The MTNA National Conference is now is full swing here in San Antonio. Our days are packed full with informative and inspiring sessions, master classes, showcases, performances, and so much more. We plan to post more detailed conference session summaries at a later date when time allows, but for now I wanted to post a few key ideas from the day.

The big idea that stuck out to me today was the basic reason we all teach – the love of music! Sometimes in the monotony of everyday life, with one thirty minute lesson followed by another, and another, and another….it’s easy to forget the underlying reason why we all do this. Music is a beautiful gift that should be shared. Martha Hilley gave the keynote address at the RMM track of Pedagogy Saturday today and reminded us not to teach piano, but to teach the love of music. Specifically thinking about adult students, she noted that adult students have that passion to learn already and we should give them the safe space they need to follow that passion. On a similar note, Robert Duke began his session by playing a recording of Andras Schiff and Cecilia Bartoli performing Schubert’s La Pastorella and followed it by saying he began with that because “every human being should experience something that beautiful every single day.”  What a breathe of fresh air!

The final thing that reminded me of the beauty of music was Time for Three’s amazing concert this evening. They played some unique mash-ups of pop and classical pieces. I never thought I would think that the music of Katy Perry or Justin Timberlake was truly beautiful, but they created beauty through these artists and many more. Their level of musicianship and artistry was astounding, and their appeal to younger audiences especially was evident, I can’t wait to share some of their music with my students.

Here’s their arrangement of Katy Perry’s Fireworks and Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite:

Author: Spring

Spring Seals, NCTM, teaches 60 piano students ranging from age 3 to 70 in Fort Worth, Texas. She also serves as the Director of Certification for TMTA. She is passionate about helping teachers become more effective in their studios through professional development, new resources, and fresh ideas.