Birch Bay String Teachers' Workshop
  • July 29 - August 2, 2019

    The W-ASTA Birch Bay String Teachers’ Workshop is presented annually in Ferndale, Washington: a pleasant small town located fifteen minutes north of Bellingham, fifteen minutes from the beach at Birch Bay, and fifteen minutes from the Canadian border. The workshop is of interest to private studio and public school string teachers at all levels, and to college/university students preparing for a music education career. Each year, participants from all over the country and from foreign nations attend.

    For further information you may call workshop director Chip Schooler at 360-280-2556
    or email him at:
    We hope to see you here!

    Click here to join the Facebook group page

  • 2018 Guest Clinician
    Dr. Rebecca MacLeod

    Associate Professor of Music Education
    University of North Carolina, Greensboro

    DR. REBECCA MACLEOD, featured guest clinician, is Associate Professor of Music Education at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro where she is director of the string education program and conducts the UNCG Sinfonia. Prior to joining the UNCG faculty, she was the assistant artistic director and conductor of the Tallahassee Symphony Youth Chamber Orchestra and Philharmonia Orchestra. A native of Pennsylvania, she taught elementary, middle, and high school orchestra in Hollidaysburg, PA and was orchestra director and music activities chairman in Beaver, PA. Dr. MacLeod is published in numerous national music education journals and serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Research in Music Education. She has served on the ASTA National Board and is past president of the North Carolina ASTA chapter. Her research on working with underserved populations, vibrato technique, music teacher education, and music perception has been presented at the International Conference of Music Perception and Cognition, NAfME National Conference, ASTA National Conference, Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, and Society for Music Teacher Education.

    (2109 Guest Clinician will be announced soon!)
  • Resident Faculty

    RUTH BODEN, Cello Technique and Pedagogy
    Associate Professor Washington State University
    CHRIS BURNS, Bass Technique and Pedagogy
    Symphony Tacoma principal, University Place School District
    JOE DYVIG, Bass Technique and Pedagogy
    Olympia School District, Symphony Tacoma
    LISA DYVIG, Viola Technique and Pedagogy
    Olympia Symphony principal, Symphony Tacoma, Private studio in Olympia, WA
    HUW EDWARDS, Conducting Master Class
    Olympia Symphony Orchestra Music Director & Conductor
    IAN EDLUND, Reading Orchestras
    ASTA Elizabeth Green national teaching award, Director Emeritus Birch Bay Workshop
    STUART HAKE, Cello Technique and Pedagogy
    Tacoma Opera principal, Annie Wright School
    LESLIE JOHNSON, Viola Technique and Pedagogy
    Former principal PNW Ballet Orchestra, Private studio in Issaquah, WA
    LAURA LYNN, Violin Technique and Pedagogy
    Former Tacoma Symphony, Tacoma and North Thurston School Districts
    SVEND RONNING, Violin Technique and Pedagogy
    Professor Pacific Lutheran University, Symphony Tacoma concertmaster
    CHIP SCHOOLER, Director and Reading Orchestras
    South Puget Sound Community College

    reading orchestra librarian & equipment
    registrar & site manager
  • Conducting Masterclass

    The conducting masterclass provides an opportunity for participants to receive gentle, supportive coaching by our guest clinician, Huw Edwards. Those wishing to take advantage of this opportunity will be assigned one movement of a standard string orchestra piece, and will be given 30 minutes of podium time with a small orchestra of their peers. To be considered for a conducting slot, please contact Chip Schooler and mark the registration form accordingly. Up to eight slots are available on a "first come - first served" basis.

    Huw Edwards

    Olympia Symphony Orchestra Music Director and Conductor
    formerly with Portland Youth Philharmonic
    & Seattle Youth Symphony

    Mr. Edwards has served as Music Director & Conductor of the Olympia Symphony Orchestra since 2003. He has also been the Music Director of the Portland Columbia Symphony in Oregon (2000-2012), the Portland Youth Philharmonic (1995-2002), as well as the Seattle Youth Symphony and Marrowstone Music Festival (2002-2005). Huw is active as a guest conductor, is in demand as a clinician and adjudicator, and has directed several all-state orchestras. His conducting studies were at Southern Methodist University and Northwestern University.

  • Accommodations

    Participants are responsible for their own lodging. A variety of accommodations are available in the Ferndale/Birch Bay/Bellingham area.

    The following three motels offer a special rate to guests reserving prior to July 10 when identifying themselves as Birch Bay String Teachers’ Workshop participants (please call for this rate):

    - Super 8 Motel, Ferndale: 360-384-8881 (website link)
    - Holiday Inn & Suites: 360-746-6844 (website link)
    - Home2 Suites by Hilton: 360-734-3111> (website link)
    - Hotel Bellingham Airport: 360-676-7700 (website link)

    Condominium rentals near Birch Bay include:
    - Jacob’s Landing (condos): 360-371-5941 (website link)
    - Sandcastle at Birch Bay: 360-371-4900 (website link)

    - Campsites in nearby Birch Bay State Park, some with trailer hookups, may be reserved at the Washington State Parks website. (website link)
    - RV sites located near Ferndale may be reserved by calling the Cedars RV Park at 360-384-2622. (website link)

    Early reservations for campsites and RV sites are advised.

  • Registration, Fees, Credits, Location

    Pre-register for the workshop by completing the registration form (which will be mailed out and a copy posted here at this website in early 2019). Send it with your check or credit card information as directed. You may also register on site for an additional fee, provided space is available. Registration includes all materials, refreshments, and salmon dinner Thursday night on the beach.

    Prior to July 9: $270 for non-ASTA members, $240 for ASTA members.
    After July 9: $300 for non-ASTA members, $270 for ASTA members.

    ASTA MEMBERS: Members of Washington ASTA may attend any two consecutive days of the workshop for a special fee of $160.

    COLLEGE CREDIT & CLOCK HOURS: Central Washington University offers 3 quarter credits for a very nominal fee which may be paid onsite. Thirty clock hours are available at no charge for WMEA members only. Clock hour arrangements may be made onsite.

    LOCATION: Ferndale High School: 5830 Golden Eagle Drive - Ferndale, WA 98248
    click here for link to Google Maps

    CANCELLATION POLICY: $150 of the workshop fee will be refunded if cancellation request is received prior to July 9, 2018. No refunds will be allowed after July 9.

    QUESTIONS: For further information you may call workshop director Chip Schooler at 360-280-2556 or e-mail

    Payment for registration and/or credits may be made by cash, check, or credit card. NO PURCHASE ORDERS WILL BE ACCEPTED.

  • Sponsors

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JULY 29 - AUGUST 2, 2019 - Ferndale, Washington