Was Suzuki a fraud?

Your 'hot spot' for all classical music subjects. Non-classical music subjects are to be posted in the Corner Pub.

Moderators: Lance, Corlyss_D

Post Reply
jbuck919
Military Band Specialist
Posts: 26728
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by jbuck919 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:07 am

l don't know whether or not this, which I picked up from Facebook, will come across as a successful link or not, nor have I the competence to comment on it, but I thought people might find it interesting.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldn ... expert.htm

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

lennygoran
Posts: 13848
Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2007 9:28 pm
Location: new york city

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by lennygoran » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:42 am

jbuck919 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:07 am
l don't know whether or not this, which I picked up from Facebook, will come across as a successful link or not, nor have I the competence to comment on it, but I thought people might find it interesting.
I clicked and got this:


Sorry
We cannot find the page you are looking for.

The page may have been moved, updated or deleted.
There might be a problem with the website.
You may have typed the web address incorrectly. Please check the address and spelling.

Please also try the following:

Use the A-Z index;
Use the navigation bar above or the list of options below.
Check the @Telegraph Twitter account for site status updates.
If you still encounter problems, then please contact us.

Regards, Len :?:

jbuck919
Military Band Specialist
Posts: 26728
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by jbuck919 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:58 am

Well I got the same thing. I tried hard to get a link to the original article. Maybe one of our geniuses can figure this out, but otherwise I suppose it is a dead thread.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

John F
Posts: 19746
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 4:41 am
Location: Brooklyn, NY

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by John F » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:21 am

I Googled on Suzuki and fraud, and there was the article at the top of the page.

This seems to me over the top. Whatever Suzuki's life story may have been, nobody is claiming that Suzuki's system doesn't work or that he didn't invent it. Surely that's what really matters. As for "the biggest fraud in music history," there have been far more consequential ones, such as Fritz Kreisler attributing some of his own compositions to 18th century Italian composers.

Violin teacher Suzuki is the biggest fraud in music history, says expert
Robert Mendick
25 Oct 2014

Over the past five decades, millions of children – starting as young as three – have learnt to play the violin all using the same system. But now the Japanese music teacher behind the Suzuki method has been unmasked as a liar and a fraud.

According to his critics, Dr Shinichi Suzuki invented his early life story and used false claims – such as being a friend of Albert Einstein and learning to play with one of Berlin’s greatest teachers – to peddle a method of teaching the violin and other musical instruments that netted him a fortune.

The system has become the pre-eminent method for teaching children to play music in many countries around the world. Dr Suzuki’s philosophy of teaching involves getting children to begin as young as possible – ideally before they are five years old – and teaching them pieces from memory which they play repeatedly.

Dr Suzuki travelled to Germany in the 1920s where he claims he came under the guardianship of Einstein, who was a keen amateur violinist. It is claimed Dr Suzuki, who died at the age of 99 in 1998, studied with Karl Klingler, one of the leading violinists and teachers of the era. From those heady origins, Dr Suzuki went on to formulate his own teaching method that has been followed by children everywhere.

Now his critics are claiming that he made up his back story. “I think it is one of the biggest frauds in music history,” said Mark O’Connor, a violin teacher and professional fiddler who has spent years delving into Dr Suzuki’s past. “I don’t believe anybody has properly checked his past.”

Mr O’Connor has detailed his allegations in a series of posts on his internet blog site. Under his latest posting, last week, entitled “Suzuki’s biggest lie”, Mr O’Connor has posted a page from the Berlin music conservatory where Dr Suzuki claimed to have studied. Mr O’Connor says the page shows that Dr Suzuki, aged 24 in 1923, was rejected after failing his audition.

Mr O’Connor writes “Shinichi Suzuki had no violin training from any serious violin teacher that we can find. He was basically self-taught, beginning the violin at the age of 18, and it showed. He was never allowed a position in any orchestra.”

According to the British Suzuki Institute, there are currently more than a quarter of a million Suzuki students being taught by 8,000 teachers worldwide. Minette Joyce, the institute’s administrator, said: “The idea behind the Suzuki method is people can be taught to play an instrument to the best of their ability. It isn’t designed to turn out professional musicians but to enable children to play regardless of their ability and to increase their enjoyment of the music.”

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldn ... xpert.html
John Francis

maestrob
Posts: 5462
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 11:30 am

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by maestrob » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:38 am

Thanks, gentlemen. That's quite a story!

living_stradivarius
Posts: 6710
Joined: Tue Jul 11, 2006 9:41 pm
Location: Minnesnowta
Contact:

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by living_stradivarius » Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:29 pm

jbuck919 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:07 am
l don't know whether or not this, which I picked up from Facebook, will come across as a successful link or not, nor have I the competence to comment on it, but I thought people might find it interesting.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldn ... expert.htm
You'd be hard-pressed to find high-caliber professional violinists who would tell you they started out with the Suzuki method.

Prodigies typically start with Schradieck, Ševčík, and possibly Wohlfart before they are even allowed to practice playing actual melodies (as per Suzuki). Dorothy Delay's pedagogical sequence was quite similar to this. The Suzuki publications are probably a less expensive means of access to a number pieces that violinists do use in their performance repertoire, however.

All that being said, Suzuki did make violin music more accessible to young children who didn't have access to premier conservatory talent, so it's difficult to condemn the man for lying about his credentials.
Image

mikealdren
Posts: 286
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 10:40 am

Re: Was Suzuki a fraud?

Post by mikealdren » Fri Sep 14, 2018 3:01 am

"You'd be hard-pressed to find high-caliber professional violinists who would tell you they started out with the Suzuki method. You'd be hard-pressed to find high-caliber professional violinists who would tell you they started out with the Suzuki method."

Rachel Barton
Hilary Hahn
Leila Josefewicz
Jennifer Koh
Anne Akiko-Meyers
Arabella Steinbacher

Many people do start with the Suzuki method but the successful ones move on to conventional education quickly.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 23 guests