It should be noted that two string pedagogues listed above, Paul Rolland and Shinichi Suzuki, have also exerted an influence on many contemporary amateur string players. Rolland pioneered new concepts regarding freedom of motion in violin playing as demonstrated in The Teaching of Action in String Playing, a University of Illinois String Teaching Research Project. Rolland produced seventeen demonstration films that correlated with his method book Prelude to String Playing , and many string educators have utilized his theories in teaching strings.
Suzuki's methodology, also referred to as Talent Education, is centered around the "mother-tongue method," defined by Suzuki in the following terms:
Key elements of Suzuki's Talent Education include:
- The philosophy that all children can be educated through the proper environment, and that environmental factors are more important in the musical growth of a child than so-called talent.
- Listening is emphasized, and students are encouraged to frequently listen to recordings of music they are learning.
- Parents are active participants in the student's learning process.
- Students begin lessons at an early age, sometimes as young as two.
- Students learn to play by rote.
- Each piece is memorized, even after reading music has commenced.
- Technique is learned through the repertoire found in Suzuki's music books.
- Teachers are encouraged to use physical activity games to free the body from tensions.
- Frequent performances are encouraged.
- Teachers emphasize proper posture, good sound production, and secure intonation.
A 1996 article cited the following statistics regarding the number of Suzuki pupils in America: "More than 5,000 teachers belong to the SAA [Suzuki Association of the Americas] and use Suzuki's philosophy and methodology with more than 150,000 students."