2021 Conference

2021 NMTA State Conference

October 21-22, 2021

Lincoln, Nebraska
2021 Conference Bulletin with schedule
2021 Conference Registration Form

On behalf of the NMTA Executive Board, I am pleased to provide details of the 2021 Nebraska Music Teachers Association State Conference, as well as Competition and Festival events. The campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in Lincoln, Nebraska will host all events and act as co-sponsor. We are excited to be back in person this fall! We will send out detailed information regarding any restrictions or adjustments closer to the event.

NMTA State Conference: October 21-22
NMTA Performance Competition: October 23
MTNA Performance Competitions: October 23-24
NMTA State Festival: October 23-24

Conference Guests Artist

Dennis Alexander, guest clinician

Since his affiliation with Alfred Publishing Company in 1986 as a composer and clinician, Dennis Alexander has earned an international reputation as one of North America’s most prolific and popular composers of educational piano music for students at all levels. Professor Alexander retired from his position at the University of Montana in May 1996 where he taught piano and piano pedagogy for 24 years. Upon moving to California, he taught privately in addition to serving on the faculties of Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge. He currently lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico where he maintains an active composing and touring schedule.

Professor Alexander is a native Kansan, having graduated from the University of Kansas where he was a student of Richard Reber. In 1972, he was invited to join the faculty at the University of Montana and served as piano department chair in addition to his teaching duties in applied piano, class piano and piano pedagogy. In 1987, he made his New York debut at Carnegie Recital Hall with violinist Walter Olivares and continues to be active as a soloist, accompanist and chamber musician. He has served as a collaborative artist for numerous internationally recognized soloists, instrumentalists, and chamber groups. A former president of the Montana State Music Teachers Association, he is a popular clinician at state and national music teachers conventions. In 2009, he was invited by MTNA to conduct the intermediate level master class at their national convention in Atlanta and was invited to do so again in 2020 for the conference in Chicago.  Professor Alexander was a judge for “Musiquest”, a national piano competition in India and has toured twice to the far East where he performed recitals and workshops in Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia,Indonesia and South Korea.

Over the years, numerous organizations and state associations have commissioned him to write compositions. Many of his compositions are included in the National Federation of Music Study Clubs Festival required list and his music is being performed by students throughout the United States, Canada, South Africa, Australia, Asia, and Europe. One of Mr. Alexander’s most significant contributions to the repertoire is “24 Character Preludes” in all major and minor keys which includes a CD with Dennis Alexander as soloist. In 2015, he was honored by the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy with the “Lifetime Achievement Award”.  He is also a co-author of an exciting and innovative piano method entitled “Alfred’s Premier Piano Course”.  A chamber music work, entitled “Dance Suite” for piano, violin, and cello was commissioned by MTNA in 2013.  His “Nocturnes for Piano”, Bks. 1 & 2 were recently selected as the recipient of the prestigious 2020 MTNA/Frances Clark Pedagogy Award.  Mr. Alexander’s personal website, www.DennisAlexander.com has become a favorite with piano teachers and features recordings, videos, teaching tips, and much more!

Moran Chamber Players, guest artist

Dr. John Bailey is Richard H. Larson Distinguished Professor of Music. He is principal flutist with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra, with which he will appear as concerto soloist in February, 2022. He is Past President of the National Flute Association, and was program chair for NFA conventions in Washington, D.C. (2002) and San Diego (2016). Since 2001 he is conductor of the International Flute Orchestra, which tours every May, to Asia, Europe, or South America.

William McMullen, professor of oboe at the Glenn Korff School of Music, is principal oboe with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra and oboist in the Moran Woodwind Quintet. He has appeared as soloist with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra and the Nebraska Chamber Orchestra in performances of the Strauss, Mozart and Vaughan-Williams concertos.  His CD “Twentieth-Century British Music for Oboe and Piano” with pianist Catherine Herbener was released in 2002 by Crystal Records with works by Bennett, Howells, Jacob, Berkeley and Rubbra.

Dr. Nathan Koch is the Assistant Professor of Bassoon and Music Theory at the Glenn Korff School of Music and is the newest member of the Moran Quintet. In addition to his duties at the university, Dr. Koch maintains an active freelancing career throughout the Midwest and is on the faculty of the Hot Springs Music Festival. His solo and chamber music arrangements are published through TrevCo Music Publishing and have been performed internationally by prominent soloists and teachers, and recordings of his work can be heard on the Longhorn Music label.

