Conservatory Strings

Children's Strings orchestra Santa Monica, Ca

Conservatory Strings is an intermediate/advanced level learning and performance ensemble for elementary age violin, viola, cello and string bass students.

violin_viola_children_youth_orchestasMembers will learn exciting pieces and develop music skills such as sight reading, rhythmic development, and chamber playing. They will also develop social skills within a structured musical environment. Parents can expect rewarding growth and ever increasing appreciation of music. Our staff will prepare students for middle school performance levels and help them realize their maximum potential as young musicians.

Students take part in 25 after-school rehearsals on Fridays and at least two concerts during the season.

Online registration begins September 2016 at the Santa Monica Conservatory of Music. It will be followed by orientation for parents and students on September 30th at 4:30 pm. Students should bring their instruments.

Weekly Rehearsals
Fridays, 4:30 – 6:00 pm, September to mid-May 2016.

To participate, students should pre-register and pay a $600 tuition fee. This fee is reduced to $450 for students taking private lessons at the conservatory.

The Santa Monica Conservatory of Music
1501 Colorado Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90404
Call/Text: (310)576-3600


John Redfield strings orchestra santa monicaJohn Redfield began playing cello at the age of 8, and with the help of private teachers practiced hard throughout Elementary, Middle and High School and was awarded a full scholarship to Indiana University where he attended private studies and master classes with the world renowned Hungarian cellist and teacher Janos Starker.

Starker’s teacher was Schiffer, Schiffer’s teacher was David Popper, and now the Popper Methodology is taught by John Redfield at the Santa Monica Conservatory of Music. No cello methodology can compare to the rigors or rewards of the Popper Methodology, an essential for all aspiring professional cellists.

After living in Italy and performing throughout Europe for 13 years, John Redfield returned to Santa Monica, co-founded the Elemental Strings youth orchestra, is currently Founder/Director of the Santa Monica Conservatory of Music, as well as a member of the SMMUSD District Advisory Committee for the Performing Arts.

His numerous current and past cello students include prizewinners as well as those pursuing music at Yale, NYU, Georgetown, USC, and UCLA. As a performer, in his little free time from teaching, John has chosen to dedicate himself to performances of the solo cello repertoire (Bach, Kodaly, Cassado, Hindemith, etc.) in 3-4 recitals per year. John plays a Dutch cello dated 1700.

Raquel-Ravaglioli-violin-lessons-in-Santa-MonicaRaquel Ravaglioli graduated from the University of the Pacific, Conservatory of Music, with a Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy and a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance. Raquel is a Board Certified Music Therapist, and has been teaching private and group string instruction for over a decade. She is currently completing her Master of Arts degree in Creative Arts Therapies, Music Therapy option at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.

Raquel has been playing the violin for almost 25 years. She has participated in numerous all state orchestras and competitions, performed multiple solo recitals, was concert master of the University Symphony Orchestra, and attended Brevard Music Center performing with Yo-Yo Ma and Andre Watts. Raquel is also proficient in chamber music, fiddling, contemporary works, pop, and jazz. Raquel continues her professional career as a violinist as a member of the Local 47 Musicians Union of Los Angeles. She currently plays in the Santa Monica Symphony and has performed and/or recorded around the world in venues including Capitol Records, Sydney Opera House, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dorothy Chandler, and in Viterbo, Italy.

As a music therapist, Raquel has experience working with children, teens, and adults with a variety of abilities, students who have cochlear implants and other socio-emotional needs, trauma induced adolescents, older adult psychiatric patients, adult medical patients, and an internship at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles.

As a teacher with the Santa Monica conservatory, Raquel’s philosophy incorporates providing a strong technical foundation through standard and adapted techniques. She believes in a structured environment which allows for flexibility and creativity.

Virginie-dAvezac-viola-n-violin-lessons-Santa-MonicaThe French violist Virginie d’Avezac began her musical studies with the Piano at the age of 5 and entered the Bordeaux National Conservatory at the age of 10. At 14, she found her true musical calling and began studying the viola.

She received first prizes from the Bordeaux Conservatory in viola, chamber music, harmony and counterpoint.

Virginie studied with two of France’s most respected violists, Tasso Adamopoulos and Serge Collot. She has played in many prominent orchestras across France and North Africa, including the National Orchestra of Ile de France, the National Orchestra of Bordeaux, the Youth Orchestra of the Mediterranean and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Morocco.

For 6 years, Virginie was professor of viola and violin at the Cognac Conservatory of Music and was the conductor of the school’s string orchestra. An avid chamber musician, Virginie performs regularly with the pianist Zachary Deak.

In September 2012, the Magnolia quartet of which she is a founding member, was admitted to study at the prestigious European center of chamber music, Proquartet, in Paris. They have participated in Master Classes and received encouragement from such musical figures as Guy Danel (Danel quartet), Vaclav Remes (former first violin and founding member of the Prazak Quartet), Eric Robberecht (violin solo of “la Monnaie” symphony orchestra in Brussels), Günther Pichler and Valentin Erben (Alban Berg quartet), and Louis Fima (Arpegione quartet). Since her arrival in Los Angeles in February 2016, Virginie has been playing with Kaleidoscope, Lyra Chamber orchestra and the LA Jewish Symphony and she has joined the String Mob ensemble for several music scoring. She is also the new principal viola of Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra and a new violin/viola teacher at the Santa Monica Conservatory.

Interested in many different styles of music, Virginie has performed with pop singers as Rivkah, Baden-Baden and Marie-Flore, the Malagasy artist Erick Manana, the tango group Tengo tango, and the French rock singer Hervé Esno.