STRING PLAYERS AND TEACHERS
Take your music, teaching, and career to the next level with my personal support, clear structure, and accountability through 7-weeks of multifaceted learning with a diverse community of musicians from around the world.
CREATIVE STRINGS WORKSHOP ONLINE Nov 1 - Dec 20
Where it all began…
When I was 16, a kid named Noah Phipps sat last chair second violin in our high school orchestra; Noah brought tapes to school of original songs he made on a 4-track recorder.
Kids used to hover around him, unimpressed with my Paganini caprices.
I remember thinking, “I’m just not a creative person like him”.
That thought crushed me- not only because of what it said about my musicianship, but what it said about me. I felt uninteresting.
Then I thought, “What if I could learn to be a Creative Musician”? I decided to try to invalidate my limiting self beliefs.
I joined rock bands. Despite having had little training, my band mates were more functional and creative musicians. They were comfortable with harmony, groove, improvisation, songwriting…
I eventually joined more bands, playing blues, jazz, folk, gospel, pop, Latin, and more…
I started gaining musical understanding and found my original voice.
Then I developed methods to help other classical musicians gain musical understanding and be more creatively expressed.
Hey, I’m Christian Howes.
I’m the founder of “Creative Strings“, an organization with a mission to expand music education through the creation of online curriculum, an annual summer conference, and dozens of visits to schools annually teaching improvisation, contemporary styles, and related subjects. I was voted #1 in the Downbeat Critics Poll (“Rising Stars/Violin”), named among the top three jazz violinists in the JazzTimes critics poll, and nominated for Violinist of the Year by the Jazz Journalist Association. More importantly, I’ve helped hundreds/thousands of musicians just like you develop the confidence and ability to…
- Become more Functional, Creative, versatile musicians
- Teach in a way that is more relevant to students’ current needs
- Build careers that are more profitable without sacrificing integrity
When you gain the understanding of a functional musician, and lean into your creativity, it changes how you feel about music, and about yourself.
By and large, you’ll be able to:
-Connect with a wider range of musicians
-Share your music and teaching with confidence
-Develop deeper relationships with your audience and/or students
-Attract more professional opportunities
In short, you’ll be ready to thrive in this new world as a musician and/or teacher, on your own terms.
Facing my fears and joining that band 35 years ago put me in a position to keep innovating:
- First call improvising violinist in NYC from 2000-2010
- Associate Professor at Berklee College of Music from 2008
- an online teaching pioneer since 2009
- an entrepreneur, recording and composing for hundreds of films and commercials, releasing 15 of my own albums, touring the world with musical heroes, publishing courses, literature, and sheet music, coaching hundreds of musicians in career development, producing festivals and workshops, founding a successful non-profit.. .
– Building this cutting-edge online learning experience in 2020
In short, my growth as a musician, teacher, and entrepreneur, was built on taking action, leaning into my creativity, trying new things, and putting in the work.
That’s why I’ve designed this 7-week bootcamp. Because I believe if you take action, with my support, whether in your Music, Teaching, or Career Development, you’ll be positioned to lead and keep leading
Does This Sound Like You?
- Wondering if you’ll ever learn to improvise, or play other styles of music, or find your own creative voice before you retire?
- Feel like you’re just so tired of the same gigs, same music, same limitations
- Does it seem like no one ever wants to pay what you’re worth?
- If you teach, is online teaching completely overwhelming?
Our project-based learning approach allows you to develop new skills while creating works you can reflect on, share, and be proud of. I’ll help you choose your starting project(s), goals, and learning path in week one.
Our personalized online format makes it easy to focus on what you want to learn by providing:
- A multi-week curriculum and masterclasses tailored to your needs
- Guidance and accountability so you complete your independent creative projects and reach clear goals in your teaching, musical skills, or business.
- For teachers who choose to license curriculum, I’ll help you craft assignments and lesson plans for your students.
Building a Strong Foundation
(Three reasons why a strong foundation is important. )Use these foundational units to begin expanding your or your students’ musical skills:
Three Foundational Units
1. EASY TONAL IMPROVISATION
Learn to compose, arrange, and improvise over foundational tonal chord progressions using Pachelbel’s Canon as an example. Apply the skills to your own projects, like arranging your own covers with multiple parts and more.
- 10 play-along videos with Chris and a young student demoing exercises
- 3 play-a-long video masterclasses with Chris
- 3 play-a-long videos with Chris and a high school orchestra (90 minutes)
- A printable workbook so you can work away from your computer or instrument.
- Backing tracks in multiple styles
- Chord Stacks – My original visual diagrams which will help you to always choose the “right notes” from minute one. Especially if you’re classically trained, this will change the way you see harmony, forever.
2. FREE IMPROVISATION
Start creating your own music immediately-no theory necessary. Includes:
- 11-part play-along series requiring no previous experience
- 5-part play-along series requiring no previous experience
- A list of 100 ideas for free improvisations
- And more…
Many members record 5-20 improvisations every day using this module alone. After spending ten minutes with this module, you will be improvising freely, creatively. Guaranteed.
