Music Educators Association of New Jersey

Serving teachers and students since 1927

Member News

As teachers, we are always learning and honing our skills so that we can be the best we can be - whether it is in the studio or on the stage. To that end, we invite MEA members to submit photos and/or short articles about concerts, recitals and other related musical activities that may be of interest to fellow MEA colleagues. Click HERE to submit MEMBER NEWS!

2021

July 2021

Nancy Modell will teach ECC! (Every Child Can!) ONLINE at the NJ Suzuki Workshop, July 8-9 (12:30-5 PM both days).

What you may have missed...

May 2021

Sophia Agranovich will perform a solo recital via ZOOM on Sat., May 22 at 8 PM, sponsored by the Watchung Arts Center.

In the program:

Sonata No. 17 in D minor ‘Tempest’ by Beethoven, Hungarian Rhapsodies No. 6 and 13 by Liszt, works by Schubert/Liszt, Schumann/Liszt, and Mendelssohn. 

Tickets are $20. The box office will close on May 22 at 6:30 PM. The Zoom link will be sent via email to the ticket holders by 7 PM on the day of the event. Buying tickets in advance is strongly recommended and can be purchased securely through Eventbrite:
https://tinyurl.com/yjst8eb8

April 2021

Nancy Modell will present Creative Composing: Embracing Creativity, Nurturing Musicianship, to the Piano Teachers Forum of NJ at their online meeting.

March 2021

Members Dr. David Witten and Sondra Tammam, Co-Directors of The 10th Taubman Piano Festival 2021 at the Cali School of Music, Montclair State University, announce this annual event to be held on Fri/Sat/Sun - June 25 - 27. MEA members Dragica Ćurčić, Dan Crisci, and Nancy Modell are Festival Presenters and there will be Open Workshops for students and teachers, including Master Classes for children. Guest Master Class teachers are Dr. Lisa Yui, Yamaha Artist and Associate  Dean of Assessment and Academic programs at MSM, Dr. Cristina Gerling, Dept. Chair Porto Allegre University, Brazil, and, Father Paul Maillet, recognized Taubman Institute Faculty and former Fleisher student. Jackie Herbein, NCTM, Alexander Technique and Certified Yoga teacher of Pittsburgh, will begin each day with Body Mapping participant warm-ups. 
Included are three daily sessions (live at Leshowitz Concert Hall, or virtual, TBD), free concerts on Friday and Sunday at 5 pm, and a Saturday Gala Concert at 8 pm with Yilan Zhao, 2019 winner of the Viotti International Piano Competition.
New events include Small Group Concept Workshops and Healthy Computer Habits. 
Single-day attendance is welcome!  For registration and more information, visit https://taubmanuniversalapproach.org

On Sunday, March 7 at 12:00 PM Sophia Agranovich will be again one of the featured performers at WWFM Classical Network program 'Piano Matters', hosted by David Dubal. She will play 2nd movement; Scherzo' of Sonata No. 3 in B minor by Chopin. This program was also aired on March 3.

An interview with Sophia Agranovich and 3 excellent reviews are published in Fanfare Magazine for her CD 'Beethoven: In Celebration of the 250th Anniversary of his Birth'. It is very popular on all the major distribution sites. From February 12 to February 28 this album was streamed 14000+ times just on Spotify. For more information and review quotes, see http://sophiagranovich.com/discography.

Sophia Agranovich received a wonderful review from the American Record Guide for her CD album 'Chopin: In Celebration of the 210th Anniversary of his Birth'.  For more information and review quotes, see http://sophiagranovich.com/discography.

Nancy Modell gave her online presentation, Creative Composing: Embracing Creativity, Nurturing Musicianship, to the Piano Area class at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University.

February 2021

Judy Kessler is excited to announce that her CD, Secret Words, is now available on Amazon Music.  It's  9 original songs with music and lyrics that she composed. Judy hired a musical director/producer to put her studio band together, write parts for the other musicians, and handle the recording details. For more information about Judy, click HERE.

Judy Kessler was honored to recently be interviewed for her town's podcast, called Hawthorne Towncast.  The interviewer, Flavio Romeo,  a professional actor, and international businessman, made it a very fun and interesting conversation. Please click HERE to listen to it.

On February 14 at 12 PM Sophia Agranovich will be one of the featured performers at WWFM Classical Network program 'Piano Matters', hosted by David Dubal. She will play Nocturne in C minor Op. 48 No.1 and 1st movement of Sonata No. 2 in B♭ minor, Op. 35 by Chopin.

Nancy Modell is the instructor for the NJ Suzuki Workshop's online course, Every Child Can!, as part of the NJSW WinterFest. She will also conduct master classes as part of WinterFest, a one-day workshop for Suzuki music students.

Sophia Agranovich's new CD album dedicated to Beethoven's 250th Anniversary is released. Program: Fantasia in G minor/B Major, Op. 77; Sonata No.8 in C minor, Op. 13 'Pathetique'; Sonata No. 14 in C♯ minor ‘Quasi una fantasia’, Op. 27, No. 2 'Moonlight'Sonata No. 17 in D minor, Op. 31 No. 2, 'The Tempest'. This album will be available in hard copies, downloads and streaming via all the major distributors and online radio stations. It already had received multiple rave reviews.  Purchase link: https://amzn.to/3j75dnI

