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String Program, Southwestern Elementary

Ian Jesse String Instructor

Ian Jesse
String Instructor

Ian Jesse
String Instructor

Open to students of
Southwestern Elementary School
Gallia County, Ohio
No charge

Please contact your school administrator for enrollment information.

The Ohio Valley Symphony is pleased to offer String Classes to any interested student who attends Southwestern Elementary School, at no charge to the student.

In addition to music instruction, students will learn self-discipline, group cooperation, problem solving, goal setting, self-expression, memory skills, concentration, poise, enhanced physical coordination, self-esteem, and the importance of teamwork — skills in great demand in almost every aspect of life.

Like all the arts, music has a profound effect on the academic success of students as well. Music instruction affects math and reading scores with string students having higher scores on standardized tests and they also have significantly higher GPAs.

The string instruction program is funded through The Ohio Valley Symphony’s Endowment, set up by Ann Carson Dater.

“Mrs. Dater feels that the world would be a better place if more people listened to classical symphonic music,” said Lora Lynn Snow, the symphony’s Executive Director and a former teacher at Southwestern Elementary School.  She continued that “Mrs. Dater took violin lessons herself as a child” and was very excited when the string classes were first offered to the elementary students.

String students are offered free admission to The Ohio Valley Symphony concerts when they are accompanied by a parent or guardian.  “My teaching experience at Southwestern was very instrumental in my founding the orchestra,” said Ms. Snow. “I saw how hungry the students were for quality music and I felt there was a real need for a professional orchestra in our area so students would have a high level to aspire to.”

Ian Jesse, an Ohio native, came to West Virginia to participate in the West Virginia Symphony Artist-in Residence program as a string instructor for the Kanawha County Schools. He earned a bachelor’s degree in violin performance from The Ohio State University. Mr. Jesse performs with the West Virginia Symphony, The Ohio Valley Symphony, and is concertmaster of the River Cities Symphony Orchestra. He spends summers in Austria as a violinist in the Classical Music Festival, playing in the Kismarton Quartet. He has participated in the New Hampshire Music Festival, and the Bach and Beyond Baroque Music Festival (Fredonia, NY). In 2007 and 2008, Mr. Jessee served on the faculty of the International Music Festival Akademi Datça in Turkey.

As an educator, Mr. Jessee’s public school programs have consistently received superior ratings and highest honors in regional and state competitions, and in 2011 placed 1st in the prestigious National Orchestra Festival, part of the American String Teachers Association Conference. He served from 2006-2008 as president of the West Virginia Chapter of ASTA, and currently serves as state chapter president of National Federation of Music Clubs (NFMC) organizing competitions and festivals, and is serving as District Co-Chairman of Music Teachers National Association (MTNA). He is also a member of the Music Educators National Conference, the Ohio Music Education Association, the Conductors’ Guild, and the West Virginia Music Teachers’ Association.

For more information about the symphony please visit

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