April 18, 2016 

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In This Issue
President's Prelude
Awards Competition Winners
Rockin' for Robin Benefit
Artists in Recital
Historical Notes
Piano Masterclass
Granquist Music Competition
AIM Levels 3-9 Report
Note from the Editor
Susan Tang
March Minutes
Click here for the March General Meeting minutes.
Upcoming Events


PROGRAM: Susan Tang, "Beyond, Behind and Between the Notes:  Tools to Help Students Understand and Explore the Implied Meaning in the Score and its Effects on Interpretation"
Monday, April 18, 2016  
9:15 A.M. IMT (Independent Music Teachers) Chat  9:45 A.M. Meeting

Saturday, April 23, 2016   Steinway Gallery of Northbrook,  141 Skokie Blvd., Northbrook   5:00-7:30 P.M.

Sunday, April 24, 2016    Rolling Meadows Library   1:30 P.M. Classical,  3:30 P.M. Pop and Jazz

Sunday, April 24, 2016 
Saturday, April 30, 2016 
Send entries to Cheryl Buller, 17682 W. Westwind Dr., Gurnee, IL  60031


May 2, 2016  Luncheon Deadline Mail reservation and checks to Justyna Krafft-Weirich

Monday, May 16, 2016  Sun Shui Fine Chinese Cuisine & Sushi, 155 West Rand Road, Arlington Hts.
10:45 A.M. General Meeting followed by lunch, Mail reservation and checks to Justyna Krafft-Weirich

Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 9:30 A.M.  Home of Jennifer Cohen, 13 Old Barn Road, Hawthorn Woods
Maureen Flood
April 2016
Greetings Fellow NWSMTA Members:

I had a wonderful time at the  MTNA Conference in San Antonio Conference.  I always return so inspired!  I am hoping to bring my handouts to the meeting, so you can take a look at them.    There were so many wonderful performances, Emmanuel Ax, prize winning students, and a string trio named "Time for Three," who played the instruments very creatively and interwove classical melodies with rock, jazz, folk, etc.  I highly recommend that you listen to some of their performances on YouTube!   

As for the sessions, it's usually hard to pick a favorite, but mine was hands-down, one given by Peter Mack and Ingrid Clarfield.   Both of them are so entertaining, and such great teachers!  They had worked together, sending each other videos of their students for the other to analyze & critique, and put together their talk, "Creating Magic in the Unexpected:  Same Goals - Different Accents!"   They explored choreography, voicing, rests & fermatas, harmonic & melodic surprises, in order to teach their students how to move an audience.  

Mary Beth Molenaar had another great session - "Girl Scout Tricks - What Music Teachers Can Learn About Retention from Scouting."    She even borrowed her daughter's Girl Scout patches and wore them for her presentation!      We will have to ask her to share it with our group next year!

There were many more great sessions, on marketing, dealing with transfer students, teaching children with special needs.   I tried not to spend too much time in the Exhibit Hall, because I already have so much music, my children are complaining about what they're going to do with it when I'm gone!    There were wonderful poster sessions; one that connected college piano pedagogy students with teaching in underprivileged areas.  

Another highlight was Seymour Bernstein's master class.  At the end of it, he sat the two students down, and asked them, "Do you want to be a pianist?  You will have to face the critics - in competitions and recitals.  One day, you might have a great performance, and you will have horrible reviews.  Another day,  you might do poorly, and have rave reviews.   Perhaps you will work your hardest, and not make it into the preliminaries; another day, you might not have practiced enough, and you will make it to finals.   But - all along the way, your emotional, intellectual and physical world is all being developed........Through the study of music, you develop into a whole person, capable of contributing to others - and THAT is what's most important."   

That, to me, summed up why we do what we do.    

I came home on a high note, and then received the very sad news about Robin.  Several people have contacted me asking about services for her, and all I know is that the family is planning a memorial service called "The Gathering," and it will take place sometime in late May or early June.  I am sure that they are physically and emotionally exhausted from staying with Robin these last 3 months, and caring for her.    My heart goes out to them. I will notify you as soon as I hear anything.  

