JMTA High Notes
January 2021—Vol. 24, no. 4
JMTA General Meeting (using ZOOM):
January 13, 2020: 9:30am - District IV meeting and program:
“Dr. João Paulo Casarotti: The Use of Technology in Piano Lessons” ________________________________________________________________________From the (District) President’s Pen:
Happy New Year to you all! I know the holiday season may not have looked quite the same as in previous years due to COVID-19 – I certainly missed in-person holiday recitals, travel, and gatherings with my extended family on the west coast. But somehow the transition to the new calendar year and the slowly increasing number of daylight hours post-Winter Solstice (not to mention the hope of a COVID vaccine) never ceases to make me more hopeful. It was an unusual holiday, to be sure, but I enjoyed getting to establish new traditions in my family and to watch the joy of our Christmas celebrations through the eyes of my toddler.
It’s a new year, a clean slate, and a perfect time to engage in plans and dreams for the future. It’s a good opportunity to step back and take stock of just how much we managed to accomplish last year in the face of some very unprecedented challenges. I’m so proud of the resiliency our teachers and their students have demonstrated. For many of us and for our students’ families, the challenges continue to be very real, but having faced them for the majority of last year, I feel like I know what I’m up against now. I’m heading into the new term with a steely resolve and with better preparations (and upgraded equipment!) to face whatever the new year may bring.
Do you have any teaching resolutions for the new year? Building off of what I learned during the Fall term, I resolve to work with my students to continually improve our online lesson experience and to work even harder to be present for my students during a time that is bewildering and difficult for them. Last term I found that the routine structure of piano lessons seemed to help ground my students who were disoriented by so much rapid change and online learning. Despite the fact that I pivoted all of my teaching to be remote during the fall, I found that my relationship with my students actually deepened, despite the separation. I am excited to reunite and to further develop those moments of (virtual) connection, as I found teaching helped keep me grounded, too. I’m also resolving to be a bit faster with my grading, as last term I was quite frustrated that doing everything online seemed to take 8 times as long as usual!
For those of us who continue to teach online, or for those wanting to learn more, given the rise of the highly-contagious variant of COVID now in the state, we’re in for a treat at the January district meeting! Dr. João Paulo Casarotti of Baton Rouge will be talking with us about his own set-up for virtual teaching and what he has found to be the best practices in his decade plus of experience teaching online. More details and the zoom link can be found below, but feel free to check out this brief video that highlights his current private teaching set-up: https://www.youtube.com/ watch?app=desktop&v=8c1p_28CiuM
See you on Zoom!
Dr. Erin K. Bennett, NCTM
President, FSMTA District IV
Aaron Burton Krosnick passed away on Tuesday, November 24, 2020. He was formerly concertmaster of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra (1970-1980) and was Distinguished Performer-in-Residence at Jacksonville University and Artist-in-Residence with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. He and wife Mary Lou have been JMTA members for many years. Our deepest condolences go out to Mary Lou and the family in their time of loss.
Daniel Francabandiero passed away on Thursday, December 10, 2020. His obituary was in the Dec. 27 edition of the Times Union. He was Music Director/organist at Riverside Park UMC for around 40 years and a long-time JMTA member until recent years. He was still active in Federation and one of our multi-piano festival directors in the past. His handbell choir programs were memorable; he also participated in some of the Organist Guild programs. Our sympathy goes out to his family and friends at this time. _________________________________________________
JMTA General Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, November 11, 2020, Zoom
Present: Anita Renfroe, Angie Holt, Erin Bennett, Lisa Barwell, Sandra Stewart, Anna Smith, Sandra Roberts, Lynn Freeman, Michael Mastronicola, Joan Cordell, Paulette Kilts, Denise Homsley, Lorraine Sears
Call to Order: 9:33am (Anita Renfroe)
Parliamentarian: (Lynn Freeman)
Secretary Minutes: (Stefanie) - Not present
• Motion to move the October minutes, Paulette motioned, Sandra Stewart seconded
Treasurer’s Report: (Lori) - Not present
•$100 was sent to the Florida Foundation from the President’s Conference Fund, still leaves $200 for programs
• Last count was 46 members, since then we had four more renew
• New member Shani Castle, not present
• New total of 51 members
Altruistic: (Sandra Roberts)
• Sent thank you to Charlotte Mabry
