CSPA Instructors

Jerry Jay Cranford
Slawomir Dobrzanski
Laura Eakman
Kiirsi Maunula Johnson
Katie Knoles
Stephen Loch
George Matthews
Oscar Vazquez Medrano
Agustin Muriago
Cheryl Richt
Amy Rosine
Alex Shallenberg
Emily Trube
Christine Vavra
Kathy Voecks
David Wood

Community School for the Performing Arts and Manhattan Arts Center are pleased to announce the arrival of Dr. Laura Eakman as Viloin/Viola Teacher.

Laura currently teaches group violin classes at Swansea Elementary School as a teaching artist with El Sistema Colorado which serves primarily disadvantaged students in the Denver Area. Dr. Eakman also serves as head of the music department at Colorado Early Colleges, Parker where she instructs college-level Music Appreciation courses and leads the String Ensemble. She has been the primary violin teacher at Lake County Music and Bloomingdale School of Music, and held an adjunct faculty position teaching private violin and viola lessons and coaching chamber music at Hoffman Estates High School and Conant High School in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.

Laura received her Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder where she served as Erika Eckert’s teaching assistant and studied chamber music with members of the Takacs Quartet. Her doctoral thesis, Teaching the Violin with Purpose: strategies designed to foster musical, cognitive, and social development in low-income students, has been a resource for El Sistema sites, and has been adapted to suit the Suzuki philosophy in a forthcoming article in the American Suzuki Journal. 

Laura received both her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from Northern Illinois University in music performance and pedagogy where she studied with Richard Young and Anthony Devroye. Additional studies include coaching with Roger Chase, Mathias Tacke, and Robert Chen. Dr. Eakman's pedagogy training has included Suzuki registration with Ann Montzka-Smelser as well as classes and workshops with Mimi Zweig of Indiana University and Rebecca Henri of Peabody Conservatory.

An avid freelance and chamber musician, Laura has performed throughout the United States and internationally. As a chamber musician, Dr. Eakman has collaborated with the assistant concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, Michelle Kim, as well as renowned soloist, Elizabeth Pitcairn. She has worked with the Bill T. Jones and Arnie Zane Dance Company, performs with new music ensembles in Colorado, and is a founding member of the Avant Duo, Kylian Quartet, and Camus Quartet which toured the Netherlands in 2009. She has served as assistant principal violist with the Northbrook Symphony Orchestra, the Kishwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and the Lasalle Bank Messiah held at Chicago’s Civic Opera House.

Dr. Eakman will teach Group Violin lessons at Manhattan Arts Center and will have a private studio through Community School for the Performing Arts. For information on classes and lessons with Dr. Eakman, please contact Manhattan Arts Center at 785-537-4420.