Maureen Flood


1st place: Mark Gao - Huang
2nd place: Alina Qian - Metz
3rd place: Isabelle Li - Ulitsky
Honorable Mention: Rosabelle Shi - Huang
                              Diana Tang - Lei Li
Best Performance -  Liane Lin - Bornovalova

1st place: Caden Zhao - Lei Li
2nd place: Dustin Zhao - Bornovalova
3rd place: Kevin Zhou - Lei Li
Honorable Mention: Angela Qian - Metz
                              Megan Lee - Huang
1st place: Thomas Filipiuk - Razaq
2nd place: Kristen Cai - Ulitsky
3rd place: Jasmine Wang - Ulitsky

Honorable Mention: Marilyn  YU - Bornovalova
                              Max Xu - Ulitsky
                              Hannah Davidsmeier - Huang

1st place: Karen Cai - Ulitsky
2nd place: Ben Luo - Ulitsky
3rd place: Frank Gao - Huang
Honorable Mention: Haoming Song - Huang
                              Rishelle Shi - Huang
                              Emilie Sang - Bornovalova
                              Brooklyn Mao - Huang
Best Performance:  Tracy Liu - Kostukovsky
                             Joey Shu - Metz
1st place: not awarded
2nd place: Antonio Escano - Razaq
3rd place: not awarded

Honorable Mention: Linus Zhu - Bornovalova
                             Alissa Cox - Flood



Saturday, April 30 at 1 PM

House of Music & Entertainment 
Arlington Heights, Illinois

(All Ages Show) Featuring Live Music By
The Outfit Entertainment 

Schedule:  1:30 pm  -  Cronin Trio 

2:15 pm - 4:00 pm -  The Outfit 

4:40 pm - 6:30 pm -  The Pepperland

Piano Duo

Friday, May 6 - 12:10 p.m.
Buchanan Chapel
Fourth Church, Michigan Avenue

Musicians Club of Women 
promotes appreciation of classical music
by providing free public concerts.  MCW award winners and artists are featured performers.

All concerts for  Artists in Recital  are held on the  first Friday of each month  September - June,  12:10 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Admission is  free. 
Donations are requested.

History of NWSMTA 1969-70
Scrapbook 2, by Janice Wilkans, NCTM, Historian

There are those of us who will remember Martha Auer, Verna Dean Roberts and Lola White.

In 1967-68, teachers were becoming certified by the state.  Ruth Petersen was a member in 1969-70. She taught my sister in law's daughter. Ruth and Suzanne Hynek would go to national conventions together.  Floss Edmondson, Delia Krueger, Jim Noland, Lyda Samuels, Elsie Beran, and Elinor Traeger, Wanda Hollensteiner were teachers who attended our meetings.

Carol Walgren and Vivian Pintacura are also members since 1969-70.
Our first workshop was held in 1969 in Town Hall in Randhurst.
1968-69 Officers: Suzanne Hynek, President; Geraldine Grady, First Vice President and Program Chairman; Grace Garrett Co-Chairman of Programs; Verna Dean Roberts, Second Vice President and Membership Chairman; and Ruth Petersen, Recording Secretary and Publicity Chairman. Hostess was Lola White, Librarian Chairman was Joan Drolet and Scholarship Chairman was Maria Hoar.

In 1970, Constance won a full Competitive Talent Scholarship.

The teacher meeting was held downstairs at Randhust. Before there was Aim, there was Plateaus of Progress directed by Grace Garrett in 1970. Another meeting in 1970 had Pat Cavers hosting. .

In April 1970, a teacher meeting was held at Karnes Music in Des Plaines. Harriet Jenkins was a hostess.

In May 1970, there was a teacher meeting at Lyon & Healy in Randhurst. The hostesses were Maria Hoar and Carol Stein.

June 1, 1970, Allison Nelson Neal, who gave a three day workshop, was recognized as Australia's best know piano virtuoso, she was 7 years old. She played with every symphony orchestra on the continent. She studied for five years with Serkin and Horszowski.