3. PLAY-ALONG VIDEOS BY STYLE
Record composed or improvised performances to backing tracks in various styles. These are great “mini projects” for you or your students.
Creative Strings Bootcamp
Creative Strings is a 7-week bootcamp for musicians who want to… but don’t have… and need… Fill this part in
During this 7-week bootcamp we’ve had musicians and teachers from all over the world take their personal playing, careers, and teaching to new heights.
Hear what my students are saying:
The workshop offered videos, feedback and mentors that responded to all my goals (accompaniment, techniques, soloing w harmonic knowledge, connecting my voice with my viola). Also there was an opportunity to connect & watch other attendees on their journeys.
The 7-Week Bootcamp
STARTING OUT. . .
Whether you’re a student, amateur, pro player or teacher, the moment you join, you’ll get…
- A private lesson to clarify your goals and action plan.
- A workbook to track progress & stay accountable.
- Access to our private Facebook group with step by step learning units created by me and the mentors
- Access to twice-weekly group classes on Zoom ( Each class is 90 minutes minimum, with replays available)
INCLUDES. . .
- Extensive, comprehensive curriculum from me and other mentors
- Twice-Weekly play-a-long group classes (90 minutes each minimum)
- Anytime personal support through feedback on all your practice recordings, compositions, arrangements, lesson plans, and more.
- Private lessons, exclusive community, & much more…
Here are examples of the types of projects you or your students might make:
Fiddle Funk Low-Down Looping
"Georgia on My Mind" for String Ensemble
Improvisation for Unaccompanied Violin
You’ll also get…
Unlimited Personal Feedback on Your Progress
Post your work to get feedback from me and the mentors in your own personal thread.
first violinist, Christchurch Symphony Orchestra
Post from small to big projects, finished to unfinished, whenever is convenient for you.
Attend fast-paced, content-packed classes twice every week. Replays available.
- Scheduled in advance by topics
- Curriculum taught live so you actually get it done.
- Opportunities to perform and receive my feedback in front of the group.
Grammy Award Winning VIolinist
Review- Everything You Get with Full Access:
- The ability to focus on your goals in a project-based curriculum
- Individualized, timely support via private online forum from me and our world-class mentors
- Weekly Interactive Group Calls to connect with community and make sure you get it done
- Access to premium content (the same content available at my live camps and in my online Creative Strings Academy)
- Materials to share with your students in school-friendly formats (teacher Licensing access plans only)
- Two private lessons or consultations
- My extensive Premium Email Course
Meet Your Support Team
You’ll Get Diverse Perspectives from World-class Coaches
I want you to get second and third opinions too. That’s why I’ve asked these mentors to be available to support you as well.
Sign up for our November 1st- December 20th Bootcamp Today:
PRICES BELOW ARE EARLY-BIRD PRICES, GOOD THROUGH OCTOBER 1ST. BUY NOW TO SAVE
EARLY BIRD PRICING ends 11:59 PM EST on October 4 Prices will increase October 5
Live classes will take place Thursdays at 1 pm EST and Saturdays at 7:30 pm EST. This schedule was chosen to accommodate people in different time zones. Attendance at both sessions each week is NOT required to get a complete experience (although welcome).
(Premium Access including Lessons for Teacher PLUS permission to share materials with your students):
What’s this Worth?
This can best be compared to a semester at a conservatory, where the most affordable programs are priced at a few thousand dollars
Higher end schools like Berklee, where I used to teach, cost tens of thousands.
Consider for yourself if other options really offer you:
- this level of cutting edge curriculum.
- real time personalized feedback.
- the challenge and value of personalized projects.
- a diverse community of truly committed students
- a full seven weeks for even close to this price.
Violinist from Castlemaine, Victoria
I'm super happy with all of the information and resources. The workshop gave me a lot of information that I can work on for years
A Teacher that Understands
Thanks Christian Howes for providing this amazing platform. I'm so happy and relieved to have found a teacher that understands the frustrations of coming from a rigid classical background, and more importantly one who knows a way out into a wider world!!
Opened my mind
This workshop opened my mind further to what’s possible.
This workshop has been great! I’m learning a lot, and I feel really motivated to work on the topics.
See What Our Spring and Summer Participants Had to Say
Develop Your Creative Portfolio
If you are focused on growing your career as a player or teacher, you’ll be able to use your projects to promote your offerings and get more of the gigs/students you want. Part of the reason to invest in developing your creative works is so you and others can celebrate it.
click here to sign-up now
Give Awesome Projects to Your Students
Teachers who choose our Licensing plans have the ability to share course materials directly with students and get them working on projects of their own, either solo or in groups. These courses would otherwise normally cost thousands for your district. click here to sign-up now
Music Director at Darien Public Schools