• Will send thank you to Ron after today’s presentation
• An address will be helpful for cards
Communications/Internet Media: (Angie Holt)
•No December newsletter
•Just let Angie know if you want anything in the newsletter or website
•Just received bylaws from Paulette and that has been updated on website •Angie and Anita had a meeting about putting the PDF format in the email first, and the written part later; Angie is going to just attach the PDF since the formatting is much better; let Angie know if you have trouble opening the PDF attachment
Community Service: (Joan Cordell)
• If you have a 9th or 12th grader who has done a lot of community service, go to the FSMTA website, under “Student Activities” and then “Competitive Events”. You will see detailed instructions for the application, this year’s deadline is January 17, 2021
Ethics: (Maureen Rhodes) - Not present
Historian: (Lynn Roberts) - Not present
Programs: (Michael Mastronicola)
• Thank you to Sandra for writing a thank you note to Char Mabry, and for getting one to Charles Turon after today’s presentation
• Today’s program is Dr. Charles Turon, Connecting the Dots, Making Music Theory Practical, done a lot for FSMTA and on the editorial board of “The Music Teacher”
• No meeting in December
• January 13: District program, Erin Bennett is in charge of this one
• February 10: Robert Durso, one of a handful of master teachers in the country of the Dorothy Taubman approach and Senior Director of the Golandsky Institute; presenting a zoom lecture on the Taubman approach can help us learn and teach and play ornaments, Alberti bass, trills, parallel octaves with ease, healthy techniques and tips on teaching and playing those often difficult technical passages
• March 10 and April 14 there was a member request to meet live and have presenter on zoom; This is still up in the air, we’ll discuss later; If held at Keyboard Connection, an ethernet cable and microphones would be necessary to hold a partially live and virtual meeting
• Presentation Idea: Equipment needed to hold virtual lessons and presentations
Scholarships: (Kamila Shahtakhtinski) - Not present
Social: (Angie Holt)
• Not possible to be social
Student Recitals: (Sandra Stewart and Gavin Taylor (Lisa and Stefanie))
• Option 1 is livestream option, requires a lot of technology and a lot of people and good internet and a large venue to socially distance
• Option 2 is prerecorded option, we could stagger the performance times; recording could be viewed on a hidden page on the district site, or a youtube playlist (time to create a JMTA youtube channel?)
• Erin will work with Angie on JMTA Youtube Channel
• Kudos to Lisa’s student for performing in composer recital at the state convention
• Kudos to Erin Bennett for her performance at the state convention
• Moving forward with the prerecorded option: January “Winter Recital”, dates will be emailed from Michael
Student Day Report: (Angie Holt)
•The state is working on the written and aural test, Lion Theory LLC is creating it and gave demos at a meeting recently, it would be a learning curve as it is online, but it looks great! May be a surcharge to take the theory test for the students
•An email will be sent out when the students can access the sample tests •Parents could administer tests, need a way to diplomatically make sure the students won’t cheat on it
•Angie, Denise and Erin will be meeting on the audition portion of student day; maybe have it over zoom with a waiting room
Wellness Liaison: (Joan Cordell)
• “The workshops at the conference were wonderful!”
• Erin Bennett will send a detailed message about the Sonatina and Sonata Festival; adjudicator is Dr. Diana Dumlavwalla
• Conference presentations are still available at FSMTA website
Adjourned: Anita Renfroe at 10:21am
- Submitted by Stefanie Batson-Martin via a Zoom Recording
January 13, 2021 - District IV Meeting
JANUARY D4 MEETING DETAILS:
Wednesday, January 13, 2021, 9:30 a.m. on Zoom: https://unf.zoom.us/j/98595753549?
Meeting ID: 985 9575 3549
Our presenter will be Dr. João Paulo Casarotti, from Baton Rouge, LA, who will present on “The Use of Technology in Piano Lessons.” His presentation will discuss basic and more elaborate configurations for online teaching, asynchronous initiatives in piano lessons, tutorial videos, apps, and some new ideas for student recitals.
Dr. Casarotti (https://www.jpcasarotti.com/) is a Brazilian pianist and pedagogue who serves as the Assistant Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy (tenured) and the coordinator of piano studies at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He is also the organist and pianist of the First Christian Church of Baton Rouge. In addition Dr. Casarotti is the founder and artistic director of the Encontro Internacional de Pianistas, de Piracicaba (Piracicaba, SP), Encontro Internacional de Pianistas no Vale do Aço (Timóteo-MG) and the Piracicaba International Piano Concerto Competition (Piracicaba-SP), Brazil. He maintains an extensive private studio in both the U.S. and Brazil and has taught online for more than a decade.
