About Me

Helen with students

Helen Mendenhall brings 40+ years of experience as a professional musician to her Sacramento, CA-based private studio. Specializing in teaching piano, organ, keyboard theory, sight-singing and improvisation, she has made it a life practice to help each student discover the gift of music that she firmly believes is present in everyone. Helen’s light-hearted approach to instruction is grounded in her years as a public music school teacher, and as a teacher in private studios in Red Bluff, CA and in Sacramento. Helen is a life-long student of improvisation and enjoys using multiple techniques to cultivate playfulness in her studio.

Helen has taught Kindermusik and is trained in the Orff and Kodaly methods, all of which are based on the premise that music literacy is accessible to everyone. Her next venture, which will utilize these methodologies, will be launched in the fall of 2009. Providing first experiences in singing, the KinderChorus classes will be offered to Kindergarteners and first-graders through the auspices of the Sacramento Children’s Chorus. (For further information go to www.sacramentochildrenschorus.org)

In addition to private piano and organ instruction, Helen has since 1995 served as accompanist and assistant conductor for the Sacramento Children's Chorus. She is also assistant organist at First Lutheran Church (Yuba City.) In the past, she has served as:

  • Accompanist, Camerata California (2001-2005)
  • Organist and Pianist, Sacramento Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd (1993-2002)
  • Accompanist, A Cappella Choir and University Choir, California State University, Chico (1991-1992)
  • Choir Director, Red Bluff Presbyterian Church (1984-1990)

Helen earned an undergraduate degree in Music Education (piano performance emphasis) from George Fox College and a master’s degree in Music (organ performance emphasis) from California State University, Chico. She is also a member of the Music Teachers Association of California (Sacramento Branch) and the American Guild of Organists (North Valley Branch), and has studied with David Rothe, Richard Cionco, John Butt, Kimberly Marshall, and Julian White.