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IVAR HILLESLAND

Licensed Music Together Center Director

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I was blessed to grow up as the youngest child in a large musical family of seven. We sang together, played together, practiced together and were drawn together through our shared passion for music. Making music with others was part of my childhood and important to my development. Children are born with an incredibly natural musical aptitude that needs nurturing from an early age, but in today’s society, music is increasingly reduced to something we receive instead of something we actively create. For the first time in…well pretty much forever, most people are no longer making music in community. Instead, people are taught by today’s culture that they either are or are not “talented” enough to make music. I believe music is vital to every person’s life and livelihood and I choose to teach early childhood music because I love the fearless imagination of children, I love the community the music creates, and I want to support the natural joy we find in gathering together to sing and play. It all starts with our youngest, who so easily make music happen.
I have been playing and singing since I was a child but my primary musical passions are for voice, piano (especially jazz), accordion, and guitar. I currently lead music at both Phinney Ridge Lutheran Preschool and Small Faces Preschool. I have also been listening to the wisdom and training of my mother Linnea, who has been brilliantly teaching early childhood music for many, many years. Seeing how her students of 20 years have flourished is an inspiration!
I look forward to spending time making music with you and your loved ones. Please see the contact page if you have any questions and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
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ANNA-LISA NOTTER

Licensed Music Together Teacher

I am absolutely thrilled to be joined by our newest teacher. Anna-Lisa has been a participant for several years along with her daughter Willow, a huge fan of the music, and their new son Harley. Anna-Lisa has her BA in Theater and Fine Arts and is currently pursuing her Masters in Teaching K-12 with an endorsement in both subjects. She has been a co-founder of the folk trio, Hannalee, a back up singer for multiple artists (Shelby Earl, Barton Carroll, Damien Jurado, Eric Miller) and is a member of Actors Equity.

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OLYVER

Music Together Child

Ivar’s son Olyver, who is 6, has been participating in Music Together since he was 6 months old. Many children these days know only two tunes – “Happy Birthday” and “Twinkle-Twinkle” (which is the same tune as the “ABC” song and “Baa Baa Blacksheep”), but I hear Olyver singing different songs to himself all the time. Because of these classes, he now knows over 200 songs of different styles, rhythms and tonalities. The recordings that are included each semester saved our family from so much crying in the car when he was younger. When nothing else would soothe him, that music could. It is amazing how much children can soak in at a young age.

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FREMONT ABBEY

A building with community soul

The Fremont Abbey is a wonderful place – a realized vision for creative gathering space in Fremont. Built 100 years ago this year and originally known as St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, it has since been sold, used by Compass Housing, and then acquired and remodeled in 2005 by Church of the Apostles. Church of the Apostles started a non-profit, non-religious art center known as the Fremont Abbey Art Center, which was signed over to its current director, Nathan Marion, and continues to offer wonderful opportunities for the community to gather together to enjoy and create art in many forms. Our organizations are unaffiliated but they are partners in the Fremont Abbey. Check out the FAAC website here and consider attending one of their many fantastic events.