Faculty

Shana Guidi owns and operates the Monarch Suzuki Academy. In addition to maintaining the daily operations of the school, she has a violin studio, teaches early childhood music classes at Monarch. She is a regular performer and workshop clinician in the central Texas area.

Before opening MSA in 2008, Shana taught orchestra and Suzuki violin at McKelvey elementary school in the Parkway School district in St. Louis, Missouri. In 2004, she recieved her Masters degree in Music and Human Learning at the University of Texas at Austin, where she studied violin with Brian Lewis and music education and research with Dr. Robert Duke, Dr. Laurie Scott, and Dr. Eugenia Costa-Giomi. While at the University of Texas, Shana was involved with the UT string project, where she was the director of the Suzuki preschool program in addition to teaching music theory, technique and repertoire classes, and private lessons.

Shana received her Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education and completed her long-term Suzuki teacher training with Carol Dallinger at the University of Evansville. Shana is a registered teacher for books one through eight and Suzuki Early Childhood Education with the Suzuki Association of the Americas. Before beginning her undergraduate studies, Shana studied with Winifred Crock in St. Louis, where she began playing Suzuki violin at the age of three. Currently, she is a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, Texas Music Educators Association, and the American String Teachers Association.

In her free time, Shana enjoys spending time with her husband, David, who is active in the Austin jazz community as a performer, teacher, and composer and their one-year-old daughter, Charlotte, who is a boisterous and joyful participant in Monarch’s early childhood music classes!

Beth Ringel holds the degree of Bachelor of Music in Cello Performance from the Hartt School of Music (Hartford, Connecticut).   While at Hartt, Beth received her first exposure to the Suzuki method as well as the successes a well-organized program could have, and was motivated to complete the two-year teacher training course for Suzuki Cello with Pamela Devenport.  She continued her musical education at the University of Colorado-Boulder, where she received the Master of Music in Cello Performance in 2006. While in Colorado, Beth maintained a private Suzuki studio, as well as teaching cello through Continuing Education at CU and the Parlando School for the Arts and chamber music for Boulder Suzuki Strings.

Beth performs as a duo with her husband, pianist Alex Maynegre, and has performed in orchestras in Texas, Colorado, North Carolina and Connecticut.  As a strong believer in life-long learning, she is currently studying the banjo. She also participates in Suzuki Early Childhood Education classes with her two-year old son, Oscar.  Beth is a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and a registered teacher for Suzuki Cello Books 1-10.

Rixi Rosenberg-Melton has more than 25 years of music study and performance experience in Austin. She began with 7 years classical training on piano with Dr. Betsy Parker (just around the block from Monarch) leading into a long relationship with the guitar. She has also, since, revisited the violin. Rixi holds Suzuki guitar certification, books 1-3 under the expertise of Suzuki guitar teacher-trainer, Andrea Cannon. She began studying the classical guitar amidst a decade’s long pursuit of traditional music, in which time she won second place in a mountain flat-picking competition. She continues to travel to music festivals to learn and share various styles of music.

Rixi earned a B.A. of liberal arts with a focus in classical civilizations at U.T., Austin.  She has been teaching guitar for over two years and has enjoyed being a Monarch Suzuki parent for more than four years.  She brings that parent experience to her teaching, with first-hand knowledge of the teacher-student-parent triangle.

Kathryn Drake   Kathryn Drake is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree from the Butler
School of Music at the University of Texas at Austin, where she studies violin with Professor Sandy Yamamoto.

Kathryn began her music education with the Suzuki Method at the age of four. In addition to teaching at Monarch Suzuki Academy, Kathryn serves as a faculty member of the UT String Project, participates as a member of the UT Symphony Orchestra, and collaborates with a local Austin band called Light Horse Harry. She is also a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and the Greater Austin Suzuki Association.

Interested in music and community cultivation, Kathryn works with Anthropos Arts to provide musical education to children in the central Texas area. When she’s not practicing, Kathryn can be found enjoying the outdoors (running, hiking, biking, yoga), a good book, or a quality cup of coffee!

Alex Caplis-Tuttle PhotoAlexandra Caplis-Tuttle receives her Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance from Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas in August 2014. Alex has acted as Concertmaster of both the Texas State Symphony and the Texas State Opera Orchestras and enjoys performing with the Myriad String Quartet.

Alex instructs group classes and conducts private lessons for the Texas State University Strings Project, where she led their first preschool class. In addition to maintaining her own private studio and leading beginning technique classes for groups of the Mariachi Infantil, she acts as an annual guest clinician at Judson Middle School. During the summer, she acts as a counselor for the Texas State Strings Camp, where she has had the opportunity to coach chamber music, lead violin sectionals, assist in the preparation of All-State etudes, and teach classes in Music History and Music Theory.

Alex is a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, the American String Teacher’s Association, and the Texas Music Educators Association. She completed the Suzuki Book 1 teacher training course with Dr. Laurie Scott, Pedagogy Professor at University of Texas, and plans on pursuing certifications for all of the Suzuki violin books. Alex recently participated in a masterclass conducted by Dr. Steven Redfield, and has participated in masterclasses conducted by performers from the Juilliard School both as a chamber musician and solo violinist. She has studied privately with Dr. Lynn F. Ledbetter at Texas
State, Mr. Long Zhou of the San Antonio Symphony, and the late Mr. Clive Amor.

small profile picCharlotte Howenstein received a Master of Music in Composition from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Composition from Kansas State University. She has taught for more than 10 years and loves being a life-long learner of the musical language and the art of teaching.
Having learned about the Suzuki method in 2011, Charlotte fully identifies with the Suzuki philosophy that “every child can” and “successful learning occurs in many small steps rather than one big step.”

Charlotte enjoys using Music Mind Games to make theory a favorite and accessible subject for students of all ages and instruments. She strives to employ methods, materials and technology that allow the student to discover the joy of making music. Music is incredibly rewarding, but there is no shortcut to acquiring this skill! “Ability = Knowledge + 10,000 Repetitions”
Charlotte is an active composer, accompanist, and organist. She is also an active member of various music organizations such as the National Federation of Music Clubs, and the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. Sight-reading is one of her favorite musical activities! She enjoys spending free time with her husband and their dog, Ender.

22125-20140109110300In addition to Monarch Suzuki Academy, Rebekah Blackner is currently an instructor with Austin SoundWaves, and the UT Austin String Project. She is also the Mendez Middle School Orchestra Assistant. Rebekah participated in the Deer Valley Emerging Quartet Intensive Seminar with the Muir Quartet and Composer, Joan Towers this summer.

Rebekah received her Master of Music in Violin Performance from University of Utah and a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from Utah State University. Her Suzuki registered  training includes the ‘Every Child Can’ and ‘Suzuki Principles in Action’ courses in addition to Violin units 1-8.