Pedagogical Work

2000-2001 Substitute lecturer of modern violin at the Musikhochschule in Cologne
2003-2009 Lecturer for baroque violin, performance practice and chamber music at the Folkwang-Hochschule in Essen
2009 Guest lecturer at Western Illinois University

Lessons for various age and performance levels

Educational assistance to orchestral trainees and audition preparations in Dresden, Essen and Cologne

Violin sectional rehearsals and the preparation of concert programs as the concertmaster of various ensembles

Lecturer for the State Youth Orchestra of Rheinland-Pfalz, the Orchestra of the Dresden University and the Orchestra of the BDLO

As concertmaster of Musica Antiqua Köln preparing concert programs, workshops during concert tours

Lecturer at the International Bach Academy in Uzhgorod, Ukraine (at the invitation of the Goethe-Institut)

My concept of violin instruction

Right from the beginning of my studies with Professor Franzjosef Maier in Cologne, I was confronted with various traditions of violin playing and teaching. Maier came partly from the German violin school, which goes back to Joseph Joachim; on the other hand, he is a pioneer of playing the historical violin. I was already familiar with the methods of Ivan Galamian during my studies at the Folkwang School. I completed my studies in Cologne with Primoz Novsak, a Max Rostal student. This diverse and a non-dogmatic approach to violin technique and interpretation defines both my performance and violin instructions to the present day. This is demonstrated by the fact that I give concerts both on the modern as well as the historic violin. My experiences as a concertmaster of traditional orchestras and as primarius of Musica Antiqua Köln and other ensembles for early music, confirms my view that historic and modern violin playing are complementary and stimulate each other in a technical and artistic way.

I teach
- violin, baroque (classical) violin, viola, chamber music
- music students, professional musicians, advanced young, ambitious amateur   musicians
- according to the personality and the goals of each student
- as a dialogue partner

The aim of teaching is the student's independence

- in developing and maintaining the abilities on the instrument
- in understanding the work and aesthetic discernment
- in acquiring an appropriate stylistic interpretation
- in developing the ability to express one's self

Technique It starts with an analysis of personal strengths and weaknesses, taking the functional anatomy into account. With special exercises, I try to support the refinement of the body image. To develop the instrumental skills, I also use new neuro-biological findings and neuro-scientific results. Every era of violin playing has had its own playing techniques. It is possible to achieve the individually proper way of playing. The artistic goals must always be kept in mind here.

Studying works I think the ability to thoroughly and creatively read musical texts is imperative; this is supplemented by the critical study of sources. This way, the musical text becomes a source of inspiration. Studying the other parts in chamber music works and solo concerts is unfortunately often neglected, but frequently provides important interpretative clues. Deliberately working on the bowing and bow division is a prerequisite for clearly portraying the accentuation, articulation, dynamics and timbre. This also includes the practice and theory of fingering based on efficient, individual and historical aspects.

Piano accompaniment
I do this myself for many violin concertos and sonatas.

Practise I present a large selection of practise techniques during my classes. This makes it possible to find the right technique for each task and to arrive at a personal practicing style that delivers the maximum benefit in the shortest period of time. Using proven methods, the students can develop new exercises that have been adapted to their own needs.

Structuring /
"One must not impose one's way of feeling on others!" "That's not necessary but one must awaken, direct and be able to shape the feelings of others without affecting, suppressing or even destroying their individual way of feeling, if they are not obviously on the wrong path." (Friedrich Wieck, "Clavier und Gesang" 1852)
I can only agree with this.

Embellishments, Improvisation, Cadenzas Knowledge of the art of ornamentation is essential for the performance of music up to the beginning of the 19th century. Improvisational techniques can lead to  the composition of one´s own cadenzas for violin concertos. This can be demonstrated with  my own cadenzas for violin concertos of the 18th century.

Repertoire Unfortunately, only a small part of the violin repertoire is being played. In my classes I encourage students to deal comprehensively with the works of each era. There is a lot of important music to discover; the well-known masterpieces are better understood in their contemporary context. This makes it possible to make concert programs more suitable for the musician and more interesting for the public.

Auditions I have been preparing students for auditions for many years.  As concertmaster, I have heard numerous auditions, which allows for realistic preparation. In particular, I teach orchestral excerpts keeping the context of the entire piece in mind.

Stage fright Is an unpopular topic, but (almost) everyone has it. In class, I try to obtain improvements through careful preparation for the performance and by strengthening one's self-esteem at the same time. It may be useful to use the relevant literature for this purpose.