September Teacher Spotlight: Kathy Hart

What city do you currently teach in?

Knoxville, TN

What instruments do you play/ teach?


Knoxville Symphony Youth Orchestra Association Conductor

University of Tennessee – String Methods Lecturer

How did your career in music get started?

I entered college as a business major with a violin scholarship which required me to play in the university orchestra and take private lessons.  My applied instructor had just been hired at the University of Tennessee and was a Suzuki Teacher Trainer.  She encouraged me to take her Suzuki Pedagogy course and by the end of my freshmen year I was a music education major!

What’s your favorite song to play?

There are many favorites!  It usually depends on my mood.  I love unaccompanied Bach and my favorite Romantic Concerto is Mendelssohn.

What other hobbies besides music do you have?

I love to travel!

What has been your favorite moment as a teacher?

I am so proud of my students – they all have moments that make me burst with pride.  I’ve had students in my 25 years of teaching who have won concerto competitions, been concertmasters, been awarded music scholarships, been placed in the National Youth Orchestra of the US.

What do you find to be the best motivator for students?

Ben and Jerry’s (Hart-Strings inside joke!)

Seriously – my high school students are mentors for the younger kids in our program.  Having a high school buddy really helps keep the younger kids engaged and excited about being a violinist.  The younger kids also see some of the cool things I do with my high school kids and stay in the program to be able to have the same experiences!  One of our favorites is going to Cincinnati each summer to visit with Paul and Jan Bartel!!

What are your future goals as a musician and teacher?

To be a consistent, positive, effective teacher and mentor for the amazing young adults that share their lives and accomplishments with me and continue to help them enjoy positive experiences through music.

Do you have any advice for aspiring musicians?

I try to talk to my kids who plan to go into a music career about the discipline and competition they are facing.  I think one of the most important factors is finding a teacher they will trust and enjoy working with in their college studies.

Fun fact?

I’ve known Paul Bartel since 1987 and I learn something new about instruments, music or life every time I visit the Baroque Violin Shop!  (At least twice a year)