Catherine Herbener appears as a collaborative pianist in recitals throughout the United States. As a member of the Bachman Trio, she participated in the touring program of the Nebraska Arts Council, received three grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and participated in a cultural exchange with the Republic of Tajikistan. Ms. Herbener operates a piano studio in Lincoln, Nebraska and is on the faculty of Concordia University (Nebraska).

Arnaldo Cohen, pianist, guest of Lied Center

Brazilian-born pianist Arnaldo Cohen, now living in the United States, has long had a reputation for astonishing his audiences with the musical authority and blistering virtuosity of his performances. As a former professional violinist, teacher of physics, mathematician, cocktail pianist, and avid soccer fan, Mr. Cohen’s unconventional background contributed to the aura of surprise and discovery that attended virtually every one of his public performances. Long in demand internationally, Mr. Cohen has, in the past few years, entered a rarefied echelon among performers in America as well. He is regularly invited to appear as soloist with major orchestras, such as The Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, and Los Angeles Philharmonic. His solo recitals everywhere draw enthusiastic crowds of cognoscenti. Critics, too, marvel at his mixture of musical complexity and élan.

After winning first prize at the 1972 Busoni International Competition in Italy, Mr. Cohen scored a triumph at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. Soon after, he moved to London and went on to build a repertoire of some 50 concertos, performing with such orchestras as the Royal Philharmonic, Philharmonia, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra de la Suisse Romande, and the Santa Cecilia Orchestra of Rome, collaborating with conductors Kurt Masur, Kurt Sanderling, Klaus Tennstedt, and Yehudi Menuhin. He appeared in the major concert halls of Europe, and later in the United States.

In addition to his recital and orchestral appearances, Mr. Cohen has dedicated himself to the art of chamber music. For five years he was a member of the prestigious Amadeus Trio, and he has performed with many string quartets, including the Lindsay, Chillingirian, Orlando, and Vanbrugh Quartets.

Mr. Cohen is a frequent recording artist. Recently, BIS released Mr. Cohen’s recording of the two Liszt Piano Concertos and Totentanz with the São Paulo State Symphony Orchestra, which Gramophone declared, “for unapologetic bravura combined with intimate poetry, a complete empathy with Liszt’s intentions and full-blooded recorded sound, Cohen and his cohorts are hard to beat.” He has also recorded for the label Three Centuries of Brazilian Music and an all-Liszt solo recording, both which received international acclaim. Mr. Cohen’s previous recordings for other labels such as IMP Classics, Naxos, and Vox have included classic performances of works by Liszt, Schumann, and Brahms.

An artist of diverse interests and talents, Mr. Cohen began his musical studies at the age of 5, graduating from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro with an honors degree in both piano and violin, while also studying for an engineering degree. He went on to become a professional violinist in the Rio de Janeiro Opera House Orchestra to earn a livelihood while continuing piano studies with Jacques Klein, a disciple of the legendary American pianist William Kapell. At the urging of Klein, Mr. Cohen pursued further training in Vienna with Bruno Seidlhofer and Dieter Weber.

Mr. Cohen is the recipient of a fellowship awarded by the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, and taught at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 2004, after living in London for 23 years, Mr. Cohen relocated to the United States where he is now a Distinguished Professor at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.

David von Kampen, 2021 NMTA Commissioned Composer

From Lincoln, NE, David von Kampen’s creative work spans a wide variety of genres and styles, including jazz, choral music, hymnody and liturgy, solo voice, chamber music, and musical theater. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Kansas, and Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees from the University of Nebraska. He has studied composition with James Barnes, Dan Gailey, Forrest Pierce, Eric Richards, and Randall Snyder.

David is a six-time Downbeat Award winner in graduate-level jazz writing categories, a three-time winner of the Vancouver Chamber Choir Young Composers Competition, and was named the MTNA Distinguished Composer of the Year for his song cycle “Under the Silver and Home Again.” He has been among ten winners of the ORTUS International New Music Competition, the recipient of an ASCAP Young Jazz Composer award, winner of the San Francisco Choral Artists New Voices Project, winner of the National Band Association’s Young Jazz Composers Competition, and received Honorable Mention in the New York Youth Symphony First Music Commissions. Puddin’ and the Grumble, David’s original musical with playwright Becky Boesen, was one of seven finalists for the Richard Rodgers award.

