Sheila started playing violin/fiddle in at the age of 8 and holds a degree in viola performance from Northwestern University. She has taught viola and violin at Augustana College and the University of Sioux Falls, in addition to maintaining a private teaching studio. She has been a member of the Heidelberg (Germany) Chamber Orchestra, the Sioux City Symphony, and the South Dakota Symphony.
Sheila entered her first fiddle contest in 1975. She is a past 1st place winner of the National Old time Country & Bluegrass Music Festival in LeMars, Iowa and Spudfest in Minnesota. In addition, she has placed in numerous fiddle contests and talent shows in Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, Missouri and Minnesota, including the Iowa State Fair and the Minnesota State Fair. She has been arranging fiddle tunes since 1987 and is the author of Serious Fiddling: Fiddle Tunes for Violin published by SimplyViolin.
Sheila is a member of the Violin Society of America, the American Viola Society, and the Minnesota Viola Society, as well as the Minnesota State Fiddlers Association and Minnesota Old Time Fiddlers Association. She has a background in violin repair and owned her own shop G&G Violins in Sioux City, Iowa. Sheila has also worked for Kenneth Stein Violins in Chicago, Sioux Falls Music, and Claire Givens Violins. Currently, she is Sales Manager at House of Note in Minneapolis, where she specializes in selling and appraising instruments and bows in the violin family.
Sheila has been a guest lecturer for the Suzuki Association of the Americas national conventions. She would like to dedicate her arrangements to the memory of her mother, Marilyn Graves, and beloved teacher John Grossman who was a master at teaching, arranging music, and making all styles of music fun!
Read Sheila's blog, full of valuable information from the violin dealer's perspective.