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Dr. Holly Attar currently serves as Lecturer of Viola, Director of the Music Preparatory Program, and Master Teacher of the NKU String Project at Northern Kentucky University.

Dr. Attar is an enthusiastic teacher, administrator, and performer whose passions for music education and instruction are driven by the desire to ensure quality musical experiences to all learners and audiences. Combining her interests, she authored the book, A Handbook for Collegiate Studio Teaching: Applying the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education to Music-Centered Instruction. She has previously served as the Director of Career Services and the Student Artist Program at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and has also held teaching positions at Loveland Public Schools (OH), West Clermont Local Schools (OH), The Midland Academy of Advanced and Creative Studies (MI), and West Intermediate School (MI).

As an active violist, Dr. Attar has performed in orchestral, chamber, and solo concerts in Michigan, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Peru, and Mexico as well as in festivals including the Opera Music and Theater Festival of Lucca (Italy), the Roanoke Island Music Festival in North Carolina, and the Music at Penn's Woods Festival in Pennsylvania. She has performed at the International Midwest Clinic in Chicago, Illinois, the Bowdoin Music Festival in Maine, and as co-winner of the Clark J. Haines concerto competition with the Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra. Dr. Attar is an avid chamber musician and has served as violist in the Corbett Trio, an NKU ensemble-in-residence dedicated to engaging the community in high-quality and informative chamber music experiences. She is a frequent clinician at honors orchestras, solo and ensembles, youth symphonies, and K-12 schools throughout the Kentucky and Ohio regions.

As a dedicated proponent of music education and community outreach, she has leveraged nearly $100,000 in grants awards, and fundraisers to further educational, performance, creative, and outreach endeavors that enhance the community. Through her vision and creativity, programs in the Music Preparatory Program have become programs of distinction at NKU and have received Best of Northern Kentucky Awards for three years. She has helped secure tens of thousands of dollars in scholarships to help local youth afford high-quality music instruction and was acknowledged in the American String Teacher (a national publication of the American String Teacher’s Association) for acquiring Coda Bows for students and helping a student win a new instrument from Potter Violins.

Dr. Attar holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Viola Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, a Master of Music from the North Carolina School of the Arts, and a Bachelor of Music Education from Central Michigan University. Her major teachers include Masao Kawasaki, Catherine Carroll, Ulrich Eichenauer, Seanad Dunigan Chang, and Seunghee Lee. She is a recipient of the full viola fellowship at the North Carolina School of the Arts, Judy and Bill Watson Scholarship Award, Betty and Lou Eckersly Leadership Award, Fletcher Opera Institute Orchestras Award, Kenan Performance Outreach Grant, Semans Art Fund Grant, and William G. Quine Scholarship.

Holly Attar

Holly Attar, D.M.A.

Director, Music Preparatory Program
Lecturer of Music

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