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violin & viola


Violin & Viola, in-person


Ben Lorentzen is a veteran educator and musician.  He has been teaching since his days as a college student at Augustana College.  Mr. Lorentzen studied with Dr. Deborah Dakin, and graduated from Augustana College with a B.A in Music.  He was then accepted into the University of Wisconsin School of Music where he would receive his Masters Degree in Viola Performance under the tutelage of Professor Sally Chisholm.  

It was a work-study job as a reading tutor in the public schools of Madison, Wisconsin that further inspired a focus in education.  He began providing private instruction to aspiring musicians in the Quad Cities immediately after graduate school, went back to school to earn teaching certification through the Regents Alternative Path to Iowa Licensure...READ MORE

violin & viola

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jennifer pickering

Violin & Viola, in-person


Music has always had a place in Jenni’s life, from her earliest memories of singing with her parents while her dad accompanied on guitar. She began her own musical journey with classical strings in fourth grade at school, falling in love with the sound of the viola. After discovering her aptitude for music, she quickly added violin and clarinet, while pursuing vocal studies and guitar. 


Jenni was a member of the Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra while they held the title of the Illinois Youth Symphony of the year for several years running, and earned a spot to intern with the Elgin Symphony Orchestra during high school. Earning her bachelor’s degree from Augustana College she studied under Deborah Dakin, also earning a degree in English. She has played with many area ensembles from string quartets to Celtic ensembles and rock bands, including a season as principal violist for the Clinton Symphony Orchestra. Jenni has been teaching violin and viola of all levels for more than 20 years, 18 of those here in the Quad Cities.


Holding the personal philosophy that music should be accessible to everyone, she loves to explore and integrate diverse playing styles with classical technique, tailoring lessons to each student for a unique experience. Students from ages 5 to 75 thrive in her studio, with a focus on fusing musical development and enjoyment (along with a dash of hard work and more than a little laughter) as part of a well-rounded life experience. 


When Jenni isn’t teaching or rehearsing, you might find her at concerts and festivals, feeding her love of live music, working with nonprofits for social justice, or building custom dance (hula) hoops. She lives in Rock Island with her husband Gordon and their four cats Applesauce, Parmesan, Ovaltine Jenkins and Mission Figs.


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Scott Sund

Cello, in-person


I encourage my students to develop their musical skills by focusing on technique and sound production. Creating a solid foundation takes time and patience but it is essential if students are to become free to incorporate their own ideas and emotions in the music they are studying. I encourage students to listen carefully while practicing, learning to identify problem areas and find solutions. Playing the cello is a unique journey for every student.


I have been teaching cello privately in the Quad Cities for the past 29 years. I currently play in the Muscatine Symphony as well as the St. Ambrose Chamber Orchestra and the String Arts Trio.

hannah holman

Cello & Suzuki Cello, in-person or hybrid


Hannah Holman, cellist, joined the New York City Ballet Orchestra at the beginning of the 2012-2013 season. Her career has encompassed orchestral and chamber music, solo performances, and teaching. In a review of the second CD she recorded with pianist Rene Lecuona, Fanfare magazine declares, “her tone and technique are the stuff that cello legends are made of. Holman’s cello sings with a lustrous tone that’s hard to resist.” 


In addition to her work with the New York City Ballet Orchestra, Ms. Holman is the principal cellist of the Quad City Symphony, a position she has held since 2008...READ MORE



Bass, in-person or hybrid

Mike White is currently an Assistant Professor at Augustana College where he teaches applied double bass and string methods. He also holds faculty positions at St. Ambrose University and Cornell College, teaching applied double bass and bass guitar. Mike received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Double Bass Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Iowa where he studied with Professor Volkan Orhon. His dissertation, “The Double Bass Extension - A Compendium for Performance,” was developed as a technical guide for those using a C-extension on their instrument. Previously, Mike studied with Dr. William Koehler at Illinois State University where he received his Bachelor of Music degree...READ MORE

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