David has over 60 choral and instrumental compositions and arrangements published with Walton Music, G. Schirmer, Hal Leonard, Concordia Publishing House, Pavane Publishing, UNC Jazz Press, Graphite, MusicSpoke, and others. His music has been performed by the KHORIKOS Vocal Ensemble, the L.A. Choral Lab, KC VITAs Chamber Choir, the Taiwan Youth Festival Chorus, San Francisco Choral Artists, the U.S. Army Blues Jazz Ensemble, the Vancouver Chamber Choir, and by collegiate, all-state, high school, and church ensembles throughout the United States and internationally.

David is a lecturer of music theory and literature at the University of Nebraska, where he teaches a variety of music courses and directs the Jazz Singers. He also serves as Music Coordinator for Sanctuary Worship at Christ Lutheran Church in Lincoln. David is a member of ASCAP, the Jazz Education Network, and the American Choral Directors Association. He is active as a conductor and pianist, and as a clinician for vocal and instrumental ensembles. He lives in Lincoln with his wife Mollie and two daughters.

Paul Barnes, pianist

Praised by the New York Times for his “Lisztian thunder and deft fluidity,” and the San Francisco Chronicle as “ferociously virtuosic,” pianist Paul Barnes has electrified audiences with his intensely expressive playing and cutting-edge programming. He has been featured seven times on APM’s Performance Today and on the cover of Clavier Magazine with his recordings streamed worldwide.  

Celebrating his twenty-five-year collaboration with Philip Glass, Barnes commissioned and gave the world premiere of Glass’s Piano Quintet “Annunciation.”  The work is Glass’s first piano quintet and first work based on Greek Orthodox chant.  Barnes’ recording of the quintet with string quartet superstars Brooklyn Rider was released in October of 2019 to critical acclaim.  ResMusica in Paris wrote: “Paul Barnes, whose pianistic lines are always clear, is a marvel of dialogue with Brooklyn Rider.”

Barnes’ twelfth CD New Generations: The New Etudes of Philip Glass and Music of the Next Generation has also received rave reviews.  Gramophone Magazine wrote, “Pianists of Barnes’s great technique and musicality are a boon to new music.”  And American Record Guide commented, “This disc provides further proof of Barnes’s ability to communicate new music with flair and passion.”   Produced by Orange Mountain Music, the recording features the world-premiere recording of Dreaming Awake, a selection of Glass’s etudes and works by N. Lincoln Hanks, Lucas Floyd, Jason Bahr, Zack Stanton, Ivan Moody, and Jonah Gallagher.  

Barnes is Marguerite Scribante Professor of Music at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Glenn Korff School of Music. He was recently appointed Artistic Director of the Lied Center Piano Academy which welcomes several high-school pianists to Lincoln each summer for an intensive week of piano, composition, improvisation and collaboration.  He also teaches during the summer at the Vienna International Piano Academy and the Amalfi Coast Music Festival. In great demand as a pedagogue and clinician, Barnes has served as convention artist at several state MTNA conventions, most recently at Virginia and was named ‘Teacher of the Year” by the Nebraska Music Teachers Association.

Barnes latest recital Illumination features a contemplative and cathartic program of piano works inspired by the mystical world of chant.  Barnes, also a Greek Orthodox chanter, has collaborated most recently with Philip Glass and Victoria Bond to create piano works based on ancient byzantine and Jewish chant.  New chant-based works by Native American flutist Ron Warren and David von Kampen are also given their premiere performances.  Barnes gave the world premiere of Victoria Bond’s Illuminations on Byzantine Chant at New York’s Symphony Space in April of 2021.   Barnes will release his fourteenth recording this fall on Albany Records entitled Illumination: The Piano Works of Victoria Bond including the world-premiere recording of Illuminations on Byzantine Chant.

Barnes’ recordings are available on Spotify, Pandora, ITunes, Apple Music, YouTube, and Amazon.

Marques L.A. Garrett, conductor

A Virginia native, Marques L. A. Garrett is an Assistant Professor of Music in Choral Activities at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in the Glenn Korff School of Music. His responsibilities include conducting the auditioned Chamber Singers and non-auditioned University Chorale (soprano-alto) as well as teaching graduate choral literature. Before earning his PhD in Music Education (Choral Conducting) at Florida State University, he was the Director of Choral Activities at Cheyney University of Pennsylvania. Additionally, he holds an MM from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a BA from Hampton University.