Brazilian composer, Daniel Rofer, announces the publication of Experimental Works for Children, Strange Lands, a book of new repertoire featuring a great variety of new compositions for the young. In order to write such creative and educational pieces, Daniel Rofer draws inspiration both from his abilities as an excellent pianist-improviser and also from his broad experience as a music teacher. The fifteen songs he presents in Strange Lands are refreshingly imaginative, highlighting many of the most important technical and theoretical aspects of piano pedagogy at its best. There are many correlations in Strange Lands to other works for children: from the structures and textures of Robert Schumann’s Album for the Young; glimpses of the wittiness and calmness we normally hear from Erik Satie; the experimentalism, proportionality, and daring of Bela Bartok’s Mikrokosmos; or even the mischievousness and innocence of Villa Lobos’s Cirandinhas. In a more practical sense, many of these songs are very catchy, which is a plus for piano teachers who are looking for compositions their students will enjoy practicing. In Strange Lands, Daniel Rofer works with a large range of techniques and emotions, opening a window where we can visualize his brilliant future as a composer for all levels of players, as well as presenting us with a fun and relatable new set of songs. Experimental Works for Children, Strange Lands is available at Amazon. The playlist is here.

On February 10 at 10 PM, Sophia Agranovich will be one of the featured performers at WWFM Classical Network program 'Piano Matters', hosted by David Dubal. She will play Nocturne in C minor Op. 48 No.1 and 1st movement of Sonata No. 2 in B♭ minor, Op. 35 by Chopin.

2020

December 2020

Judy Kessler is pleased to announce the launch of her new website!  Please visit http://judykesslerpiano.com/ to learn more about her studio, her arrangements, sheet music, and more. 

November 2020

Ingrid Clarfield is thrilled to announce that her newest book with Phyllis Lehrer, Classics for the Developing Pianist Study Guide Book 5, is finally available at Sheet Music Plus!!  This book contains great teaching tips for everyone's favorite advanced pieces. Ingrid believes MEA members would enjoy using both the Repertoire and Study Guide Books.

Artist, Kathy Knittel, continues her collaboration with Producer, Joan Bujacich, releasing two new holiday favorites, My Favorite Things, and Christmas Time  Is Here. In addition to all the major digital distribution centers (iTunes, Amazon, Spotify), both songs were also picked up on Pandora Radio which only accepts 3 to 5% of submissions!  The recordings feature Kathy Knittel-vocals, Joan Bujacich-Piano, Joe Bilotti-guitar,  Phil Butler-upright bass and Kevin Ellman-drums. (Kevin is on many recordings with Todd Rundgren’s Utopia.)
Kathy released a complete CD of holiday music in 2018, A Songbird's Christmas.  For easy access to digital distribution centers visit: https://kathyknittel.hearnow.

October 2020

In NJMTA's 2020 Composition Competition, Danette Whelan's student won in the Senior division and Nancy Modell's student won in the Elementary division. Both students move on to compete in the Eastern division Competition! Nancy's student also received Honorable Mention in the Senior division and Sondra Tammam's student received Honorable Mention in the Elementary division.
https://www.njmta.com/news/2020-mtna-student-composition-competitions-results

Sondra Tammam was a guest at a PIANO STAR Master Class for PIANO LEAGUE "Live" on Restream on October 20, 2020. For the event, "Sondra Tammam discusses the Taubman Approach", Sondra presented Master Class lessons on Chopin - Nocturne in C-sharp minor, Op. posth., and Granados- Andaluzza, Op.5, No. 5 from 12 Spanish Dances. It can be viewed here on YOU TUBE.

Sophia Agranovich will release a new CD this month dedicated to Chopin's 210th Anniversary: Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, complete 4 Scherzi, Polonaise 'Héroïque'. It will be available in hard copies, downloads, and streaming via all major distributors. Two excellent reviews will be published in the November/December issue of the Fanfare Magazine.

Michell Kuo and Christopher Kuo performed in the virtual concert for Minds Matter San Francisco. They are excited to share the great news that $311K was raised! Their program included:  Rachmaninoff: Waltz from Suite no.2; Lutoslawski: Paganini Variations; and, Rachmaninoff: Russian Rhapsody.

September 2020

Since September 2019, Birgit Matzerath has been presenting a "Listening Journey" through the complete 1st book of J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier 1. One Friday each month interested listeners met at the Ethical Culture Society of Essex County, 516 Prospect Street, Maplewood NJ to explore two Preludes and Fugues. Meetings begin at 7 PM and last for 60-75 minutes, followed by refreshments. The project will conclude with a complete performance of the WTC 1 on Friday, September 11 at 7:30 PM. The final concert is $25 to benefit the Ethical Culture Society and Interfaith Hospitality Network of Essex County.
 

August 2020

Since September 2019, Birgit Matzerath has been presenting a "Listening Journey" through the complete 1st book of J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier 1. One Friday each month - usually 3rd Friday -  interested listeners meet at the Ethical Culture Society of Essex County, 516 Prospect Street, Maplewood NJ to explore two Preludes and Fugues. Meetings begin at 7 PM and last for 60-75 minutes, followed by refreshments. The next date is Friday, August 14 (2nd Friday!) No 23,24. Suggested donation $10 per session; to benefit the Ethical Culture Society and Interfaith Hospitality Network of Essex County.
The project will conclude with a complete performance of the WTC 1 on Friday, (2nd Friday!) on September 11 at 7:30 PM.
On August 8, the 2020 National Flute Convention will present the world premiere of Amanda Harberg's Concerto for Piccolo and Orchestra on its Gala Concerto Concert, to be performed by Philadelphia Orchestra piccoloist Erica Peel and the Fort Worth Symphony, conducted by Ransom Wilson.

On August 6, the National Flute Convention in Dallas TX will present a recital called "The Chamber Music of Valerie Coleman and Amanda Harberg", which will feature two world premieres of chamber music composed by Amanda Harberg.

 

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