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A Mission Statement

Alicia Randisi-Hooker as a Suzuki Cello parent with daughter

I am, above all, a LOVER of life and a believer in the potential for nobility within each of us. I believe that people are hungry for beauty and for a positive way to express their innermost longings. Those who value relations relationship because they are involved with parents and other caring adults approach their lives in a way which may hurt others less. This is the essence of Suzuki Talent Education, which is the cornerstone of my philosophical approach. In my practice as a cello teacher, I endeavor to listen to and watch closely each individual student, in order to access the special inner qualities of each, so that they may bring forth the voice of their own hearts. This is not an instant endeavor. It requires commitment and perseverance on the part of all concerned. In more than two decades of teaching, I have yet to meet a student or a parent who has regretted the undertaking.

Alicia Randisi and Lisa Liske-Doorandish after a cello performance and workshop in Blacksburg, VA   The cello provides a unique vehicle to EDUCATE both young and old about our culture, and the cultures of other lands. The cello has a voice that calls to the soul and to the human heart. When you listen to the cello, you might be reminded of the great humanitarian tradition for which the cello has provided a "soundtrack" throughout its history. The great Spanish cellist, Pablo Casals played as a statement against the fascistic regime of Francisco Franco, remaining in exile from his native land for the rest of his life in protest. The Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, played at the fall of the Berlin wall in support of the end of communism. The "cellist of Sarajevo" played in the streets each day as the bombs fell all around him, during the war between Serbia and Bosnia. Beloved contemporary cellist YoYo Ma has been taking his cello around the world to explore ancient traditions and cultural influences through his Silk Road Project. His projects with Brazilian and Argentine musicians inspired a renewed interest in the Tango and the music of Latin America. You may have seen the film "The Soloist", the true story about a gifted young cellist beset by a tragic mental disorder, whose music redeems his suffering

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These, and many less well-known artists and their stories, comprise the lineage of the cello. When your child takes up the study of this great and noble instrument, he or she is joining a long line of insightful, sensitive, and socially responsible human beings who have played it and loved its rich and satisfying sound. From the study of this instrument, the attainment of an appreciation for ARTISTRY, indeed the possibility of producing art oneself, can be realized. While it is not necessarily my goal to produce only professional musicians, the work of learning to play well has far reaching benefits for all students.

The pursuit of excellence in playing the cello produces PERSEVERANCE from which PROGRESS can be made in all areas of life. Upon hearing the Suzuki children at Carnegie Hall in 1964, Casals remarked: "Perhaps it is these children who will save the world". Even if this lofty ambition cannot be realized, we can attempt to make the world a better place. It is my aim, and my honor to try.