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Just your friendly neighbourhood violin teacher.

Updated: Nov 6, 2020


Hello and welcome to my first blog post! Here is everything you need to know about my music background and teaching ethos.


Thank you for taking the time to be here and read my first blog post, I appreciate it! My name is Rachel, I am a Cheltenham based violin teacher and I have studied the instrument for over 20 years.


My background

I have performed and toured with orchestras, chamber ensembles and string quartets. I have also been involved in session work, pit work (musicals and opera), recording film music and compositions. I have performed in a number of venues in the UK, including, Cheltenham Town Hall, Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, The Colston Hall and St. George’s Hall in Bristol, Wells Cathedral, Bath Abbey, The Assembly Rooms and The Holbourne Museum in Bath.

Backing orchestra for Stefan Kelk
Gloucestershire Symphony
Bath Spa Orchestra

Ensembles I have played violin in, include, Future Dub Orchestra, Bristol Sinfonia, Gloucestershire Symphony Orchestra and South West Youth Orchestra, where I had the opportunity to be mentored and perform alongside Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra players. During my time performing in a string quartet, we were involved in workshops with the Carducci String Quartet.

Now, I have changed direction and I am the violinist for indie/rock covers band Hear The Spheres and loving it. How does a violinist fit into such a band you might ask? I'll be answering that question in a separate blog post. Yes, it's a whole story! It involves me being very bad at guitar and sometimes being demoted to the tambourine.

Hear The Spheres

My teaching ethos

My teaching ethos is simple, I am passionate about the violin and I want you to enjoy the instrument as much as I do. I offer one-to-one private lessons, allowing quality time to develop technique and musical skills with the repertoire of your choice. I might jump in and play a duet with you every now and again - the teacher has to have some fun too!

I teach all ages at all levels, so whether you or your child are a complete beginner or revisiting the instrument, I have experience of adapting lessons to your level. I have experience in working through exams with students, but if you would like to learn exam-free, I welcome this too! Lessons take place at my home in Prestbury, Cheltenham.

I pride myself in being fair and honest when it comes to pricing. There are no hidden costs with me. I offer hourly and 30 minute lessons, you can find pricing on my website. My T&C's are also written to be clear with no hidden messages, you can find this here.


Follow me for top tips

My aim is to pass on my skills to support your playing. If you play the violin or are currently learning and want some quick tips to help you progress, then make sure to follow me on Instagram @cheltenhamviolinteacher. I share short videos of me playing pieces that I enjoy and techniques on how you can develop your playing via IGTV. You may occasionally see snippets of the band pop up on my feed too!


What do you think?

I would love to hear your thoughts on what you'd like me to share, either on my blog or on my Instagram. I am here to listen to you!

If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch.

Rachel K-M.

P.S. I love GIFs and punny jokes, be warned.

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© 2020 by Rachel Knowles-Matthews, Cheltenham Violin Teacher