Emily Connolly began violin at the age of four at the Western Springs School of Talent Education, and ever since then has been drawn to all aspects of the violin. After years of going on tours with Allegro Performing Ensemble, The Chicago Consort, and the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra as Assistant Concertmaster, she decided to fully pursue her passion in music. She went to the University of Michigan for a degree in Violin Performance, where she studied with Gabriel Bolkosky, Andrew Jennings, and Yehonatan Berick in her four years there. She became Concertmaster of the University Philharmonic Orchestra, and Concertmaster for the University Musical Society Orchestra. She has played in violin masterclasses with David Kim, David Halen, Kathleen Winkler, and Paul Kantor, and in one masterclass performing a piece for violin and voice for world famous vocalist, Renee Fleming. She also was involved in the Chamber Program at U of M, coached by Richard Aaron and Anthony Elliot. While in school, she also played with the Detroit Symphony, Kalamazoo Symphony, and the Dearborn Symphony Orchestras. She expanded her horizons by playing with Jazz ensembles and projects, Contemporary Music Ensemble, Baroque Orchestra, and multiple world culture music events.
Although her performing life was very rich, she decided to go back to her roots of Suzuki, and realized that is where her heart was. After graduating in 2014 with Honors, she took the summer to take Suzuki Teacher Trainings for books 1 through 5 with Edward Kreitman over the span of 3 months. Since then, she has taken Suzuki workshops with Helen Brunner, Allen Lieb, and Cathy Lee to further her education.
In January of 2015, she moved to Austin, Texas to pursue her love for teaching. She became the head violin teacher at two music studios where she implemented an entire Suzuki program including workshops, masterclasses for both teachers and students, and her own violin/viola summer camp. She also taught private violin lessons in four different public schools, and became an Orchestra teacher at Tippit Middle School for an intermediate orchestra and beginning orchestra class, where she taught the Suzuki Method as well. She performed with the Round Rock Symphony, Temple Symphony, Golden Age Orchestra, River Pointe Church Band, and more.
Emily decided to pursue her Suzuki and Violin Performance education, and got her Masters Degree at the Cleveland Institute of Music in both Violin Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy. She studied with Joan Kwuon, world renowned soloist, and completed long term Suzuki Training with Kimberly Meier-Sims, completing Volumes 1-10. While at CIM, Emily was a Suzuki Teacher at the Sato Center for Suzuki Studies for both Private and Group lessons, and a Suzuki Theory Teacher. She worked in the Preparatory Division Office, and as Kimberly Meier-Sims’ Pedagogy Assistant. She also was a Suzuki teacher at the Baldwin Wallace Suzuki Program in Berea, OH.
After graduation, Emily moved back to Chicago, to where it all began; at the Western Springs School of Talent Education. Her life has come full circle now being an Instructor at the school she first started violin at age 4. She is so excited to be a part of the Violin School that has been her inspiration for her whole life.
In her free time, she is a dedicated Yogi, and active fitness enthusiast. She loves exploring nature and being outside with her husband, Patrick Connolly, and their dog, Parker.