Beyond Eclectic Strings with Beth Fortune

Steve and Alan talk with Beth Fortune about all the alternatives to traditional music in the classroom and how to introduce other genres.

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Elizabeth Fortune has been the Director of Orchestras and Eclectic Strings at Seattle’s Washington Middle School since 2002 and is the Director of the award nominated educational programming at the Wintergrass Music Festival. Over her tenure, Fortune has been striving to bridge the gap between classical and roots music in the educational setting. She has built the strings program at Washington Middle School into a comprehensive four-tiered curriculum for string players of all levels, including two roots music ensembles. Her string ensembles regularly perform with noted guest artists and compete annually in regional and national classical and jazz festivals.

In 2018, Fortune was a recipient of the Country Music Association’s Music Teachers of Excellence distinction. In 2015, Fortune was one of 25 semi-finalists out of 7,000 nominations for the Grammy Music Educator Award. Fortune received her Bachelors and Masters of Music degrees with an emphasis on Music Education and violin performance from the University of Montana. She is an active contributor to the Washington Music Educators’ Association, the National Association for Music Education, The Jazz Education Network, The American String Teachers Association, and the International Bluegrass Music Association.