For a taste of how Dr. Casarotti has set up his home online studio, you can watch his short demonstration here: https://www.youtube.com/watch? app=desktop&v=8c1p_28CiuM
- Dr. Erin Bennett
February 10, 2021 - JMTA General Meeting
The Taubman Approach: Playing and teaching trills, Alberti bass, & broken octave with greater clarity and ease-- A Presentation by Master Taubman Teacher Robert Durso
All are invited to join next month's meeting on Zoom at 10:30 am on Wednesday, February 10th. We will host Robert Durso, Master Teacher of the Taubman Approach to Piano Playing and founding director of the Golandsky Institute. The Golandsky Institute is the premier teaching institute for the Taubman Approach.
Mr. Durso will focus upon how the principles of the Taubman Approach canassist the teaching and learning of trills, Alberti bass, broken octaves and how to play them with greater clarity and ease.
Wednesday, February 10, 2021, 9:30 a.m. on Zoom: The link to the meeting and the program, which begins at 10:30 am is: https://unf.zoom.us/j/92522070004?pwd=TDNiUFBRcHVzV0ZNZHJQQ3lXNGVUUT09
- Dr Michael Mastronicola ____________________________________________________________________ CONGRATULATIONS!
This fall six students of Kamila Shahtakhtinski, NCTM were recognized as winners in the 4th Online “Florida Keys'' International Music Competition (IMC) in their age categories:
Mark Chen (Honorable Mention)
Eva Nguyen, Fangze Chen (3rd Place)
Annie Nguyen, Yunhan Shen (2nd Place)
Alan Li (1st Place and Timothy Brown Special Prize)
Kamila Shahtakhtinski received the Diploma Of Recognition For Excellence in Education and Teaching from the same Competition. ___________________________________________________
JMTA Treasurer Transaction Monthly Report | November 1 - November 30, 2020
11/9/2020 FSMT Foundation $100.00
11/9/2020 FSMT Conference Fund $100.00
11/23/2020 Charles Turon (Programs) $100.00
11/9/2020 Deposit MTNA Dues $50.00 11/30/2020 Deposit Interest Checking $0.81
11/30/2020 Deposit Interest Money Market $1.96
11/30/2020 Deposit to Business Shares $0.14
Current Checking $5,041.20
Piano Festival Fund (add to
Business Shares Acct) $3,333.18
Warren Fund $1,177.73
TOTAL Checking Account as
of November 30, 2020 $9,552.11
Business Money Market
Business Shares (Festival) $1,651.80
as of November 30, 2020 $11,154.62
as of November 30, 2020 $20,706.73
- Submitted by Lorie Burningham 12/04/20
____________________________________________________________________ DISTRICT IV NEWS
District IV Sonatina-Sonata Festival News:
The inaugural (and virtual) District 4 Sonatina & Sonata Festival went live shortly before Christmas. Many thanks to those who contributed students to this first event. I was overwhelmed by the participation: 25 students from 10 studios!
Digital program found here: https://www.flipsnack.com/UNFpiano/2020-fsmta-district-4-sonatina-sonata-festival.html
YouTube Playlist found here: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLV91hilHhqUfd6l68ub2fHDIzEX1kERPE
The playlist is hosted by the JMTA YouTube channel as an unlisted link (meaning you must have the link to access it; it’s not searchable on the youtube page, etc.). At the end of January I will set the link to “private” to protect student privacy, so watch away while you can! Adjudicated comments and certificates should be coming to you by or before the end of the month. Many thanks to FSU’s Dr. Diana Dumlavwalla for serving as our adjudicator.
Dr. Erin K. Bennett
2021 District IV Student Day
District IV Student Day will be held on Saturday, March 27, 2021. This event will be held virtually. The deadline to register will be Friday, February 12.
FSMTA has been working to put the written theory and aural theory tests online. Once this is completed and sample tests are available online, I will send out an email with this information. Please continue to be working with your students to prepare.
