Message from the founder


My name is Tobiah Murphy

I am a professional violinist, teacher, and founder of the Murphy Music Academy.

With grandparents as professional musicians, it wasn’t that hard to imagine myself becoming a musician as well. I was exposed to classical music at a very early age, and by 12 I knew I wanted to pursue violin professionally. All went swimmingly during my high school years. I played more and more challenging repertoire, won several competitions, and even performed solo with the Kansas City Symphony. Yet, upon arrival at music school, I ran into a developmental wall.

I attended the Cleveland Institute of Music, often cited as one of the top 5 music schools in the country. However, I found myself struggling. Things weren’t working like they did in high school. I wasn’t being given proper guidance on how to develop myself, and as I looked around, very few people were. People were developing bad habits, tension, and unnecessary anxieties. I would ask my teacher for help on a particular technique and he would brush it aside, saying “oh, you can just figure that out yourself.” I saw how so many of these students were not being prepared to take on life after conservatory. They had no idea how to take whatever they had learned and apply it to some kind of life and living for themselves outside of music school. They had no concept of the business acumen and networking necessary for successful musicians. And then I hit one moment that would change my perspective, and my life trajectory, forever.

I was in a practice room one day, having made a bet with another student as to who could stay practicing the longest. However, after only 45 minutes, I realized I didn’t know what to do to make my music better. I knew it wasn’t good enough, but I had no idea what steps to take next. I wondered how many others might be in the scenario, and I determined at this moment I was going to do whatever it took to thoroughly understand what a music student needs. I tore through every aspect of violin technique, sometimes practicing 7-8 hours everyday so I could have a thorough understanding of Why I was doing what I was doing, just so I could adequately teach it to someone else. I studied muscular anatomy, so I could understand the exact workings of the body while playing the violin. I studied psychology and neurology as well, so I could understand how people learn. It was that fateful moment in the practice room that gave me the drive and the passion to become not only a performer but a teacher, and to start my own school.

The genesis of this school is the Murphy Music Academy, the best in violin instruction you will find anywhere in the Southeast Michigan area.

If you want to learn violin, this is my promise to you: you will find no greater dedication, passion, and knowledge than you will find here at the Murphy Music Academy.

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