Oregon Music Teachers Association in partnership with the Oregon Community Foundation and the Nellie Tholen Fund present statewide teacher enrichment workshops. These valuable and varying presentations are free and open to all music educators, members and non-members alike.

Workshop Videos

(The following videos are available to OMTA members and are password protected. Members may find the password on page 2 of their OMTA Printed Directory. It is the same as for other password protected areas of this site.)

Nurturing Potential Into Passion

Presented by Leila Viss, 88PianoKeys.me

Starter Steps for Playing Eighteenth-Century Repertoire on the Modern Piano

Presented by Donna Gunn, M.M., NCTM

Teaching the Special Learner: Wisdom and Strategies for the Independent Music Teacher

Presented by Emily Ross, M.A., M.T. – B.C.

Tips For Preparing For Syllabus Exams

Presented by Heidi Evans NCTM

Succeeding With Sonatinas

Presented by Dr. Crystal Zimmerman NCTM, Professor of Piano, Willamette University

Music and the Brain – How We Hear And Understand Melody and Rhythm

Presented by Dr. Crystal Zimmerman NCTM, Professor of Piano, Willamette University

Authentic Baroque Dance

Presented by Daniel Stephens, M.F.A. and Judith Kennedy, M.A.

Upcoming Events

A New Jazz Piano Syllabus: That Any Teacher Can Use! 

Date/Time: Friday, September 15, 2017, 10:00AM – 12:00PM
Presenter: Toby Koenigsberg
Location: First Presbyterian Church, 601 Pine St, Klamath Falls, OR 97601
Presenting District: Klamath Basin
Local Contact: Terri Horn
Program Description:
OMTA has a new, updated, accessible Jazz Syllabus curriculum, written by University of Oregon jazz piano professor Toby Koenigsberg, that is available and teachable not only by trained jazz musicians, but by the many classically trained OMTA teachers. It progresses slowly and evenly through the core skills that make Jazz unique. There is a greater focus on listening, analyzing and, of course, improvising than in the Classical Syllabus. It is a strong program on its own, or in addition to the classical program. Mr. Koenigsberg has also written a series of books to accompany the Jazz Syllabus so both students and teachers alike can venture into this experience with information and guidance. In this presentation, Mr. Koenigsberg will introduce teachers to the new Jazz Syllabus and the resources available to use with it so that teachers can begin to inspire their students with jazz!
About the Presenter:
Toby Koenigsberg is the Associate Professor of Jazz Piano and Associate Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Oregon, and a Specially Appointed Guest Professor at Shikoku University in Tokushima, Japan. He received his Master of Music degree in jazz and contemporary media from the Eastman School of Music and pursued graduate study in classical piano at the Peabody Conservatory. While attending Eastman he received the Schirmer Award, given to the most outstanding graduate jazz performer in a graduating class.
A critically acclaimed recording artist for the Origin and Ninjazz record labels, Mr. Koenigsberg has performed throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia.
Mr. Koenigsberg is published by the Jazz Education Journal and by JazzED magazine. He has presented at the annual conference of the International Association for Jazz Education, the Royal Academy of Music In London, England, the Shenyang Conservatory in Shenyang, China, and at universities throughout the United States.