You can help your student(s) prepare now by using the Student Day guidelines given on the FMTA.org website. Click on Student Activities at the top of the screen, then on FSMTA NonCompetitive Events. Scroll down to the “Members of FSMTA” and login with the casesensitive password that was recently emailed to you, for Student Day tests, guidelines, suggested repertoire, and other materials, for each of the levels primary through 12.
In addition, the Student Day Handbook may answer more questions that you have; you can refer to your student’s level in the handbook for specific requirements. You can print all or any portion of the handbook. In addition, an independent teacher in Florida has devised a curriculum to help you prepare your students for the keyboard skills, aural theory, and written theory portions of Student Day. The guidelines follow the same leveling and guidelines that are provided in your Student Activities Handbook. These materials will assist students in mastering the FSMTA guidelines for Student Day. Contact information is as follows: Music Masters, 4111 NW 79 Ave, Coral Springs, FL 33065, 954-752-2856, email email@example.com. Contact name: Sue Colvert
Please contact me by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions you may have regarding Student Day.
Angie Holt, Student Day Chair ____________________________________________________________
Over Coffee With . . .
As we start the new year, we are getting better acquainted with our District IV president, Dr. Erin Bennett. Thank you, Erin, for taking the time to share your life experiences with us!
DR. ERIN BENNETT
Hi folks! I miss seeing you all in person, but hope this offers a bit more of my background and purpose than you usually get to learn about in meetings.
I was born to a predominantly UNmusical, but incredibly supportive family, and grew up on the west coast in Oregon. My earliest exposure came from an older cousin who taught me how to play the primo part of Heart and Soul” by taping letters to the keyboard (I’m now horrified!) so we could entertain (or torture?) our family at larger gatherings. Very soon after I started picking out familiar tunes by ear as my parents tried to find me a piano teacher. I was so fortunate to work with a wonderful teacher from age 7 to 18, and we are still in touch (she just turned 94 on Beethoven’s birthday last month). I’ve crossed the country a few times over the course of my education, with degrees from Rice University in Houston, TX, the University of Florida, and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and first moved to Jacksonville in 2009 to start teaching at UNF. But seeing as how we are all teachers, I wanted to share some stories with you of my mentors and how they shaped me into the teacher and pianist I am today:
• Virginia Hawley Buhn, my first piano teacher, was probably the third most important adult in my childhood, just behind my parents. Her philosophy was that every student could learn to play musically, and you could certainly hear that reflected in all her students. Beyond simply learning technique and repertoire, she taught me the value of MTNA membership and active participation. The “NCTM” initials after her name and signature were how I first learned about MTNA Professional Certification. She also offered me some unparalleled opportunities: she once gave an innovative presentation focused on Clara Schumann where she dressed in character and read from the Schumann family diaries and letters. I assisted her and was “cast” as her daughter, Eugenie Schumann, as part of the act at a state conference. In the mid-90s she prepared a series of videotapes showing how to use the OMTA Syllabus (Oregon’s Student Day equivalent) for effective teaching, going through each of the 10 levels. I was invited to be the student guinea pig, performing as part of her demonstration. Her model of MTNA engagement at the local, state, and national level is one I still follow today.
• Robert Roux was my piano professor at Rice and one of my greatest musical influences. I owe my facility at the instrument (and my admiration for the Liszt Sonata) to his guidance. Any time I need a tune-up, Dr. Roux is the teacher I most want to turn to. I also have many fond memories of our visits to restaurants (in Houston and in Prague) and our rather legendary (but good-natured!) political debates in the halls of the Shepherd School of Music.
• Boaz Sharon, formerly at UF, became the connecting thread for all my collegiatelevel teachers, owing to his Prague International Piano Masterclasses. I attended 3 summers, the last of which I also served as his Operations Manager. I am grateful to him, in particular, for these master classes, which were among the best of their kind, and also because it was there that I met my now-husband! It was also during my time with Boaz that I first had to opportunity to play with orchestra, an activity that continues to thrill me to this day.
• In Cincinnati I worked with husband-wife piano duo, Eugene and Elisabeth Pridonoff. While I worked primarily with Eugene, weekly studio classes were a joint affair and it taught me the musical benefits of having multiple perspectives. That I now run a joint weekly studio class at UNF with my colleague Gary Smart is due entirely to their model.
