OH BABY: Suzuki School of Music - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

OH BABY: Suzuki School of Music


In this Oh Baby report, try to imagine the world without music - no lullabies, no happy birthday song, no wedding march, no singing-along to your car radio.

We introduce a group of people who believe in the power of music.

Today as teenagers, they play ''Hungarian Dance Number Five'', But they all started here as young children, playing variations on ''Twinkle Twinkle Little Star'' as part of University of Northern Iowa's Suzuki School.

"I just begged my parents, please please can I?"

"I kept telling my parents I need to play violin and they thought it was just one of those things where I start and quit....For two years I begged them to play, so from age 6 to 8," said Suzuki violinist Raquel Williams.

Each student starts for a different reason.

"It's a requirement to play at least one instrument in our family, so we're not allowed to quit until 7th grade, so we wanted to stick with it," said Elizabeth and Alice Bailey.

But all of them studied the Suzuki method, which encourages children to start as early as three years old.

"You wouldn't prohibit a child to learn to speak until a certain age, so learning music is the same as learning a language," said instructor Cathy Craig.

In the Suzuki method, children learn music like they learn to speak: listening and imitating. Each student learns the same songs in the same order and play together regularly. They say music shapes them.

"There's something about being part of a group," said violinist Jon Griffith.

"I go to all state or a recital and realize there are a million people who can play better than I can. It doesn't mean I'm not good, but allows to see so much opportunity for growth. And that's helped me in all my activities," said Williams.

Try to imagine life without music, you can't. You couldn't watch a movie without music. You couldn't watch a commercial without music.

As this Suzuki group of 175 students, ages three to 18, and parents, too, get ready for their spring recital, the sentiment is the same: "Life without music would be really difficult.''

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