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Anastasia Yarbrough


Teaches Violin, Viola, Cello

Interested in taking lessons with Anastasia Yarbrough

Teaches at:
Levels Taught

Beginner, Advanced, Intermediate, All

Favorite Instruments

Viola, Bass, Singing!

Musical Interests

Contemporary Jazz, Classical Music, 20th Century Classical, Experimental/Avant-Garde, Experimental Music, Neo Soul, Rhythm and Blues, Classic Gospel, Classic Rock, Bollywood, Afro-Brazilian styles, Tango, Film Scores, Hip Hop

Areas of Instruction

Violin, Viola, Cello

Favorite Bands

John Coltrane, Esperanza Spalding, Earth Wind and Fire, Curtis Mayfield, Erykah Badu, Solange Knowles, Lupe Fiasco, Outkast, Johannes Brahms, Paul Hindemith, Stevie Wonder, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Olivier Messiaen, Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley, Robert Glasper, Lalah Hathaway, Jill Scott, Liz Wright, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Sam Cooke, Mahalia Jackson, Etta James, Gladys Knight, Sly and The Family Stone, Baden Powell, The Lord of the Rings score (Howard Shore), Henrique Eisenmann, The Beatles, Fiona Apple, Kim Kashkashian, Yuri Lee, Nokuthula Ngwenyama, MGMT


B.M. Viola Peformance UNC School of the Arts, B.S. Natural Resources University of Vermont

Current Projects

EcoMusic and Improvisation, Island of Misfit Instruments, Original Jazz and African American Folk Fusion

Specialties / Genres Taught

Classical, Jazz, Improvisation

Performance Experience

I have performed in classical settings for over 20 years. These include orchestras, chamber ensembles, operas, musicals, church music, film scores, and studio sessions. I have performed in jazz settings for about 5 years that involve mostly chamber jazz with a few select big band collaborations. As a violist, I also play Funk, R&B, and Progressive Rock as an extension of my improvisation work. In Island of Misfit Instruments, I perform with a looping system.

Teaching Experience

Carolina Day School, Asheville Music School, Girls Rock Asheville, UNCSA Community Music School, LEAF Schools & Streets, Memphis Literacy Corps, Environmental Education at T.O. Fuller State Park

About Anastasia Yarbrough

Anastasia “An Ya” Yarbrough is a violist, singer-songwriter, and music educator based in Asheville, NC. The Memphis-native is emerging as an active contribution to the Western North Carolina jazz and R&B scene, as one of the few improvising violists-singers. At age seventeen, she was awarded a grant from the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. Anastasia is a graduate of the University of Vermont and UNC School of the Arts, where she studied viola with Sheila Browne and Lila Brown. While studying viola, Anastasia attended the Stanford Jazz Workshop and performed at the 2015 Stanford Jazz Festival. She also participated in the Master Players Festival and several Karen Tuttle Coordination workshops.

As a chamber musician, Anastasia has performed at such venues as the Lincoln Center, the Stevens Center for Performing Arts, and New York Live Arts. In 2017, she was the feature musician for the Asheville Storytelling GrandSlam as part of The Moth Radio Hour. She performs throughout the Western NC region as a singer, guest artist, and bandleader, including regular performances with Michael Jefry Stevens’ Mountain Chamber Jazz Ensemble and Asheville Jazz Orchestra. In the classical realm, Anastasia performs regularly with Pan Harmonia, Asheville Lyric Opera, and with symphonies such as Asheville, Hendersonville, Brevard, and Western Piedmont. She also teaches music and performance at Carolina Day School.

An Ya describes her teaching philosophy: “I take a body-oriented approach to teaching music. First and foremost, I begin with what interests and excites the student. I listen to the student sing, play, or improvise. From there, we decide repertoire and lesson goals based on what the student wants out of our time together.

“The repertoire we choose depends in large part on the student’s interests and their level. As a voice teacher, I specialize in jazz, R&B, gospel, and other styles of African American music. As a viola and violin teacher, I pull repertoire from virtually any style or genre.

“My education philosophy is influenced by music and environmental educators such as Sheila Browne, Karen Tuttle, Victor Wooten, David Abrams, and Leesa Fawcett. I apply concepts from Karen Tuttle Coordination to help students  tune into their bodies’ natural feedback in order to learn technique and solve problems. I treat music as a language subject to ritual in order to one, facilitate quicker learning and confidence with music, and two, reinforce helpful practice habits. In all of my lessons, I emphasize ear training, listening, singing (regardless of instrument), and body awareness.

“Most importantly, I want students to have fun and to associate practice and problem-solving with fun.”

Asheville Music & Arts 828-299-3000 ASHEVILLE NC