I love the internet. Without it, I would have far fewer friends and contacts in the piano teacher world, wouldn’t you?
A few months ago, I connected with Canadian piano teacher and composer, Martha Hill Duncan. She stated that she would be in my area in February during her husband’s sabbatical and so I asked if she would be willing to give a presentation about the music of Red Leaf Pianoworks at my home. She said yes!
If you aren’t familiar with Red Leaf Pianoworks — It is a group of Canadian composers who collaborate to promote their self-published piano compositions. They have a website here and you may have seen them in the exhibit hall at conferences such as MTNA or NCKP.
Martha talked about the composers behind Red Leaf Pianoworks and demonstrated samples of their music for us. It was fun to learn a little about each person and get a taste of each person’s unique musical voice.
- Janet Gieck
- Rebekah Maxner — (Remember my review of Rebekah’s book, “Madge’s Notebook“?)
- Martha Hill Duncan
- Beverly Porter
- Susan Griesdale
- Teresa Richert
- Joanne Bender
- John Burge
One of the things I noticed as I was listening to the pieces was how teachable the pieces were, while at the same time requiring students to get out of the typical five-finger positions that many American piano methods promote. I am always on the lookout for supplemental books that get students moving around the keyboard more.
Martha and my colleague try out a piano duet.
We had a lovely morning. Afterwards, Martha, her husband, and I went out for lunch.
Be sure to check out the Red Leaf Pianoworks website here.
One of the questions I asked Martha was whether the Red Leaf Pianoworks has considered selling individual pieces as a PDF download from their website (and with the license for unlimited studio use — I love that!). She said they haven’t talked about it much but may consider it for the future. If this is something you would be interested in, leave a comment below to give Martha some feedback about this! I’m sure they would appreciate hearing from teachers.