Viola Teachers


Schedule Viola Lessons


Meet Our Viola Teachers!

Annija Kerno

I teach violin and viola. As a dual citizen of Latvia and the United States, I have performed in a variety of concert venues throughout Europe and America. Most recently, I concluded my two year residency with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to work with many of the major classical musicians in the world. Among them are Ricardo Muti, Christoph Eschenbach, Yo-Yo Ma, Kristjan Jarvi, and Ken-David Masur, amongst many others. I recently performed a solo in the bi-annual North American Latvian Song and Dance Festival, where I collaborated with Latvian musicians from all over the world to create a performance of choral and orchestral music written solely by Latvian composers. I hold an active private studio of violinists and violists, and have also taught group classes through a variety of programs in Chicago, New York City, and Philadelphia. I believe that every student should have access to a quality music education and I realize that all students are different. As a teacher, I accept the differences in my students and adapt my lesson plans to each student, so they can achieve their best. - Read More About Annija

Kyle Blessing

I teach violin, viola, piano, guitar, bass, and ukulele. I took up playing viola at age 10 in my elementary school orchestra. A year later I took up guitar and began studying both instruments privately, as well as playing in orchestra, jazz band, and chamber ensembles at school. In 2014 I moved to Philadelphia to study viola performance at Temple University, but I soon switched over to studying composition and music technology. During my time at Temple, I also became more and more involved in playing with various rock bands in the local DIY scene, and in the last couple of years I've released a number of albums and had the amazing opportunity to tour up and down the east coast playing this music with some of the most wonderful and talented people I could have ever hoped to meet. As a teacher, I seek to inspire that same creative passion that has carried me through so many of the trials and tribulations of my own life. If you can create music for yourself, then you'll always have something positive to turn to no matter what else is going on. I emphasize good technique and reading ability in lessons, but also make sure that my students know how to improvise and ultimately, have fun making music they enjoy. - Read More About Kyle

Dakota Kievman

I developed a strong passion for the violin very early in my life. I started playing at age 2 after showing a strong interest while hearing a recording of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto in D major on the radio. My goal is to spread music to as many people as possible whether it be through performing or teaching. My philosophy is that anyone has the capacity to engage in music. Although I use mostly the same books for my lessons, I adapt my teaching style to fit the student. Beginning by cultivating the students’ love and patience for music practice, we work on the foundation that will develop a strong technique. - Read More About Dakota

Jenny Hackbarth

I teach violin, viola, cello, guitar, ukulele, and piano. I've been playing music on various instruments for nearly twenty years. I come from a family of musicians and grew up listening to a strange combination of classical music and the Beatles. I played in orchestras and ensembles all throughout grade school. I earned a BA in music production from the College of Media and Communication at Temple University, where I also electively studied music theory and technique. I started teaching while working at a music shop after graduating. I picked up some lessons as a substitute teacher when needed and quickly realized that I loved teaching. My students are a constant reminder of why I fell in love with music in the first place. I've learned that there is no one method that works for every student. I teach using a blended method catered to each student's individual needs, while making sure we don't forget to have fun! - Read More About Jenny

Emily Stewart

I teach violin and viola, piano and flute. I have been playing violin for 14 years.  I have a bachelor's degree in Violin Performance from Temple University. I have experience teaching private and group lessons to all ages in various programs throughout the city, including Play on Philly and Temple Music Prep. I emphasize technique and practice methods in lessons while fostering an appreciation for all forms of music. - Read More About Emily