Contemporary Solo Piano Music 

Date/Time: Friday, September 22, 2017, 10:30AM – 12:15PM
Presenter: Phyllis Pieffer, NCTM
Location: Home of Patti Petersen, 3569 Conrad Drive, Bend, OR 97701
Presenting District: Central Oregon
Local Contact: Gina Rosbrook
Program Description:
Discussion and performance of 20th-21st century solos for elementary- to advanced-level piano students.
About the Presenter:
Phyllis Pieffer, NCTM (Nationally Certified Teacher of Music), has been actively involved in the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) for over 40 years, having completed her term of office as Immediate Past President of MTNA in 2007. Previously she held positions as MTNA President and President–elect, vice president for membership, and high school performance competitions coordinator on the national level. Prior to that service, she was Colorado state president, certification chair, and competition chair; West Central Division president, and junior high competition coordinator. A firm believer in the importance of local associations for independent music teachers, she was instrumental in developing the Foothills Music Teachers Association in Lakewood, CO.
Ms. Pieffer holds degrees in piano performance from the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio, and in music theory from Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. Piano teachers have included Daniel Winter, Henry Rauch, Maria Luisa Faini, and John Bloomfield. While residing in Colorado, she served as assistant professor and chair of the music department at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, CO, in addition to maintaining a successful independent music studio. During her tenure at CCU, she regularly performed in chamber music, solo, and duo-piano recitals.
While living in Aberdeen, Washington, she taught piano/piano class and theory/ear training at Grays Harbor College, taught in her independent music studio, and held a church pianist/organist position at the Aberdeen First Presbyterian Church. She also performed as part of a duo-piano team with Merry Jo Zimmer. In 2000, Pieffer-Zimmer performed the Mozart Piano Concerto No. 10 for Two Pianos and Orchestra with the Grays Harbor Symphony Orchestra. In 2008, Ms. Pieffer performed Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with Grays Harbor colleagues and the Grays Harbor Symphony Orchestra, and in 2012, she performed the Bach Brandenburg Concerto No. 5, with the Grays Harbor Symphony.
Ms. Pieffer has also served as an adjudicator in Colorado and Washington for the National Guild of Piano Teachers and for the WSMTA Adjudications program. As a clinician, she frequently gives programs on various piano pedagogy topics as well as on parliamentary procedure, and leadership topics. She has presented programs for Washington State Music Teachers Association, Colorado State Music Teachers Association, various local associations within Colorado and Washington, Texas Music Teachers Association, South Dakota Music Teachers Association, and the MTNA Leadership Summit.
Ms. Pieffer received the 2013 MTNA Distinguished Service Award at the MTNA National Conference in Anaheim, CA, in March, 2013. While serving as MTNA president, she was an invited guest of the Chinese Ministry of Culture for the first Beijing Music Festival in the summer of 2004. While there she performed as a collaborative pianist in Opening Ceremonies at the People’s Congress Hall and at a Gala Concert at the Zhong Sang Concert Hall in the Forbidden City in Beijing, China.

Encounters With Beethoven: A Multi-Media Piano Recital

Date/Time: Friday, September 29, 2017, 7:00 PM
Presenter: Dr. Kenn Willson
Location: First Presbyterian Church, 201 SW Dorion, Pendleton, OR 97801
Presenting District: Umatilla-Morrow
Local Contact: Sue Nelson
Program Description:
A fun recital using multi-media: slides, humor, cartoons, and information about Beethoven, the man.
About the Presenter:
Dr. Kenneth Willson was born in the beautiful “Big Sky” state of Montana. He earned the Bachelor of Arts degree from George Fox University, the Master of Music degree in Piano Performance from the University of Portland, and the Doctor of Arts degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Northern Colorado.

Dr. Willson is a tenured Professor of Music at George Fox University teaching music theory, music history, keyboard literature, piano pedagogy and applied piano. He has taught at the University of Northern Colorado, Linfield College and Judson Baptist College. He also works as pianist at Southminster Presbyterian Church in Beaverton, Oregon. He was the founder of Southminster’s Concert Series.

Dr. Willson conceived and implemented an “Encounters with…” Series at the turn of the century! He was asked to teach the general music history course at George Fox University and as he worked within that capacity, he thought, “Why not combine the “real” composer’s thoughts and emotions with their music”? “Why must all the composer information be so dry?” ” Let’s discuss the rock and roll–a-bility of Beethoven!!” The result is endless fun and a concert series which is slightly off the beaten path each time it is presented.

Dr. Willson was named a Bösendorfer Educational Artist by the Viennese Piano Manufacturing Company in October 2005. Kenn completed a series of concerts in Oregon and Montana in March and April of 2008.

Memorize and Remember: A Solid Approach to Secure Memory

Date/Time: Monday, October 9, 2017, 10:00AM – 12:00PM
Presenter: Dr. Jeanine Jacobson, NCTM
Location: TBD
Presenting District: Eugene
Local Contact: Laura DuBois
Program Description:
Discussion of the four types of memory and how they interact in keyboard playing. Discussion of performance anxiety.
About the Presenter:
Dr. Jeanine Jacobson obtained her Bachelor’s degree at the University of Washington. She was awarded her master’s degree from the University of Minnesota and a doctorate from the University of Oklahoma. Subsequently, she taught at California State University, Northridge for 20 years and currently holds professor emeritus status. Prior to her academic career she was an independent teacher for 30 years. She has written numerous articles and four books. Two books apply movement activities (Dalcroze) to teaching elementary piano students. Her first piano pedagogy textbook was published in 2006 by Alfred Publishing, and the second volume was released in early 2015.  The second edition of the first volume was released in 2016 and includes two new chapters. Both volumes are widely used at universities across the United States and abroad. They received the 2016 MTNA Frances Clark Keyboard Pedagogy Award.