoulder diagnostic session at special workshop price of $80. Sign up in advance by emailing and view the informational flyer here.


Our Priority Hotels are the Embassy Suites (654 S College Avenue, Newark) and Homewood Suites (640 S College Avenue, Newark). The workshop rates are $109 and $133 per night respectively and includes a hot breakfast. The special room rate will be available until December 16th or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first. Free parking is available. Transportation Package users will catch our shuttle right in front of hotels. Registration for the transportation package will occur at Friday’s 1:30pm check in.

Local lodging options include:

​Hotel Name​Rate​Contact Info​Comment​Dist. from Conf.​Dist. from Main St./Food
​Embasy Suites by Hilton3 stars​$109.00 plus tax RESERVE NOW​654 S College Ave, Newark 302-368-8000​Primary Hotel includes buffet breakfast - rate guaranteed until Dec. 16​2.5 miles​3 miles
​Homewood Suites by Hilton3 stars​Estimated $133.00 plus tax​640 S College Ave, Newark 302-453-9700​Near Embassy Suites, walk over to catch workshop shuttle​2.5 miles​3 miles
​Baymont Inn Suites2 stars​Estimated $79.99 plus tax​630 S College Ave, Newark 302-722-4380​Near Embassy Suites, walk over to catch the workshop shuttle​2.5 miles​3 miles
​Springhill Suites by Marriott4 stars​Estimated $170 plus tax​402 Ogletown Rd, Newark 302-273-1000​Hotel offers roundtrip shuttle service to the Main St. area​1.5 miles​1 mile
​Courtyard Newark - University of Delaware4 stars​Estimated $250 plus tax​400 David Hollowell Dr, Newark 302-737-0900​UD's main hotel, off main campus, can walk to workshop​1.5 miles​1 mile
​Super 8 by Wyndham2 stars​Estimated$69.99 plus tax​268 E Main St, Newark 302-737-5050​Right on Main Street in the heart of downtown, can walk to workshop​About a mile​less than a block


WORKSHOP DIRECTOR 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


Sheila Brown, director

Sheila Browne, director

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. Sheila Browne will be starting her new appointment as Juilliard faculty violist for the new Tianjin-Juilliard School, slated to open fall of 2019.

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

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

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

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

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

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Karen Tuttle Viola Workshop
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Karen Tuttle Viola Workshop
  • School of Music
  • Amy E. du Pont Music Building
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-2578