Gerdine Markus was born in Utrecht, the Netherlands. She received her training as a music teacher at the Royal Conservatory in her home town, studying recorder and piano. After moving to the United States in 1983, she continued her studies in New York City. After completion of a two year Suzuki Teacher Training program, she started her life's work teaching young children the piano using the Suzuki Method.
In 1989 she visited the Island of Hawai'i and fell in love with it after witnessing Kilauea’s lava flow into the ocean at night. A year later she moved there and founded a music school in Hilo, the Pacific Academy of Music, in business now for almost 30 years. During that time, she also picked up her classical voice studies again and participated in many classical music concerts, singing the solo alto parts.
Her artistic expression goes beyond music: She designed and produced "Look, Remember, Play", a 120-card memory game about Hawai'i, currently out of print (2500 sold). She received a recognition award from the Hawai'i Tourism Authority for originating this game.
In 2009 she fell in love again--mosaics this time! By attending courses on the mainland and taking classes on the Internet, she quickly mastered this new skill which has become a big passion of hers. Most recently, she discovered alcohol inks, which she not only uses to make original greeting cards and paintings, but also incorporates into her mosaics by means of applying the inks to glass. She promotes the use of recycled and repurposed materials.
Gerdine bought her first home January 2018 in the jungle of Hawai'i, near Pahoa in the district of Puna on the Island of Hawai'i, where she continues to teach piano, paint with alcohol inks and make mosaics in her newly built outdoor studio. She lives 2 miles from the newest volcano vent created during the May/June/July 2018 eruption in Leilani with lava flowing down to the ocean traveling at a speed of 15 miles per hour!