GRAB EARLY-BIRD REGISTRATION for the 2022 Piano Camp for Piano Teachers “Sorting Out the Piano Classics: What to Teach and When”

It’s time for our biennial VIRTUAL conference – the 2022 Piano Camp for Piano Teachers! Our theme voted by teachers this year is “Sorting Out the Piano Classics: What to Teach and When” While this content already exists as a self-study online course at Piano Teacher Academy, many teachers asked me to present it cohort-style, where we would all view the previously-recorded material together as a group (LIVE via webinar) with plenty of time afterwards for me to answer specific questions. So here’s your chance to receive a complete walk-through of the piano classics, from mid-elementary to early advanced, with teaching tips and advice on the most commonly-taught pieces and how to present them in a logical order of progression. We’ll talk about each grade level specifically, when exactly to start classical piano literature, how to match your methods with particular classical collections, and so much more!

The 7 sessions will come to you via WEBINAR with VIDEO REPLAYS complete with LIFETIME ACCESS!

CLICK HERE to VIEW the CONFERENCE DETAILS! Early-bird discounted registration is underway and expires July 22 at midnight central!

The Conference will begin on Friday, July 22, with a PRE-CONFERENCE SESSION given by Dr. Jane Magrath!

Join us for a special Conference “warm-up!” with renown pedagogue, Jane Magrath. She’ll give us an insider’s view of her new piano teaching guide “Piano Literature for Teaching and Performance” which was just released in 2021. Besides a preview of the content, Jane will discuss how teachers can use this book to discern what is possible for students at various stages of their musical growth. I just received my copy, and wow! It’s updated with all the latest publications for piano students including new composers, neglected composers, and current information on where to find material. Don’t miss this session!

Besides myself, 3 other guest presenters will present sessions on the intricacies of teaching Mozart and Baroque/Classical ornamentation.

Teachers have often asked me for specific guidance and direction in teaching Mozart (so tricky to teach!) and ornamentation rules (how to execute ornaments in varied scenarios). I found experts to help you with both subject areas! They’ll provide you with the pinpointed clarity you need with both LIVE demonstration and close-up video and you’ll also have PLENTY of opportunity to ask them questions!

There will be door prizes for LIVE attendees and coupon codes for all registrants. Even if you can’t attend the LIVE webinars, you’ll receive “forever” access to the video replays and handouts!

Attend the webinar sessions LIVE on July 22 and July 28- 31, 2022 via your computer or mobile device from anywhere in the world AND/OR watch the replays at your leisure later on your own time without expiration!


Would you like us to send you a reminder before early-bird registration closes for good?

We’ll be glad to do so! Please click HERE to add your name to a list and we’ll send you an email reminder so you don’t miss the savings on registration. Monthly payment plans are also available!

Grab your early bird ticket before it flies away!

(Note: Conference registration will continue after the early bird expires.)


2016 Piano Camp for Piano Teachers will be ONLINE soon!

Adobe Spark(7)

We had a blast at our 2016 Piano Camp for Piano Teachers in Houston this past Friday!   For those of you who missed it, videos of the entire “in person” workshop will be available ONLINE for you to view at your leisure beginning July 15 right HERE.    You won’t need to download any videos or possess any special software.  You’ll simply log into the website and view/replay the sessions whenever you like on your desktop computer, laptop, or mobile device.


2016PCPTWEBbrochurebackOnce you’ve purchased the video course, you will have lifetime access to the videos, pdf handouts, and any content upgrades I add later!  I’m so pleased to be able to bring this “virtual” camp to interested teachers for the very first time.  Many of you have told me how you wish you could have traveled to TX. No need for that!

BIG thanks! to all the teachers who attended the LIVE event.  It was wonderful to see some returning teachers and some new faces as well.  Should you have any questions about the topics we talked about, please don’t hesitate to email me at  I know it was a long day filled with a multitude of recommended teaching pieces, tips for teaching, historical info, etc.

A HUGE thanks to the Fort Bend Music Center and owner, Rick Cochran, for providing us with such a quiet and spacious facility.  It was perfect!

And a BIG shout-out to our business donors who donated such generous door prizes for teachers in attendance:

Alfred Music Publishing
Carl Fischer
Faber Piano Adventures
Jennifer Foxx’ Music Educator Resources
Keys to Imagination
Piano Pronto
Susan Paradis’ Piano Teaching Resources
Theory Time
Willis Music Co.

Mark your calendars for our next “in-person” camp in late June 2017 in San Antonio, Texas.  In the meantime be sure to take advantage of the Early Bird Registration for the ONLINE 2016 Camp.

Pre-register before July 15 (the launch date) and you’ll receive my PDF Guide:

“A Quick Guide to the Most Popular Piano Classics Students Love to Play”

A handy outline of a balanced selection of standard repertoire most favored by students, presented by era, level, and in progressive order of difficulty.

Look forward to seeing you there! 


Saturday Morning Listening: Bartok’s Orchestral Colors

Happy Saturday and Happy New Year!  To get us all back in the spirit of listening to and playing Bartok, here are 3 excerpts for your listening pleasure this weekend.  Bartok rejected the late Romantic orchestral sounds in favor of his own palette of colors.  His orchestration ranges from brilliant combinations of rhythm, texture, and timbre to pearly threads of intertwined delicate melodies.  Enjoy!  And see you soon on the continuation of the Bartok, For Children Vol. 1 Play-Along!

1. Concerto for Orchestra (1943)

Two years before his death, Bartok was commissioned to write this concerto for “orchestra” soloist.  Consisting of 5 movements total, it is quite a showpiece highlighting the virtuosic talents of each orchestra section.  Here is the 4th movement – Interrupted Intermezzo, a rather nostalgic, sentimental work written in rondo form with some rather violent interruptions.  Note Bartok’s typical use of folk-like and pentatonic melodies, shifting meters, and irregular rhythms.


2. Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta (1936)

One of his most complicated and demanding works for sure, written in 4 continuous movements and lasting around 30 minutes.  It’s written for 2 groups of strings and an army of percussion instruments including piano, harp, and celesta.  It’s extremely eerie  and also powerfully rhythmic.  Stanley Kubrick used a portion of this 3rd movement in the movie – The Shining.  Skip to 2:05 in the video if you’re tempted.  Recognize it?

3. The Miraculous Mandarin (1918-19)

Bartok read the scenario for this ballet in a Hungarian literary magazine and immediately set out to set the grisly tale to music.  This is probably his most agressive and spectacular orchestral score, swirling with energy and jagged rhythms and both sensuous and sinister at the same time.  The first performance of the suite was given in 1928 in Budapest under the baton of Ernö Dohnányi. The first staged performance of the entire ballet did not take place in Hungary until December of 1945, two months after the composer’s death.  Read more about the story HERE.



2-Minute History: 1. The Music Staff

Script Staff

Every piano teacher occasionally encounters a curious student who just has to know more about a particular music history topic or term, or some facet of the piano.   Often we’re caught off-guard and don’t have a formulated answer ready for questions like:  “Who invented the staff?” or “Why are there 3 pedals?” This 2-minute History post about the music staff is the first of a series of posts dedicated to helping you sort out the gnarly details in order to provide a knowledgeable, yet brief explanation. Today’s post is provided by James Syler, composer, who teaches at The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Today’s 5-line staff has become universal for notating music, but arriving at this point was a long journey.   Read More

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