About Me

Music is a powerful force. It bypasses many of our regular functions and boundaries, and connects directly to our imaginations and feelings.

Music is for everyone. There are voices from every culture and background that add richness, depth and connection to the concert experience. Classical musicians have a lot of work to do to uplift voices that haven't been included and welcomed. As the great music educator T. André Feagin says: "It's time to roll the window down and let the fresh air in!"


The beauty of music is also undeniably enhanced by context. The acoustics of the room, the wine sparkling in our glass, the friendship of the person sitting next to us, all of these things can have a deep impact on our openness. Seeing into the backdrop of the music - hearing the scoop about the composers' lives and the waves of history washing through the music - is equally as potent.​

Hi, I'm Denise. I'm a violinist, performer, communicator, teacher. I like to listen. I'm curious about the world, and I want to see and experience as much of it as I can.

I create multi-layered performance experiences that invite audiences to broaden their vision and open their hearts, by uniting music with elements of poetry, visual art, and historical context, and sometimes even food, wine, dance and more. Music moves me differently when I understand something about where it's coming from, and it is a joy to share that.




Denise Dillenbeck has toured Europe and America with the Philadelphia Orchestra, was a member of the Oregon Symphony, and has played with the Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Pennsylvania Ballet Theater, Philly Pops, and others. She was a soloist with the American Festival Orchestra on a tour of China. Currently concertmaster of the Yakima Symphony, York Symphony, Lake Chelan Bach Festival Orchestra and the Northwest Sinfonietta, she was associate concertmaster of the Tacoma Symphony, and has served as concertmaster for orchestras in America, England and Germany. 
Denise performs chamber music for violin and percussion with her husband Mark Goodenberger, and presented contemporary classical music as a member of Third Angle New Music Ensemble. She has performed chamber music on concert series and festivals around the world, such as the American Church of Paris, Siletz Bay Music Festival, Westminster Choir College, Bravo Summer String Institute, Max Aronoff Viola Institute, Charles Castleman's Quartet Program, and Icicle Creek Summer Academy.
Passionate about teaching, she has worked with dozens of violin students and young string quartets, and has taught college courses on music, including a course on viewing world history and literature through the prism of Beethoven. As a teaching artist in the Philadelphia Orchestra's Community Partnership Program, she led elementary school students in experiential music learning, and directed workshops on aesthetic education. She is quoted at length in Eric Booth's book "The Music Teaching Artist's Bible".
As a soloist, Denise has recently played concerti by Bernstein, Saint-Saens, Sibelius, Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Prokofiev, Mendelssohn and Bach, with the Sinfonietta Nova, Boise Baroque Orchestra, Gonzaga Symphony, Yakima Symphony, York Symphony, Lake Union Civic Orchestra, Olympia Symphony, Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra, Washington-Idaho Symphony, Salem Chamber Orchestra, Tacoma Community College Orchestra, Central Washington University Orchestra, Lake Chelan Bach Festival Orchestra, and has upcoming engagements with the Northwest Sinfonietta and Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra. She has recorded solo and chamber works for the Albion and KOCH International labels. 
Denise studied at the New England Conservatory and the University of Minnesota. She was a Fellow at Aspen, Dean of Charles Castleman's Quartet Program, program coordinator of the Philadelphia Orchestra's Strings International Music Festival, and has played for the Oregon Bach Festival, Ernest Bloch Festival, Chautauqua Music Institute, Musicorda, and the International Congress of Strings. The San Francisco Chronicle hails her playing as "simply first-rate".