• My pedagogy advisor and assistantship supervisor at CCM, Michelle Conda, continues to be a significant mentor for me. In my last year of coursework I served as her Head Graduate Assistant, and when she went on sabbatical in my final year in residence, she asked me to serve as her sabbatical replacement, teaching her group piano and pedagogy classes, and overseeing 9 graduate assistants. Dr. Conda was the teacher who encouraged me to finally join MTNA, and who prompted my first article submission to AMT and my first presentations at MTNA national conferences and GP3 (the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Forum). From her I learned the value of conference attendance and participation, and the importance of mentoring the rising generation of music teachers.
Favorite Resource to Improve my Teaching: Attending MTNA National Conferences.
Most Terrifying Performance: Returning to Rice to perform as part of a celebration in honor of Dr. Roux’s 25th anniversary of teaching at Rice. I felt so confident and adult right until the moment I walked back onto the stage where I gave so many early performances. It was like reliving my freshman year all over again! Sometimes you can’t go home…. (the performance went fine, I think. But my nerves were shot!)
Proudest Teacher Moment(s): Watching my students present at several state and national conferences, and watching them host the MTNA Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium at UNF. Seeing them step up, become experts in a subject, and interact directly with the field is so much greater than any performance or presentation I have ever given.
Other Musically-Related Jobs I Have Held: Volunteer usher at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts (Eugene, OR), sheet music sales at Pender’s Music (Houston, TX), Operations Manager for the 4 orchestras of the Houston Youth Symphony, Operations Manager for the Prague International Piano Master Classes, Director of Educational Programs for the Beaujolais Chamber Music Workshop (France), Adjunct Instructor at Rice University (class piano) and CCM (class piano and piano pedagogy). As different as all these opportunities are, it’s fun to look back and see how they all contributed to the teacher I have become.
Best Student Motivation Secret: Travel, Music Camps, and Music Festivals (once the pandemic is over!). Hearing other perspectives, living in an immersive environment with other young pianists and musicians, hearing older (and/or better) performers are eye-opening and tremendously motivating experiences. I didn’t know I would major in music until two summers at Interlochen Arts Camp while I was high school. I worked with very fine teachers there, but it was the whole experience that convinced me that I had no choice but to have a life in the arts. So often pianists work alone (in a practice room, working predominantly on solo repertoire, etc.), and finding out there were so many other young people equally passionate about their art was a revelation to me. I’ve also been very lucky to have attended piano workshops in Paris, Barcelona, Prague, and Belgium over the years, and found the simple act of traveling outside of my comfort zone and my usual bubble to be both beneficial and inspiring. Due to COVID-19 I was sadly unable to lead my biennial UNF Music study abroad to France in 2020. Getting out of my usual routine, dealing with unforeseen challenges, meeting new people, and navigating a different language/culture grounds me and refocuses me in a way that nothing else does. I’m looking forward to the hope of relaunching the event in the summer of 2022.
Dr. Sandra Roberts is available to play for Sunday morning church services if anyone has a need. Her email is email@example.com, or you can text or call her at 904-607-9068.
Find A Teacher Section on Jaxmta.org Teachers, Please take a moment to check out your information on our Find a Teacher page. If you would like to edit, add, or delete your information, please send whatever you would like changed to our Internet Media chairperson Angie Holt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Need a Sponsor?
Does anyone in the JMTA need a sponsor or need help in any way? If so, John Scott, owner of Great Scott Music School, is interested in helping our organization. If interested, contact John at email@example.com.
Do you have too much music collected in your studio? Is there some you think you'll never use? Let's have a music exchange! Bring your unwanted music to any JMTA meeting. Bring home something new to you! Look for the "Free Music" spot. Music does not have to be brand new.
Have you found us on Facebook? Follow JaxMTA on Facebook for the latest happenings, photos, videos, and more!
Please view our website for any updates or additions to these events, as well as for more details including application deadlines: www.jaxmta.org.
DATE TIME EVENT LOCATION
January 13 9:30am District IV Meeting Zoom
(on Zoom) and program (see email for link)
February 10 9:30am-meeting JMTA General Zoom
(on Zoom) 10:30am-program Meeting followed by (see email for link) program
March 10 9:30am-meeting JMTA General Zoom
(on Zoom) 10:30am-program Meeting followed by (see email for link)
March 27 As Scheduled District IV Student Day Held Virtually
Stay tuned for more events to come! High Notes is distributed on the first of the month excluding June, August and December. All submissions are due by the 20th of the month prior to distribution. Submissions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.