Shelley Beard received her Bachelor’s Degree from Peabody Conservatory, where she studied with Victoria Chiang and her Master’s Degree from Indiana University School of Music, where she studied with Atar Arad. She is also a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, where she studied with David Holland. Additionally, Ms. Beard studied with Heidi Castleman at Aspen Music Festival. Currently, Ms. Beard is the Program Director and a faculty member at Settlement Music School in Philadelphia, one of the nation’s oldest, largest, and most prestigious pre-collegiate schools of music.
As an active performer, Ms. Beard was a former and founding member of both the Tononi Quartet and the prize-winning Muhlenberg Piano Quartet performing at numerous national venues including The Curtis Institute of Music, The Juilliard School, Peabody Conservatory, Westminster Choir College, the Samuel Barber International Chamber Music Festival, Rampo College, etc.
Ms. Beard has extensive pedagogical training including a minor in Violin Pedagogy (focusing on Galamian, Rolland, Suzuki, and Gingold) from IU with Mimi Zweig; over 15 units of Suzuki training registered with the Suzuki Association of the America’s; and participation at the 2019 Dorothy Delay Symposium at The Juilliard School.
Ms. Beard has been honored to receive numerous teaching awards including the 2016 American Viola Society’s Maurice Riley Award; the 2018 Philadelphia Youth Orchestra’s Ovation Award; and the Suzuki Association’s Certificate of Achievement in 2009. Ms. Beard has served on the board of the Greater Philadelphia Suzuki Association and the Philadelphia Viola Society.
During the span of her more than 20-year career, Ms. Beard has founded and developed multiple successful precollege string programs and camps and has also taught at the collegiate level. Her students have gone to win top prizes in many national and international competitions including several sponsored by the American String Teacher’s Association and have been accepted to numerous musical organizations including The Juilliard School, Cleveland Institute of Music, Oberlin Conservatory, Peabody Conservatory, National Youth Orchestra, Perlman Music Program, etc.
Ms. Beard is also an active performer of electric and crossover genres, a sought after recording artist, and is featured on the original folk rock album “Pieces Of You And Me”. She actively seeks out opportunities to give her students multicultural musical experiences.
Shelley resides in Lansdowne with her husband Jim, her daughter Violet, and their four cats.
Education: Bachelor's Degree from Peabody Conservatory, Master's Degree from Indiana University, Interlochen Arts Academy
Specialties: Violin, Viola