Conference Materials, Schedules and Links

NCMTA 2021 Annual Conference Access!

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Conference Artist and Pedagogy Clinician:


Ruggero Piano poster about Peter Mack Sponsorship
Meredith College poster

PETER MACK, President-Elect of the Music Teachers National Association in demand as a clinician and recitalist worldwide, gave two pedagogy sessions and played a recital on 10/22/21, and taught a piano master class 10/23/21.

Those recordings are archived on Vimeo and accessible by scrolling to the appropriate place in the conference schedule, below.

63rd Annual NCMTA Conference Schedule

Friday, October 22, 2021

9:45 – 10:00 am: WELCOME

Jeanine Skinner, DMA, NCTM, NCMTA President Opens the Conference

10:00 10:55 am: Conference Artist Session I

  • The Art of the Phrase

Peter Mack, DMA, NCTM, Conference Artist and MTNA President-Elect

It’s easy to teach our students to play more musically, once we understand the basic principles of phrasing.

In this entertaining and illuminating talk, Peter Mack teaches us how to recognize the basic phrase types, and how best to interpret them.  Everyone can sound better, once they understand the art of the phrase!
Kent Lyman, DM, NCTM, NCMTA President-Elect, presiding


  • An Entrepreneurial Mindset in a Disrupted World

Karen Thickstun, MBA, MM, NCTM, MTNA National President

Join us for this special session from Karen Thickstun, National President of the Music Teachers National Association. She will be drawing on her extensive background in music and business to provide insights on exercising entrepreneurism, creativity and innovation in the midst of a rapidly changing world.
Jeanine Skinner, DMA, NCTM, NCMTA President, presiding

12:00 – 12:30 pm: Lunch

12:30 – 1:25 pm: General Interest Session

  • Broadening Diversity: Creating the first NCMTA “Virtual/Local” Association

Discussion of the creation of an NCMTA Virtual Chapter, led by Victoria Fischer Faw, DMA, NCTM, Laura Chu Stokes, NCTM, and Leonidas Lagrimas, PhD, NCTM. This session will include a short presentation describing the project, followed by a brainstorming session to gather feedback and ideas from the NCMTA membership.
Independent Music Teachers Forum, Ms. Dottie Buster, NCTM, NCMTA IMTF chair, presiding

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1:30 – 2:25 pm: Split Sessions

  • Bringing the Pop to Popular Music: Teaching Performance Practice in Pop, Rock, and R&B

Nicolas Lira, DMA, and Bridget O’Leary, MM, NCTM

How do we convey a pop musician’s style and communicate this to our students? This session will focus on realizing appropriate articulation, rhythm, and groove in examples from Elton John, Adele, Sara Bareilles, and Alicia Keys.
Sheila Dacus, NCTM, NCMTA Secretary, presiding
(Q&A begins at approximately 2:05)

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  • A System for Teaching Levels of Articulation at the Piano: It’s as Simple as 1, 2, 3, 4!

Dylan Savage, DM, NCTM

Diverse levels of articulation are vital to engaging and stylistically accurate piano performances. Dylan Savage will demonstrate his system for helping students master a wide range of articulations (touches) for higher levels of artistry.

Dylan will spend the last few minutes of his presentation talking about Arts and Advocacy in his capacity as the NCMTA Arts and Advocacy Forum chair.
Tonya Kirk, NCTM, MTNA Foundation Vice President, presiding
(Q&A begins at approximately 2:10 pm)

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2:30 – 3:25 pm: SPLIT SESSIONS

  • Q&A Follow-up to the Fall Piano Workshop

Workshop clinicians Annie Jeng, DMA, and Elena Nezhdanova, DMA, made themselves available for an opportunity to ask questions in real time relating to the fall 2021-23 Piano Festival Workshop.
Yong Im Lee Federle, DMA, NCTM, presiding

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  • Incorporating Classical Improvisation into Your Teaching Studio

Drea Wagner, NCTM

Explore proven ways of teaching classical-style improvisation to any student. This presentation is overflowing with accessible entry points (question and answer phrases, moods, form…many more!) and practical pedagogical tips. No prior improvisation experience required!
Allison Gagnon, DMA, NCMTA Vice President for Membership, presiding
(Q&A begins at approximately 3:15 pm)

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3:30 – 4:45 pm: Conference Artist Session II

