susan happy conducting

Susan Pascale is the music director and founder of Pascale Music Institute (PMI).

Pascale founded PMI 15 years ago in response to the lack of music education in the public schools and her area. “I believe in the power of music for all children”.

Fifteen years ago, Susan began developing what would become the Pascale Method® to teach young children to play an instrument, including the violin and piano. Through trial and error she developed a system that launches children in music successfully.

She has codified her system into two books, supported by an instructional DVD, which people around the world are now using.

At the PMI’s Los Angeles campus, students learn to play stringed instruments and piano at a high level. Piano is a prerequisite for youngsters who want to learn a stringed instrument. There are private and group classes, summer courses, practice bootcamps, and three orchestras. Children as young as 3 ½ can enroll in KinderPiano®  class, and must be at least 4 ½ for KinderViolin® class.

Orchestra is at the heart of PMI, driven by Pascale’s passion for creating high-level programs for young students. The Los Angeles Children’s Chamber Orchestra, the Los Angeles Children’s Chamber Orchestra, and numerous chamber groups have been recognized with many awards at regional and national competitions, including Carnegie Hall.

Pascale is a recipient of the American String Teacher’s Association (ASTA) 2015 P.J. McMasters Award for Excellence in School and Orchestra Teaching for Southern California.

Susan launched PMI in 2001 after a move from Long Island, New York to South Pasadena, a suburb of Los Angeles, California. She attempted to enroll her daughter in the local elementary school’s music program. Pascale was astonished to discover that, like so many budget-strapped California schools, there was no orchestra program.

susan happy conducting

In a panic, she ran around the schoolyard talking to other parents who wanted their young children to receive a music education. She volunteered to teach a free beginning violin class. Twenty-five students signed up and, by holiday season, the group played its first concert. This marked the start of the Los Angeles Children’s Orchestra, PMI, and the Pascale Method.

Susan writes articles on the subject of music education for children. She is a regular presenter and writer for the National Association for Music Merchants (NAMM), and teaches seminars and workshops to music educators and parents.