Nicole McKenzie

Certified Private Instructor

As both concert violinist and teacher, Nicole McKenzie enjoys a career as soloist, chamber musician, and teacher of violin and viola. Her experience includes working with high school and middle school students in private lessons, coaching chamber music, orchestra sectionals, and music theory instruction. She holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory and the Florida State University. Ms. McKenzie concertizes regularly, including a recent series of concerts with pianist Betty Oberacker, and as concertmaster of the highly acclaimed Santa Barbara Folk Orchestra. She is a chamber music coach at Santa Barbara Strings, and is an evaluator of students in the Music Teacher Association of California’s Certificate of Merit program.


As a violinist, I believe that performers must convey not only the virtuosic, but also the artistic and emotional warmth inherent in the music. As a teacher, I emphasize the importance of utilizing technique for the purpose of communication, whether dealing with students of modest attainment, or with very advanced talents. To this end, I give my students precise instruction in practice techniques and what to expect at every stage of their growth: They thus learn to work with confidence, to monitor their own progress, and ultimately to feel comfortable with the art of performing.

Professional Affiliations

Music Teacher's Helper