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Learn to Play By Ear!

Level 1 & 2 Workshops Nov 27-Dec 2

Level 1
Level 2

Play by Ear Level 1 Online Intensive

Play by Ear - Level 1 is a week long Ear Training Intensive workshop for string players who want ditch the sheet music and be able to pick out melodies by ear. Together we will unlock the mystery of how to hear music and translate it to a string instrument without having to look at music notation.

Developing this new skill will allow you to pick out tunes at jam sessions, learn in workshops with your favorite fiddler or play tunes by ear at home.  It will help you when friends ask you to "sit in" with your fiddle or when you want to pick out a string part in your favorite pop song.  

By the end of the week you will be able to learn a tune by ear without simply having to guess at notes.  You will understand the direction of the notes, how to hear intervals and how to play them on your instrument.

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 Level 1 Workshop Schedule

Monday Nov 27- Saturday Dec 2 

  • Each day you will get a short "lesson" video to watch (around 10 mins long) on your own time. 
  • Get your day started with MUSIC FIRST: Join live practice sessions from 7:30-7:50 am Monday- Friday to practice the skills learned in the lessons (replays available).
  • You will have a challenge to complete every day to solidify the skill we are working on for that day.   Post about your challenge inside the community page to earn badges!
  • The intensive includes one 20 minute private session scheduled with Laurel, flexibly scheduled, where we will cover any questions, weak spots, or just practice together where YOU are at.
  • On Saturday Dec 2nd from 10:30-11:30 am CST we will have an hour long online class where we will learn an entire tune by ear using the skills we developed throughout the week.
  • Each student who completes all challenges will receive a graduation certificate and will be eligible to sign up for Level 2.
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Reserve Your Spot!

Want to up-level what you thought was possible with your playing in just one week?  If you are ready to learn brand new skills that will transform the way you relate to music then sign up now! Class size is limited due to the one-on-one element of the intensive.  

Enroll!

Play by Ear Level 2 Online Intensive

Have you ever wanted to add your own fiddle parts to a jam session?  Play by Ear - Level 2 will teach you how to free your inner musician to create musical moments in real time whether you prefer to play with others or alone.

In Play by Ear - Level 2 we will continue building on what was learned in level 1. We will be exploring further, delving into learning how to use our ear training to initiate micro-improvisations.  This new skill will allow you to create while you play during jam sessions, performances or in the comfort of your own home.

By the end of the week you will be able to add your very own original fiddle parts to pop, folk or fiddle tunes in the moment.

Sign Up

Level 2 Workshop Schedule

Monday Nov 27- Saturday Dec 2

  • Each day you will get a short "lesson" video to watch (around 10 mins long) on your own time. 
  • Get your day started with MUSIC FIRST: Join live practice sessions from 8:00-8:20 am Monday- Friday to practice the skills learned in the lessons (replays available).
  • You will have a challenge to complete every day to solidify the skill we are working on for that day.   Post about your challenge inside the community page to earn badges!
  • The intensive includes one 20 minute private session scheduled with Laurel, flexibly scheduled, where we will cover any questions, weak spots, or just practice together where YOU are at.
  • On Saturday Dec 2nd from 12:00-1:00 pm CST we will have an hour long online class where we will learn an entire tune by ear using the skills we developed throughout the week.
Sign Up

Testimonials

 

Shoba

These videos are great and this website and its usability is fantastic. Nicely done!

Katie

I highly recommend this course to anyone who plays fiddle.  As a beginner, I was afraid the Ear Training Intensive would be over my head.  Laurel’s method of teaching is very inclusive and easy to understand, however, and I never felt left behind.  Besides learning play-by-ear skills, it helped me understand my instrument better and advanced my playing beyond just notes on a page.  

Sandy

I have to tell you how impressed I am with these online lessons. I just love them! I love how you present everything listening and watching you play, and I really look forward to practicing everyday. I was a little skepticalabout taking the online classes but they're working out really well. Fewer and fewer squeeks every day, lol. I've always wanted to play the violin, I'm 62 years old and this has been a real treat. Excited to try an in person workshop again. Thank you so much!!

Kristi

You are wonderful, Laurel, both in person and online. What a giving spirit you have! There are natural teachers and you are one. This is such a gift for me since me my stroke and concussions. A good stretch.

Michael 

The level-1 Ear Training Intensive Class was excellent. The instruction, material and format were perfect. My playing ability improved greatly after completing this course. Cudos to Laurel Parks for a very good and worthwhile series

Jenee

I took Laurel's on-line Ear Training course thinking that I wasn't very good at playing by ear and wondering if I could improve this skill. It was so facinating to take the class and figure out how to play by ear. I am proud to report that by the end of the class, I was able to pick up the notes easier. I'm not saying that I'm ready to join a band, but I've definitely improved.  During our one-on-one session, Laurel gave me a piece to figure out ... and I did it!  I'd recommend taking the class to anyone interested in learning how to improve playing by ear.

Ron

I don't read music.  In class, we when start talking about anything music theory related (sharps, flats, fifths, etc) my head starts to swell and nears explosion.  The Ear Training Intensive was so beneficial to me I can't even describe.  It was not as hard as I thought it was going to be and being able to go back and review as I needed was great.  It definitely helped my overall playing and retention.  I would do it again in a heartbeat!

 

Instructor Spotlight

Laurel Morgan Parks

 

Crossover violinist Laurel Morgan Parks has been following her musical path since the young age of 4 when her dad brought home a banged up fiddle with a bow that lacked most of its hairs - it was love at first listen!  As a professional musician Parks has performed with acts such as the Eagles, Sarah McLachlan, Amy Grant, Evanescence, Josh Grobin and Disturbed, but also with her own projects - The Wires String Duo, Of Tree, and In the Pines.  She has traveled throughout Asia, Europe and the United States, playing with her own bands, the Mantovani Orchestra and the Des Moines Symphony. Parks is currently the founder/instructor of Drunken Fiddles - a fiddle workshop for adults who want to learn to play stringed instruments from the absolute beginning while incorporating fiddle styles and outside-the-box techniques along the way.  When not performing or teaching Parks can be heard on the NPR affiliate radio station 91.9 Classical KC as the co-host of Sound Currents - a show dedicated to championing New Music.

 
Sign Up Now!

In addition to teaching, Laurel Parks and Sascha Groschang make up the Wires - an original modern string duo that composes music inspired by a variety of world styles.   Both instructors collaborate on course material.  Make sure you check out the Wires to hear styles and techniques headed your way!

Listen to The Wires

Free First Fiddle Lesson!

Sign up to get a free fiddle lesson now!  No instrument required.

Questions?

Laurel Parks
Founder/Instructor of Fiddle
[email protected]