Tampa Bay Music Academy is pleased to welcome Amanda Cappello as the newest member of our teaching staff! Amanda will be our first string teacher, giving us the opportunity to serve the needs of violin students in addition to other concentrations.

Amanda studied music at the University of South Florida where she received both a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music in violin performance. She began teaching private lessons in 2006 and also has experience in directing music competitions and festivals.

Amanda believes the student-teacher relationship is paramount in creating a successful learning environment in the studio. By getting to know each student as an individual, understanding his or her learning style, and pinpointing personal goals, she can help students reach their potential.

What is your favorite musical memory?
My favorite musical memory is very difficult to pinpoint…the one that stands out in my mind is a tour I did with several other violinist colleagues from USF. We played a concert of contemporary solo violin works that ended with a performance of “Gran Turismo” by Andrew Norman. It’s a piece based on the car race for 8 violins and it is an exciting, fun and REALLY challenging piece.

What is your favorite piece to perform?
[That’s] like picking a favorite child! I don’t think I could narrow it down to just one, so I’ll do a Top 5: Incantation by Augusta Read Thomas, Barber Violin Concerto, Xenia by Louis Andriessen, Suite Italienne by Igor Stravinsky and Rumi Setting by Augusta Read Thomas

What do you love about teaching?
I love teaching because you have the ability to really get to know the student, not only as a musician but as a person. There is a level of personal connection in one-on-one lessons that is much more difficult to achieve in the classroom.

What is your favorite violin teaching method?
For advanced students I don’t have a specific teaching method I focus on, because at that point the students own personal goals are much more varied and important. But for beginners I really enjoy using the Strictly Strings method; it gets students playing right away without needing to read music, though that follows quite quickly in the book. I find it to be a really great way to start students the right way; they learn the basics of the instrument, learn music and then they’re unstoppable!

What brought you to TBMA?
I came to TBMA because the philosophy is about the student and the student-teacher relationship. A lot of stores and academies are about profit margins, often at the expense of the student and teacher. It is refreshing to work in an environment where the student’s wellbeing and growth is most important.

Because violin requires meticulous muscle control, Amanda recommends that children be at least 5 years old before beginning lessons. At TBMA, we believe that piano is a great way to introduce your children to music lessons before they pick up another instrument, so we encourage children younger than 5 to build a strong musical foundation with piano lessons.

We’re excited to partner with Amanda as we work toward giving our students the best music education possible.

Welcome to TBMA, Amanda!