Joan Drolet has been a member since 1969-70.  Everyone loves her whether she is playing for a church service or whether she is at a teachers' meeting.

In June 1970, there was a luncheon and installation of officers at the Golf Mill Shopping Center. I am glad our luncheons are more local.

In 1970-1971, scholarships were instituted to senior and junior divisions. The NWSMTA library also began in 1970-71.

About May or June 1971 was the 3rd scholarship auditions.

1970-71, guidebooks were issued to teachers. It was a big blue binder filled with lots of information. I still have my big blue binder.

Feb. 1972, Norma Maki, Lois Zelk and Helen Velleur were members.

For 1972-73, Beverly Modlin, Marge Lantz, Martha Auer and Margaret Lindegard joined.

E.L. Lancaster was on the Harper College Faculty in 1973.

Feb. 1973 was the 3rd annual teachers recital presented by members of Northwest Suburban Chicago Area Group of ISMTA and MTNA. Jane Moseley was a participant.

In 1973, it was voted to have local dues of $5.00 Membership was approaching the 100 mark.

June 1973, the Northwest Area Group of teachers would go to the Chicago Area Group once a month. Carol Stein decided to set up programs for the small group of teachers and they joined the state and national for $6.00 a year.

To get all the detailed history from the beginning to June 1973, read page 321 to 324.

Meetings were now going to be held at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library as of September 17, 1973.  Post cards were mailed out to remind the members.

1972-1973, Mary Etian was a member.

1974, Jean Banta and Marge Lantz were members.

The North Shore Teachers Association was formed in 1974. They had about 25 members.

Between June 1974 to June 1975, some members formed the North Shore Area Group.

We started our year with 72 names in the yearbook and during the year, ten more names were added.

Two of our evening meetings were held at Harper College in the unfinished music building. Some meetings were held at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library.


John O'Conor will be at Music Institute of Chicago, in Evanston on Saturday April, 23 to give a piano master class as part of the MIC Master Class series. I hope some of you will be able to come to part or all of it.  Mr. O'Conor is a very dynamic teacher!

The class will be held in Nichols Concert Hall from 1pm-3:30 Mr. O'Conor will teach 4 students. He will then perform for 20 minutes and then conclude the class with a 10 minute question and answer period. 

Auditions were held on April 10 and 4 students were selected to play in the master class.

The repertoire to be played and taught is:

Mozart Sonata, K. 545 Movements 1 and 2
Bach Prelude and Fugue, No. 21 from Bk. I WTC
Beethoven Sonata, Op. 2 No.3 first movement
Haydn, Sonata Hob. XVI:50 first movement 


Registration has begun for the Granquist Music Competition, the largest music competition in the State of Illinois. This year's event will be held  Saturday, June 25, 2016 at Geneva Community High School,  416 McKinley Avenue. Teachers are encouraged to enroll students as early as possible. Online entry deadline is May 25 and mailed applications must be postmarked byMay 23. Both deadlines will be strictly enforced.
This is the 46th year of the competition established in 1970 by music educator Herb Granquist. We are pleased that the Granquist family will once again be coordinating the competition.  All contestants will be classified by instrument, age and years of instruction.  Solos, duets and ensembles are all encouraged to register.  There are three levels of competition-Olympic, Concert and Performance.
To view the brochure, rules and regulations, download a registration form or register online, visit  To receive an application by mail or for payment assistance, please call the Geneva Chamber of Commerce at  630-232-6060.  The competition is presented as part of Swedish Days Festival supported by Northwestern Medicine and hosted by the Geneva Chamber of Commerce.
Technical Musical Questions related to the competition should be directed to:
*phone:   630-346-2605


The AIM Levels 3 to 9 Performance Exams were held at Harper College on  March 13, 2016 with 41 teachers entering 184 students. Following are  the average scores for each level.

