Violinist Stephen Sims is an instructor at the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Sato Center for Suzuki Studies, as well as an Adjunct/Secondary instructor at the conservatory. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in performance and pedagogy from the University of Iowa, where he won the Pelzer Fellowship Award in performance; a Master’s Degree in performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he was awarded the Jerome Gross Memorial Prize in violin and the Alumni Association Valedictory Prize; and a Bachelor’s Degree in performance from the University of Illinois, graduating with high honors. His principal teachers include Leopold LaFosse, Linda Cerone, David Russell, Catherine Tait, Sergiu Luca and Barbara Jackson. While working on his Master’s Degree, he was enrolled in CIM’s first Suzuki Pedagogy course. He has been a registered Suzuki teacher for over 25 years and is a frequent clinician at Suzuki workshops and institutes around the country. His students have won numerous concerto competitions, served as concertmasters and section principals for All-State and national youth orchestras, and continued on to successful careers in music. In 2000, the Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts recognized him as one of Tennessee’s outstanding educators.
An orchestral musician for many years, Sims served as Assistant Principal Violin of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra from 1998-2002, Concertmaster of the Cedar Rapids Symphony Orchestra from 1988-94 and Assistant Concertmaster of the North Arkansas Symphony Orchestra while in his junior year of high school. He has performed as soloist with the Cedar Rapids Symphony Orchestra, the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, the Bethany College/Lindsborg Community Orchestra, the Emporia State University Orchestra, the Delta Symphony Orchestra and the Minnesota State University Orchestra. He has performed recitals throughout the United States and in Ireland.
In addition to his duties at CIM, Sims also taught at Denison University from 2005-2012, and at El Sistema @ University Circle during 2013-14. Prior to his appointment to the CIM Faculty in 2004, Sims held teaching positions at the University of Memphis Community Music School, the Preucil School of Music in Iowa City and the Cedar Rapids Symphony School of Music.
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