An active conductor, Dr. Garrett serves as a guest conductor or clinician with school, church, community, and festival/honor choirs throughout the country. In addition to his conducting classes at UNL, he leads conducting workshops at other universities and conferences. His formal conducting studies were with Dr. André J. Thomas, Dr. Carole J. Ott, Dr. Carl G. Harris, Jr., and Mr. Royzell Dillard.

Dr. Garrett is an avid composer of choral and solo-vocal music whose compositions have been performed to acclaim by high school all-state, collegiate, and professional choirs including Seraphic Fire and the Oakwood University Aeolians. GIA Publications, Walton Music, Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Hinshaw Music, G. Schirmer, Beckenhorst Press, and Carus-Verlag have published several of his compositions. Commissions and premieres beginning in the fall of 2021 include performances by Festival Singers of Florida, Chor Leoni, Turtle Creek Chorale, Harvard University Choruses, Seattle Pro Musica, and Gustavus Adolphus College.

Special Guest: Victoria Bond

Victoria Bond leads a multifaceted career as composer, conductor, lecturer, and artistic director of Cutting Edge Concerts. Her compositions have been praised by The New York Times as “powerful, stylistically varied and technically demanding,” and her conducting has been called “impassioned” by the Wall Street Journal and “full of energy and fervor” by The New York Times.

Ms. Bond has composed eight operas, six ballets, two piano concertos and orchestral, chamber, choral and keyboard compositions. She has been commissioned by ensembles throughout the United States, and her compositions have been performed by operas and symphonies around the world.

Inspired by Pierre Boulez’s series, “Perspective Encounters,” Victoria Bond founded the annual Cutting Edge Concerts New Music Festival in 1998, which has premiered works by over 200 composers including works by Philip Glass, William Bolcom, Aaron Jay Kernis, Tania Leon, Joan Tower, David Del Tredici, Eric Salzman and Bond herself.

In addition to her composing and performing activities, Ms. Bond is also passionate about sharing her knowledge of music with others. She is a frequent lecturer for the Metropolitan Opera Guild, and regularly gave pre-performance lectures at New York Philharmonic concerts. She has taught at The Julliard School, New York University, Nyack College, and at the annual Conductor’s Institute of South Carolina.

Ms. Bond is the recipient of the Victor Herbert Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Walter Hinrichsen Award, the Perry F. Kendig Award and the Miriam Gideon Prize. She has been awarded honorary doctorates from Hollins and Roanoke Colleges, and Washington and Lee University, and was voted Woman of the Year, Virginia in 1990 and 1991.

Victoria Bond is the first woman awarded a doctorate in orchestral conducting from the Juilliard School where she also received her Master’s degree. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California. Her teachers include Ingolf Dahl and Roger Sessions (composition); William Vennard (voice); Jean Morel, James Conlon, Sixteen Ehrling, Leonard Slatkin, and Herbert Blomstedt (conducting). While a student at Juilliard, Ms. Bond also worked with some of the most eminent names in classical music, including Herbert von Karajan, Pierre Boulez, Aaron Copland, and Mstislav Rostropovich.

Madeline Rogers

Originally from Eldorado, IL, Madeline Rogers earned a Masters in Music from Indiana University Jacobs School of Music as a student of André Watts, and a Doctorate in Musical Arts from the University of Nebraska with Paul Barnes. Rogers is an accomplished solo and collaborative performer in the US and abroad. She is frequently requested to collaborate with other faculty and guest artists, most recently collaborating with faculty from various campuses across Nebraska to present a program of music inspired by Shakespeare at Churchill College in Cambridge, UK. Other international performances include collaboration with Maestro Andrea Grassi in 2017, in lectures pertaining to his Henle Urtext edition of the clarinet music of Brahms. Rogers is an experienced instructor, having taught in both private studio and class piano settings since 2010. While pursuing her doctorate at UNL she served as studio assistant to Paul Barnes, teaching collegiate pianists and instructing applied lessons and piano literature classes. She currently serves as an Artist-Faculty member at the Omaha Conservatory of Music.


Hyatt Place Lincoln/Downtown-Haymarket
600 Q Street
Lincoln, NE 68508

Rate: Two Queen Beds, $89
**Includes parking, internet and breakfast

Call 1-888-591-1234 and give group code G-6428
or go to https://www.hyatt.com/en-US/group-booking/LNKZL/G-6428

Cut-off date: Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Download the NMTA SUMMER BULLETIN 2021.

Download the 2021 Conference Registration Form.