Manju Durairaj was born and raised in India. She studied in Pune, India. She was involved in graduate research projects on comparative pedagogical practices of Indian (Carnatic) and Western Music at Middlesex University, London, UK. She graduated with her second master’s degree and K-12 certification from VanderCook College of Music, Chicago. Manju is also certified in Orff-Schulwerk, completing her levels at George Mason University, with master classes at University of St. Thomas, and at the Orff Institute in Salzburg, Austria.
Manju currently teaches Pre K-5 general music at the Latin School of Chicago. She is past president of the Greater Chicago Orff Chapter. She is a SMART certified trainer and customizes these training courses for music educators. She is adjunct professor at VanderCook College of Music where she teaches technology (IWB/tablets), movement, and general music methods teacher training courses. Manju is director of the Midway Community Choir, a non profit organization that raises money for Chicago PADS and CROP Walk.
She is on the Diversity Commission of the American Orff Schulwerk Association and on the Elementary General Music Council of IL Music Education Association. She has presented at ISME, AOSA, OAKE, NAfMe, MKMEA, IMEA, ILMEA, WMEA, TMEA and other international and national conferences. She has been published in the Orff Echo, Reverberations, Illinois Music Educators Journal, and the Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education. Her publications with Hal Leonard include InterAct with Music Assessment Levels 1 and 2, and Technology in Today’s Music Classroom.