Piano Pedagogy Faculty

Read more about our 2016 Piano Pedagogy Teacher Training Workshop faculty:



LindaMonson_headshotDr. Linda Monson
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Dr. Linda Apple Monson is an International Steinway Artist and a recent honoree of the 2014 Influential Women of Virginia award. Named a Distinguished Service Professor at George Mason University, Monson serves as Managing Director of the School of Music in the College of Visual and Performing Arts. In addition, she serves as Director of Keyboard Studies at Mason. Monson is the honored recipient of the George Mason University 2012 Distinguished Faculty Member of the Year award and the George Mason University 2009 Teaching Excellence Award “for exemplary dedication to student learning and commitment to educational excellence.” She has been a professor in Mason’s School of Music since 1999. She also serves as Director of Music at Springfield United Methodist Church. Dr. Monson serves as institutional representative for Mason’s School of Music to the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) and was responsible for leading the NASM Self-Study document and site visit for Mason’s extensive 10-year NASM review in 2013-2014. Monson has been selected for the Fulbright Senior Specialist Roster, in collaboration with the U.S. State Department and the Council for International Exchange of Scholars. She also served as an International Juror for the final round of the 2013 Washington Piano Invitational Competition held at the Kennedy Center. Monson was a featured lecture-recitalist for the 2013 International Conference of the College Music Society in Buenos Aires, Argentina. An active performer/scholar and an internationally recognized “master teacher,” she has given lecture-recitals, solo piano recitals, and piano master classes in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. In addition, Monson has recently served as President of the College Music Society Mid-Atlantic Region.

Currently serving as a Faculty Senator at George Mason University, Monson was elected by the faculty of Mason to serve on the Presidential Search Committee. Monson also serves as President of Mason’s chapter of Phi Beta Delta, a national honor society dedicated to recognizing scholarly achievement and excellence in international education. Serving on Mason’s Faculty Arts Board and Friends of Music at Mason Board, Monson is a presenter for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute of George Mason University and a pre-performance lecturer for Mason’s Great Performances at Mason series. In addition, Monson is a frequent performer at Mason as a solo and collaborative piano artist. Monson was an invited concert artist and piano master class clinician at Nanjing Normal University (China) in 2010, in collaboration with Mason’s “China 1-2-1” Initiative. She also performed as collaborative pianist at the Society for Musicology in the Ireland 2011 Conference in Dublin. Monson was a featured lecture-recital artist for International Conferences of the College Music Society in Dubrovnik, Croatia (2009), Bangkok, Thailand (2007), Madrid, Spain (2005), and San Jose, Costa Rica (2003). Recent international performances also include a lecture-recital at the 2007 Oxford Round Table in England and a featured lecture-recital in 2006 in Hannover, Germany, for the Alban Berg International Festival. Monson also delivered a lecture-recital for the Hawaii 2006 International Conference on Arts and Humanities.

An active adjudicator in piano competitions and festivals, Monson served as a juror for the 2009 Washington International Piano Competition. She was invited as a panelist and concert commentator for the Virginia Chamber Orchestra satellite broadcasts, Music of the Romantic Era and Music by Modern Masters, which were sent to all community colleges in the United States. She also served as collaborative pianist for the International Clarinet Festival and Competition at the University of Maryland. Monson has presented scholarly research and performed in featured lecture-recitals within the past few years at National Conferences of the College Music Society held in Minneapolis, Portland, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, and Miami. In addition, Monson has also presented solo piano recitals and piano master classes at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge (LSU Composer’s Forum), Davidson College (North Carolina) Artist Series, Mary Baldwin College (Virginia), West Virginia University, and University of Richmond. Monson also performed at the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music (San Juan), University of California at Berkeley, Westminster Choir College (New Jersey), University of Miami (Florida), Bowling Green University, Gardner-Webb University (North Carolina), Meredith College (North Carolina), Gettysburg College, College of Southern Maryland (performing a world premiere), and University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She was piano concerto soloist with the George Mason University Symphony Orchestra, directed by Anthony Maiello, and she performed with Richard Stoltzman and the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, directed by Jim Carroll, in performances at Mason’s Center for the Arts. An advocate of new music, Monson has presented numerous solo piano world premieres by American composers, including solo piano world premieres at George Mason University by Mason faculty composers Mark Camphouse, Glenn Smith, and Jesse Guessford. She has also recently performed in Washington D.C. at the White House, the Czech Embassy, and the New Zealand Embassy.

A native of central Pennsylvania, Monson earned three degrees from the Peabody Conservatory of Music of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore: the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Piano Performance, the Master of Music Degree in Piano, and the Bachelor of Music Education Degree with a double-major in Piano and Bassoon. She also received a Diploma in Piano from Musica en Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Spain. In addition, she studied at the Music Academy of the West, Santa Barbara, California. Monson previously served on the music faculties of the College of Notre Dame of Maryland, the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore School for the Arts, and Northern Virginia Community College. She is married to Dr. Keith L. Monson, a forensic scientist. The Monsons are blessed with two children, Kristofer and Linnea.