Level 9: 87.7
Level 8: 88.23
Level 7: 93.61
Level 6: 91.66
Level 5: 92.41
Level 4: 94.44
Level 3: 93.36


One of our last events is our luncheon at Sun Shui Restaurant.  Our luncheon is always full of great conversation with friends who understand your passion and your profession.  This is a chance to do something nice for yourself and build friendships with your colleagues.  We are each other's best resource.

As teachers our lives are scheduled into 30 minute segments.  We are masters at packing so much into those few minutes.  We turn students on to the sounds that were passed down hundreds of years from teacher to student (who will possibly be the next teacher).  And we delight when a child's face lights up with the pleasure of making the notes on the page speak with energy, anger, a dream or a dance.  We smile with each success remembering how special each discovery along the way is.  

There are problems that come up in trying to create an experience for each student that will make them want to continue to work hard to further their progress.  It's important to find a way to help the frustrated child not give up; or to capture the interest of the child who's attention is like trying to hold mercury in your fingers.  The experience we have is our best asset.  We have to think faster than a speeding bullet to come up with the right response to whatever comes from our student.  Perhaps we could create the next reality show based on the things our students say or do during a lesson.

I had twin students come to their first lesson a couple of weeks ago.  I invited them into my teaching studio, when one of the twins informed me he'd like to see the rest of the house first.   I'm hoping to jump tall buildings in a single bound for their next lesson.

Deb Lynch

We are pleased to have Susan Tang presenting our April program; "Beyond, Behind and Between the Notes: tools to help students understand and explore the implied meaning in the score and its effects on interpretation."
Susan Tang is Assistant Professor of Piano at Northeastern Illinois University. Passionate about teaching, Dr. Tang worked with students of all ages at the Third Street Music School Settlement (NYC), and held the position of Assistant Professor of Piano at the University of North Dakota prior to her coming to Northeastern.

An active professional performer, she enjoyed a successful New York solo piano debut at Carnegie-Weill Hall as a Winner of Artist International Management Special Presentation Winners Series. Reviews by the New York Concert Review, described her playing as having "well-grounded technique...fluid, elegant readings...highly effective interpretations." She has also been called a pianist "with technique to spare coupled with a lively intelligence...her tone is clear and conveyed with nimble agility" by David Gordon Duke, music critic for the Vancouver Sun, and after a recital at the 2008 Ravinia summer festival in collaboration with soprano Nicole Cabell, a "fluent pianist" by the Chicago Tribune.

Dr. Tang performed as a pianist/actor in many of the shows at New York City's Mabou Mines Theater Company, including a production adapted from Henrik Ibsen's Dollhouse at St. Ann's Warehouse. Invitations to perform and teach masterclasses have taken her throughout Canada, the United States, Germany, Japan, Taiwan, Korea and Colombia. She was featured live on New York City's classical music station WQXR, performing in the "The Gardens of Spain" special hosted by David Dubal; won first prize in the Eastman Concerto Competition and performed with the Eastman Symphony Orchestra; and received the coveted Performer's Certificate, a special award for excellence in performance. She was a top prize winner at the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers' Associations National Piano Competition in Montreal and received the special jury prize at the Thousand Island International Piano Competition. Dr. Tang has studied at the Banff International Keyboard Festival, Van Cliburn Piano Institute and the Leipzig Summer Academy of Music. She is also the co-editor with Marc Ponthus of Elliot Carter: A Centennial Celebration published in 2008 as part of the Mannes' Institute and Festival of Contemporary Performance. Recently, she has been invited to perform at the Ravinia Festival, Savannah Music Festival, University of Minnesota-Duluth, Blue Ridge Concert Series; present at the College Music Society National Conference in Portland; and was the guest artist/lecturer for the North Dakota Music Teachers Association state conference.

Dr. Tang's primary teachers include Nelita True, Nina Svetlanova, Robin Wood, Kenneth Cooper, Anthony De Mare and Susan Magnusson.
D.M.A., Manhattan School of Music, Piano performance
M.M., University of Rochester - Eastman School of Music, Piano performance and Performer's Certificate  B.M., University of Rochester - Eastman School of Music, Piano performance and Arts Leadership Certificate