Janet Jensen serves as Progressions Director, and Music Director of Prelude Orchestra and the combined String Orchestras North and Central.
She joined the MYSO staff following her 2016 retirement from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she was Professor of String Pedagogy and Associate Director of the School of Music. Her teaching responsibilities included preparation for teaching strings in multiple settings, coursework in string literature and repertoire, and conducting the non-major All-University String Orchestras. She also directed the masters degree in String Development, a degree focused on string teaching, performance and administrative skills. As Associate Director, she oversaw undergraduate admissions, advising, and scholarship and award allocation.
Prior to her UW-Madison appointment, Dr. Jensen held interim and instructor positions in string pedagogy and string education at Oberlin Conservatory, Bowling Green (OH) State University, and the University of Texas at Austin, and she taught instrumental music in Rockford, IL and Watertown and Madison for 10 years.
Herself an alumna of the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra (WYSO), Dr. Jensen has served as a WYSO conductor, board member, and director of the chamber music program, and has also been a staff member and advisor of UW-Madison’s Summer Music Clinic for more than 30 years.
She is a strong supporter of outreach programs in the arts, lifelong learning and engagement in music, and advocacy for policy decisions in support of arts education. Her research interests have included arts education policy, pedagogy curricula, iconographic representations of historical bows, and the Swedish bowed/keyed instrument nyckelharpa.
Her MYSO association began with Progressions teaching in 2005, and has included chamber coaching in many of the years since.
Her proudest achievement is the cumulative enrollment of over 2800 students in the All-University String Orchestras, and she was named the 2016 String Teacher of the Year by the Wisconsin American String Teachers Association.
Dr. Jensen holds Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music degrees from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a PhD from the University of Texas at Austin.