Originally from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Vanessa received a Master of Music, a Bachelor of Music, as well as a Performance Diploma from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where she studied violin with Mimi Zweig, Kathleen Winkler, and Baroque violin with Stanley Ritchie. Vanessa is currently pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Studies degree at the University of Windsor, with a focus on violin pedagogy. In addition, Vanessa received an ARCT Teachers Diploma in piano from the Royal Conservatory of Music. Vanessa has spent summers touring with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada; participating in the Casalmaggiore International Festival in Italy where she studied chamber music with the Penderecki String Quartet and other internationally known artists; teaching in Tuscany for a Professional Teachers Workshop alongside Mimi Zweig; and performing in the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony.
Vanessa's passion for teaching was sparked at the Jacobs School of Music where she had the opportunity to serve as Mimi Zweig's teaching assistant for several years at the Indiana University String Academy. The Academy is respected as one of the finest training programs for young violinists in the world. Vanessa brought this exceptional experience to the Algoma Conservatory of Music in Sault Ste. Marie, where she has developed a thriving violin studio, a series of group violin classes, youth orchestras, and a variety of introductory music classes for young children. Vanessa was also a member of the Algoma String Quartet and the Très Chic Piano Trio. In the summer of 2013, Très Chic was accepted into the Chamber Music Residency for Pre-Formed Ensembles at the Banff Centre for the Arts, and performed in the renowned Rolston Hall.
Vanessa is thrilled to bring her knowledge, experience, and love for teaching to the Laurier String Academy!