Each pianist at the Omaha Conservatory of Music enjoys weekly, individualized instruction with outstanding Artist-Faculty as well as a unique array of valuable educational opportunities throughout the year. Pianists of every age and ability level from five-year-olds to adults and beginners to advanced players are improving their skills as they explore great music on this versatile instrument.
Omaha Conservatory offers parents the option of both traditional and Suzuki piano instruction. In traditional instruction, beginning pianists learn note reading as a natural, integrated part of their playing from the very beginning while in Suzuki instruction pianists explore the aural and technical aspects of playing first before gradually building their reading skills. In both methods, parents are a vital part of their child’s musical growth and are encouraged to attend lessons with their children and guide them in their practicing at home.
As students advance through each level of the Conservatory’s curriculum, they are recognized with a medal at a graduation ceremony. In addition to graduation, there are a variety of other goals at the Conservatory that students can pursue, including working toward practice awards, preparing a solo recital, and striving to earn masterworks, service, and outstanding soloist awards.
Many pianists also enjoy participating in community events like the Nebraska Summer Music Olympics in July and the Nebraska Music Teachers Association District and State Festivals in May and October. Several have applied and been named KVNO Classical Kids, and many advanced students enjoy the challenge and growth of preparing for competitions, including the Omaha Music Teachers Association Young Artist Competition in February and the Music Teachers National Association state-level competitions in October.
In addition to playing on fall and spring recitals and a holiday duet concert, pianists regularly share their music with the broader community in a wide range of settings including performances at hospitals and retirement communities and at venues like the Joslyn Art Museum, the Orpheum, and the Holland Performing Arts Center made possible by the collaborative partnerships between Omaha Conservatory and organizations throughout the city.
Each pianist enrolled in private lessons has an opportunity to partake in other special classes being offered which, in the past, have covered such diverse topics as the life and music of Medieval times, how to attend a concert, time management, practice tips, and feeling confident on the stage.
Students also have an opportunity to participate in our weeklong Summer Institute (OCMI) and in masterclasses and Q&As with guest artists, who have included Orli Shaham, Krassimira Jordan, Maestro Thomas Wilkins, Andrew Armstrong, and The Five Browns.
Other special workshop and camp programs that have been offered have included Piano Field Trip Camp, Zany Zoo Composition Camp, Pipe Organ Adventure at St. Cecilia’s Cathedral, Rockin’ Rhythm Camp, and “Bach to Rock.” Pianists enjoy attending concerts together occasionally as well.
Each of these experiences gives pianists a chance to share their love of music with others, challenge themselves and build musical friendships. Enjoying innovative educational experiences together and being exposed to a rich world of history, art, and possibility enhances private piano study and helps our students stay motivated and enthusiastic.