  • Marvelous Moderns and their Needlessly Neglected Mid-Level Masterpieces

Dr. Peter Mack, NCTM, Conference Artist and MTNA President-Elect

In this repertoire lecture Peter Mack explores mostly modern shorter works, offering an alternative to the tried-and-true twentieth century favorites that we hear again and again.  There is a vast body of neglected repertoire out there.  This demonstration uncovers unknown pieces to spark the interest of students, teachers, adjudicators, and audiences alike. 
Kent Lyman, NCTM, presiding

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  • Integrating Diverse Piano Literature for Intermediate students

Jeanetta Powell Hopkins

This presentation illuminates pedagogical methods to incorporating diverse piano works into the existing repertoire for intermediate level pianists. Attendees will engage with new repertoire and appropriate pedagogy.
Denise Pugliese, NCTM, NCMTA Treasurer, presiding

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Peter Mack in Concert

Saturday, October 23, 2021


Jeanine Skinner, DMA, NCTM, presiding

10:00 – 11:25 am: Piano Master Class

Dr. Peter Mack, NCTM, Conference Artist and MTNA President-Elect

Eden Esters Brown, NCTM, NCMTA Piano Section Chair, presiding

Ryosei Sato-Choi
12 yo, 7th grade
J. S Bach: Prelude and Fugue in D minor, BWV 875, WTC II
Teacher: Dr. Olga Kleiankina

Yvonne Shaoyi Shih
14 yo, 9th grade
Beethoven: Sonata No. 8  in C minor, Op. 13, III. Rondo-Allegro
Teacher: Dr. Yong Im Lee Federle

Hrishikesh Ram
18 yo, 1st year college 
Maurice Ravel: Une barque sur l’ocean (from Miroirs)
Teaher: Dr. Olga Kleiankina

11:30 am – 12:25 pm: Split sessions

  • Combatting Music Performance Anxiety in the Age of Digital Performances

Abigail Lockhart

Is there a difference between Music Performance Anxiety in live versus recorded performance? This session will explore this question and offer tips on how to overcome anxiety and find success while performing virtually.
Annie Jeng, DMA, NCMTA Student Activities Chair, presiding
(Q&A begins at approximately 12:10 pm)

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  • Gateways to Impressionism: Exploring Amy Beach’s Five Improvisations, Op. 148

Leonidas Lagrimas, PhD, NCTM

Although composer Amy Beach’s symphonic works and songs are repertoire staples, her solo piano works remain somewhat neglected. This session explores two of the Five Improvisations, Op. 148, as wonderful additions to the teaching repertoire.
Jennifer L. Paschal, PhD, NCMTA Development Director, presiding
(Q&A begins at approximately 12:15 pm)

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Annette Stowe, Voice Teachers Chair, presiding

  • College Faculty Forum

Silver Linings: Moving Forward from the Pandemic
A discussion led by Leonidas Lagrimas, PhD, NCTM

This forum is an opportunity for collegiate faculty in NCMTA to discuss pedagogical issues directly related to the pandemic, in a positive and motivating light.  The hope is that we can use this opportunity to explore and share with others some of the “silver linings” that may have resulted from teaching during these unprecedented times:

    • Unexpected pedagogical success stories
    • Best practices from remote instruction (group piano/applied piano/private studio piano)
    • New and innovative ways to connect with students
    • Taking advantage of asynchronous learning
    • Remote performances/opportunities we have created
    • Any practices we may look to retain as we (hopefully) move beyond the pandemic
  • Senate Planning Committee Meeting
    Vicky Fischer Faw, DMA, NCTM, NCMTA Immediate Past President, presiding


Eden Esters Brown, NCTM, NCMTA Piano Section Chair, presiding

2:30 – 3:30 pm: NCMTA Young Composers Recital

Dr. Travis Alford, NCMTA Composition and Theory Chair, presiding


Emily Morgan, NCTM, NCMTA Piano Performance Festival Chair

Margot Hafner, NCMTA Voice Performance Festival Chair

Nicolas Lira, DMA, NCMTA Perc/Brass/String Performance Festival Chair

5:00 – 5:30 pm: Accolades and Achievements

Recognition of Newly Certified Members, Diane H. Blanchard, NCTM, MTNA Certification Chair

IMTF Scholarship Award Recipient, Ms. Dottie Buster, NCTM

NCMTA Teacher of the Year Award, Jeanine Skinner, DMA, NCTM

5:30 pm: NC MTNA Winners Recital

Mark Tollefsen, DMA, MTNA Competitions Chair

Closing remarks by Jeanine Skinner, DMA, NCTM, NCMTA President

Thank you for attending the 2021 Conference.
See you in 2022!