JoanneHaroutounian3_headshotDr. Joanne Haroutounian
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Dr. Joanne Haroutounian serves on the George Mason University piano faculty, and coordinates Mason’s piano pedagogy programs as well as Music Education Graduate Seminars covering topics concerning artistic and musical talent development.

Active internationally as a consultant in the areas of piano pedagogy, music, artistic thinking, creativity, and gifted/arts, Dr. Haroutounian regularly presents sessions at MTNA and NAGC conferences. She recently was plenary speaker at the Pacific Asian Conference on Giftedness in Singapore and the International Symposium on Gifted Arts in Seoul Korea, speaking on musical talent identification and gifted/arts education for all students.

She is well known for editing and writing almost 30 teaching publications offered through Kjos Music Co., including Explorations in Music, a comprehensive curriculum in theory, ear training, analysis, and creative composition. Her pedagogy text, Fourth Finger on Bb: Effective Strategies for Teaching Piano is a major text for college pedagogy programs across the country. Her most recent pedagogy publications include Musician’s Performance Portfolio and Palette of Touches, a set of exercises with video clips presenting tonal color for the elementary to intermediate pianist.

Dr. Haroutounian additionally offers publications in the field of gifted/music and arts education. Her publication, Kindling the Spark: Recognizing and Developing Musical Talent, offered through Oxford University Press, provides information regarding perspectives of musical talent for teachers, parents, and pedagogy or music education students in college.

Dr. Haroutounian developed the concept of Artistic Ways of Knowing, which is explained in Artistic Ways of Knowing: How to Think Like an Artist and developed through Artistic Ways of Knowing: A Curriculum for the Artist Within EVERY Student. Her book, Arts Talent ID: A Framework for the Identification of Talented Students in the Arts contains a comprehensive process for arts talent identification for use by gifted/arts specialists. These books are published by Royal Fireworks Press. Refer to www.joanneharoutounian.com for details about publications and available workshops and consultation.

Dr. Haroutounian’s specialized interest in working with talented music students grew into PhD research at the University of Virginia that led to the development of the MusicLink program, which provides long-term private instruction to promising students in financial need. She is currently the Executive Director of the MusicLink Foundation, a non-profit organization that has reached over 6,000 students in all 50 states and four Canadian provinces, providing over $10 million in scholarship in-kind donation provided by volunteer MusicLink teachers. More information on this organization can be found at MusicLink Foundation.


AnnaBalakerskaia_headshotDr. Anna Balakerskaia
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Dr. Anna Balakerskaia has shared her mastery of the piano around the world, from the great concert halls of her native Russia to the great halls of Europe and the Americas. Her versatility has made her much in demand as soloist, collaborator and chamber musician. In addition to her active performance schedule, she has nurtured several generations of extraordinary musicians as teacher, collaborator and coach. Along with her high-profile career as a soloist, since her conservatory days in St. Petersburg, Dr. Balakerskaia has enjoyed a singular ability for playing chamber music, collaborating with many of the world’s greatest musicians, including Leonid Kogan, Kirill Kondrashin, Viktor Tretyakov, and Daniel Shafran, among others. She has performed with the laureates at all of the great competitions in Europe, from the Queen Elizabeth Competition in Belgium to the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, where she was three times awarded the Best Accompaniment Diploma.

Her concert tours have taken her to Germany, Switzerland, Holland, France, Belgium, Italy, Finland, United States, Canada, and Argentina; having performed in some of the great halls of the world such as Carnegie Hall, Salle Gaveau of Paris, The Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, Teatro Colon in Buenos-Aires, Palais des Arts in Montreal, the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Corcoran Gallery, National Gallery of Arts, and Library of Congress in Washington, DC. When Dr. Balakerskaia arrived in the United States from Russia twenty-four years ago, she brought her great love for chamber music. Here she discovered an international community of brilliant musicians who share her passion. Together, they join to create a variety of musical ensembles enriched by their different backgrounds and a shared love of music.

Dr. Balakerskaia is a founding member of the “Ensemble da Camera of Washington” a trio of musicians from Brazil, Germany and Russia, based in Washington, DC., renowned across the country for their electrifying synergy, technical expertise and rich, evocative sound. The Ensemble has produced a number of notable recordings. The Ensemble is the Artists-in-Residence of the American Youth Philharmonic. They created the Chamber Music Program of the AYPO where they hold monthly masterclasses and perform a series of concerts. This program is supported by a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Dr. Balakerskaia also frequently collaborates with local and international artists for performances, as well as recordings. Dr. Balakerskaia is a sought-after piano teacher whose students have won many competitions in the United States and Europe. They perform throughout the world and several of them are today members of faculties of universities and music conservatories. She is full-time Professor of Piano and Chamber Music at George Mason University. She also serves on the faculties of international music festivals in Italy, Germany, Russia and the Netherlands, where she performs and gives masterclasses. She is Artist-in-Residence at Orfeo International Music Festival in Italy where she also continues to perform with the great musicians from her homeland who are guest artists at the festival.

