Introducing Will and Sarah and the double bass

My name is Will Hansen. I am a double bassist, composer and educator. I’ve been teaching for SFLF since late 2018. It has been great to see the program develop over the last 4 years – pre-pandemic, in lockdown and onwards. The sensational Sarah is one of my up-and-coming double bass students. Sarah completed her Grade 1 AMEB double bass exam in late 2021, passing with honours. Sarah was the first SFLF student to complete an exam, and it was heart-warming to see her hard work (mainly over zoom!) rewarded with such an excellent result. She is currently preparing for her Grade 2 double bass exam and a Grade 1 theory exam.

Sarah has grown so much as a performer. From having some trouble playing the bass line for a part with only two notes in it, Sarah has now learnt to play all the way up to her octave and can play much more complex pieces.

After 4 years with Sarah I can see improvement in many areas beyond bass technique. Her reading comprehension and spelling have noticeably improved in her theory lessons, and her note-reading and synthesis of separate concepts and ideas have improved. Sarah’s problem-solving when tackling a difficult passage or new concept is always getting better.

Sarah’s enjoyment of playing bass is best expressed in her own words: “Having individual lessons gave me the opportunity to connect with Will on a personal level, helping give lessons a more fun vibe. Now that he has been my teacher for a long time, we share jokes and have a good connection as student and teacher”.

Sarah’s whole family are involved with the SFL program. Her parents, Simon and Lauren, are endlessly supportive and her two younger siblings, Sam and Emma (both cellists), always give it their best when playing in orchestra. Greater Sydney had better watch out for this dynamic trio!

Will Hansen, Double Bass, SFL teacher