The Suzuki Program

    a group of kids playing the violin on stage

    About Dr. Shin-ichi Suzuki
    Dr. Suzuki believed that talent was not inborn but could be nurtured starting at a very young age in a nurturing environment. “We were all born with a high potential, and if we try hard, we can all become superior human beings and acquire talent and ability.” Suzuki believed that if all children of the world could develop beautiful hearts and minds through the study of music that perhaps we might have world peace.
    About our 2019-20 MNjcc Suzuki Program

    The MNjcc Suzuki Program (formerly the Bloor jcc Suzuki Program) was started in 1992 by May Ing-Ruehle and Louise Hanly. During 2019-2020 we will proudly celebrate our 28th season! Gretchen Paxson-Abberger has been the artistic director of 90 plus students since 1999. For the past 10 years we have also offered a 5-day summer music and arts day camp in July, boasting a roster of well-known guest artists, and our talented MNjcc Suzuki teachers. Along with our regular roster classes, we will continue to offer Adult String Ensemble Classes: Beginner and Intermediate levels, and a Tuesday morning Suzuki Pre-School Music classes (for 6 months – 3.5 years) taught by Alison Porter.

    Our students range in age from 3.5 to 18 years. Each student moves through the book levels at their own speed. 

    MNjcc Suzuki Students will receive:

    • Weekly violin and cello group classes
    • Weekly private lessons
    • Enrichment classes (note-reading, theory, musicianship, improv and ukulele)
    • A friendly community and supportive atmosphere
    • Chamber Music Ensembles (for advance book 5 students)
    • Advance teens will participate in Thanks to Dr. Suzuki, a collaborative concert of Suzuki Schools in the greater GTA community
    • Guest ensemble or performer to work with students and families
    • Performances during special events (solo recitals, graduation recitals, community concerts, ensemble recitals, and/or large Suzuki group concerts).
    • Community Outreach Performances (Remembrance Day, Chanukah celebrations, fundraising events, and seniors’ residence performances)


    • Think about whether or not your child is ready to start an instrument. Be aware of the time commitment for you, the parent as a “home teacher,” and practice time helper.
    • If you are not sure your child is quite ready and may not yet have the focus required to learn an instrument, you may wish to consider registering for Suzuki Pre-School Music class for ages 6 months – 3.5 years.
    • Attend one of our two Parent Information Evenings throughout the year, for new families: Tuesday September 10, 2019 at the MNjcc, 7:00 – 8:00 pm Tuesday February 18, 2020 at the MNjcc, 7:00 – 8:00 pm
    • Choose an instrument: violin, viola, cello. If you are not sure which instrument your child is interested in, you may find out in the observation process.
    • You must come observe with your child, at least 1 group lesson, and 2 private lessons. Observations help you and the teacher know whether your child is ready to start lessons. Observations also help parents begin to understand their role as a “home teacher.” For teachers’ private lesson schedules, and group lesson schedules, please contact: Gretchen Paxson-Abberger (Artistic Director, MNjcc Suzuki Program) email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone: 647-637-1530
    • Read Nurtured by Love by Shinichi Suzuki.
    • Start listening to the Volume I Suzuki CD of the pieces your child will be learning.

    Class Descriptions

    MNjcc Suzuki Program Teacher Bios – 2019 - 2020 Season

    Suzuki Program Calendar 2019-2020


    Fees and Registration Information  

    Payment is processed from a VISA or MasterCard, or debit from a cheque account. Group class payment is through the MNjcc, and is separate from the private lesson payment. To download a registration form, click here. Please do NOT email your registration form. Forms may be dropped off at our information desk or mailed to 750 Spadina Ave. ATTN: Suzuki, Toronto ON, M5S 2J2.

    Registration opens August 7 for MNjcc members and August 14 for patrons. 

    Violin Beginner to Book 8 - $795

    Sibling Discount – $750

    Cello Beginner to Book 6 - $795

    Sibling Discount – $750

    Chamber - $855

    Sibling Discount - $815

    Additional Enrichment Class - $495

    Sibling Discount - $450

    Registration Fee (per family) - $50

    Parent Association Fee - $25

    An annual fee used to subsidize special events, guest accompanists, workshop teachers, guest performing artists and coaches.

    Facility fee for private lessons at the MNjcc - $210

    CIF (capital improvement fund) 3% of total

    Late fee (after September 10, 2019) - $40

    Additional Fees (paid separately from registration): $25 materials fee for theory class books & private lessons taking place outside of the MNjcc.

    Financial Assistance
    Our mandate is to help make innovative and dynamic music programs accessible to all, regardless of financial status or circumstances. Our Equitable Access Program provides financial assistance towards our music programs and choirs. To apply please click here.


    End of the 27th season for the MNjcc Suzuki Program

    We finished up a successful 27th season on June 18 celebrating with 19 students who completed our 100 days of Music Challenge. This means they practiced or participated in music endeavours for 100 days in a row starting back in late January and/or February of this year. After this event, we segued into a spring graduation recital featuring 12 students who were prepared to graduate from Twinkle level through Book 3. Lastly, we held a special senior graduation recital on June 23rd that featured our 3 senior players who are off to University next season. We are all so incredibly proud of these students who have been working on their playing skills since age 5; Abigail Greenland – cello, Alexander Levesque - violin, Amy Luo – violin.



    Contact & Info

    750 Spadina Ave. (at Bloor), Toronto, Ontario M5S 2J2

    Phone: 416.924.6211
    Fax: 416.924.0422

    Charitable Registration Number:
    140344243 RR0001