Dr. Balakerskaia received her Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance, Pedagogy and Chamber Music from St. Petersburg State Conservatory, where she studied piano with Elena Gugel, Nadejda Golubovskaia, and chamber music with internationally renowned musician Tamara Fidler. Before moving to the United States, she served on the faculties of both the Moscow Conservatory and the St. Petersburg Conservatory.


JohnHealey_headshotDr. John Healey
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Dr. John Paul Healey has served on the piano faculty of George Mason University’s School of Music since 2004. Since then he has performed with students, faculty members and as a soloist in most of the performance venues on campus. He has been included as an annual faculty presenter in GMU’s Piano Pedagogy Seminars since 2009. Dr. Healey has earned piano performance degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Texas Christian University and Truman State University in Missouri, each time receiving full scholarship awards. Further studies in performance brought him to the Luzern Konservatorium’s Master Classes in Chamber Music (Switzerland) and the Internationaler Kammermusikkurs at Schloss Weinberg (Kefermarkt, Upper Austria). He has performed solo, concerto, chamber and orchestral concerts in America and Europe, including performances of the Holocaust composer Viktor Ullmann’s piano music in German and Austrian synagogues. Locally, he has been heard in such venues as the Cosmos Club, the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC), the Lyceum and the George Washington Masonic Memorial (Alexandria, Va.), Harmony Hall (Fort Washington, Md.) the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, and McNeir Recital Hall, on the campus of Georgetown University. A recording of his performance there with the Novella Chamber Players in November 2010 was recently featured on WETA radio’s Front Row Washington series.

He has been a visiting professor of piano at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and a faculty member of the Middlebury College German for Singers summer program (Middlebury, Vt.). He has also been a featured performer and a master class clinician at Virginia Music Teacher’s Association state conventions. An enthusiastic chamber musician, he collaborates regularly with members of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra and the Air Force Band in chamber recitals. He has been involved with the Levine School of Music Strings/Strings Plus summer programs since 2004, either as an accompanist, faculty member, or artist-in-residence. He arrived as an independent music teacher in Northern Virginia in 1997, and since then has often served as an adjudicator for various local solo and concerto competitions. Dr. Healey is a past president (2005-7) of the Northern Virginia Music Teachers’ Association. He lives in Alexandria, Va. with his wife, Carolyn and two sons.


PatriciaParker_headshotDr. Patricia Parker
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Patricia Parker received her Bachelors and Masters degrees in piano from the University
of Michigan, studying with Marian Owen and Eugene Bossart. During her work at Michigan, she received the three prestigious awards awarded to pianists by the School of Music. She subsequently enrolled in the special studies program at The Juilliard School of Music
where she worked with Russian pianist and teacher Sascha Gorodnitzski, his assistant Herbert Stessin and Paul Makanovitsky with whom she studied chamber music. In 1988, she received her doctorate in piano performance from Florida State University where she
studied with James Streem and Marilyn Neeley.

Dr. Parker has taught at the University of Southern Mississippi, Henry Street Settlement House in New York City and the summer academy at Interlochen, Michigan. She is professor emerita from Jacksonville State University where she taught piano, theory and
form and analysis for over two decades. During her tenure at JSU, many students from her piano studio excelled, winning competitions and moving onto graduate work. Recognized by the Tallahassee Democrat a performer who “makes poetry with her playing, Parker has performed chamber music recitals in Russia, Eastern Europe and middle-eastern countries and has played frequently in the south as a piano soloist and a chamber musician. She has been active nationally and internationally in playing and lecturing on the music of women composers, giving workshops for such groups as The College Music Society and the Music Teachers National Association.

A long time member of MTNA, Dr. Parker is presently a member of the Northern Virginia Music Teachers Association. Since moving to the Manassas area in 2002, she has accompanied in a number of private voice studios in the Fairfax area and has worked with many choral and symphonic groups in northern Virginia and Maryland. She is presently a member of the piano faculty at George Mason University and is active as an accompanist in voice studios of the school. She maintains a coaching and teaching studio in her home. Chamber appearance include the Millennium Stage of Kennedy Center and the National Gallery of Art as well as frequent appearances with GMU faculty members.



WadeBeach_headshotProf. Wade Beach
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Wade Beach is widely respected for his harmonic sophistication and superb technique, which knows no stylistic limitations. He holds a master’s degree in piano performance from the University of Maryland. He entered the world of jazz as a protégé of Sir Roland Hanna and toured the globe many times over with the United States Air Force Band jazz ensemble, The Airmen of Note. Mr. Beach keeps an active teaching and performing schedule, performing with groups around the DC area, including The Jazz Update Band.