Zeynep started her professional experience teaching students K-12 and above through teaching fellowships at the Juilliard School and the Aspen Music Festival and School. Current teaching positions include: faculty on theNew York Philharmonic, violin faculty and conductor at the Youth Orchestra of St. Lukes, violin faculty at Point CounterPoint and music faculty at Lincoln Center's Audition Boot Camp.
Through her dedicated teaching, Zeynep is committed to instilling a solid technical foundation as well as guiding the development of her students' own unique musical voice and musicianship.
The key elements in my teaching philosophy are connection, flexibility, goal and system setting, patience, and providing a supportive community.
As a teacher, it is my responsibility to create an engaging, secure, and motivating learning environment where students will not only grow musically, but also intellectually, emotionally, and socially. My teaching philosophy is based on the notion that all students, no matter their background, can learn, grow, challenge themselves, and succeed. With this basis, it is essential to recognize that every student is unique and may have different needs. Not every student will respond, communicate, or react in the same manner. It is the teacher’s duty to recognize which teaching style works best with a student and to adapt with patience when needed.
Learning music conjointly teaches lessons in life. Nurturing not only the musician, but also the person, is critical for effective and impactful teaching. It is important as a teacher to not only make musical connections, but to also make personal connections that each student can relate to. With the proper scaffolding, creating a more familiar and accessible entry point allows students to have a clearer understanding of topics, increase their engagement, and ignite their intrinsic motivation for learning and developing.
My students are important to me and I take the utmost care in setting goals that will challenge, support, and highlight their strengths while improving their weaknesses. In pursuance of achieving goals, goal setting is only part of the equation. Teaching systems, tailored to each student, to be used outside of lessons and during independent practice is paramount. When setting goals and systems for my students, it is important for me as a teacher to challenge them to not be afraid of their weaknesses, but instead to embrace them and use them as learning experiences to advance and flourish. I give my students the necessary tools and guidance they need to confidently and independently problem solve and to express their own musical identities combined with artistic excellence. I encourage my students to think outside of the box and use the practice space as a place to practice mindfulness, experimentation, trial and error, independence, and to learn to overcome their obstacles in creative and efficacious ways.
Providing a supportive community for my students is essential. Through recitals, practice groups, studio classes, masterclasses, and workshops, a supportive community goes beyond music making by building social connection, positivity, a sense of belonging, meaningful relationships, and a growth in knowledge and educational experiences that can not always be found in a typical lesson. Having a supportive community influences students to do their best, and it creates a space for them to thrive in their individual musical endeavors.
I encourage my students to not only achieve musical excellence, but to also become independent thinkers, leaders, and team players. I strive to make my students’ experiences with music and learning filled with joy, curiosity, passion, and confidence.
- New York Philharmonic Teaching Artist (2019 - present)
- Violin Faculty and Ensemble Leader, Youth Orchestra of St. Luke's (2021 - present)
- Violin Faculty, Point CounterPoint (2021- present)
- Music Faculty, Audition Boot Camp at Lincoln Center (2019 - present)
- Chamber Music Coach, Community Chamber Music Program (Stony Brook University) (2019 - present)
- Violin Faculty (Elizabeth Faidley Studio) (2019 - present)
- Master Class and Workshop Series, Bilkent University (2019)
- Private Teacher and String Ensemble Coach at the Nord Anglia International School New York (2018 - present)
- Orchestra Mentor, Undergraduate Orchestra (Stony Brook University) (2019)
- Private Teacher for the Passes and Lessons Scholarship Program (P.A.L.S.) at the Aspen Music Festival and School (2015 - 2017)
- Turkish-American Cultural Laboratory Violin Faculty and Teaching Artist (2018 - present)
- Juilliard Morse Teaching Artist Fellow (partnering with City College Academy of the Arts and Thurgood Marshall Academy Lower School)
- Mentor for the Music Advancement Program at The Juilliard School (2017 - 2019)
Pedagogy Education at The Juilliard School:
- Insights Into Learning: Edward Bilous
- Arts in Education: Thomas Cabaniss
"A unique and special experience! My daughter always looked forward to her sessions with Zeynep. She has been her mentor for the past two summers at the PALS program. Once after a lesson my daughter told me that she was surprised how much better she played the song after her session with Zeynep. I love the way Zeynep engages with my daughter and brings out the best in her."
“The masterclass I had with Zeynep Alpan was a very beneficial and insightful experience. Ms. Alpan’s advice about practicing techniques gave me a different perspective on how I can effectively improve and enhance my practice.”
"My daughter had the pleasure of taking lessons with Zeynep this past summer in the PALS program in Aspen. She loved each week when it was lesson time. This is what Addison had to say, "She always would say the area I needed to work on nicely. I loved that she gave me knew things to learn at each lesson. If I didn't understand, she would keep encouraging me until I did." This was an excellent experience!"
"Zeynep was my teacher for the PALS summer program in Aspen. Her positive attitude made my weekly lesson enjoyable. My playing improved greatly during my summer with her. She helped me become a stronger player. Watching her perform in the orchestra was inspiring."
"At Zeynep Alpan’s master class, I learned how to look at my pieces from another point of view, different techniques to practice, and how to control my bow depending on the sound I want. At our Performance Practice Workshop, I learned how to get over my stage fright and how to stay concentrated. We had a mock audition, where I had to continue to play and stay focused while the ‘jury’ was trying to distract me and make me more nervous!”
"My 8 year old daughter participated in the Aspen Music Festival PALS program last summer and was paired up with Zeynep as a violin instructor. She was an amazing teacher and great with the kids. She is so sweet and incredibly talented. We were privileged to see her perform at the music festival and it was jaw dropping. I definitely recommend Zeynep to anyone looking for violin instruction."