Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Creative Arts


School of Music

Committee Chair

Lynn Hileman

Committee Co-Chair

Andrea Priester Houde

Committee Member

Andrew Kohn

Committee Member

Evan A. MacCarthy

Committee Member

Sergio Robles Puente


This research document explores teaching methods, career advice, and major influences that shaped the professional course of the violist Lynne Ramsey. Ramsey teaches viola at the Cleveland Institute of Music and is first assistant principal viola in the Cleveland Orchestra. For over thirty years, she has taught countless viola students in the US while maintaining a full-time performance career.

The introductory chapter covers Ramsey’s biographical and educational backgrounds during her time as a student of Ramon Scavelli, David Dawson, and Karen Tuttle. It is worth mentioning that Tuttle was the primary student of one of the best-known violists in history, William Primrose. Tuttle taught Ramsey Tuttle’s own interpretations of Primrose’s knowledge, and consequently, Ramsey developed her own interpretations of Tuttle’s knowledge. This document portrays these connections in relation to Ramsey’s teaching style and expertise as a viola performer and informs my conclusions in the section dedicated to career advice. The second chapter is dedicated to Ramsey’s career as a viola player and includes information about her personal preparation for orchestral auditions. The third chapter summarizes Ramsey’s teaching philosophy and teaching techniques. Finally, the fourth chapter contains Ramsey’s career advice for upcoming professional violists and viola teachers, including topics such as the misconception of talent and career paths.