2010 MTNA Conference – Opening Session

The conference has begun! Unfortunately, the wireless signal didn’t reach into the beautiful Kiva Auditorium where the opening session was held, so this post is slightly delayed. Hopefully that won’t be an issue throughout the rest of the conference!

Prelude music was provided by the New Mexico Brass Quintet. The session officially commenced shortly after 7:30 with the singing of the national anthem.

MTNA President, Ann M. Gipson, welcomed everyone to the conference, and then introduced Astrid Groth, President of the Professional Music Teachers of New Mexico.

Scott McBride Smith, Conference Planning Committee Chair, then greeted the audience and shared that when he and the committee met to begin planning the conference, they had three things in mind that they wanted to incorporate into the sessions:
1. Honor the art of teaching.
2. Celebrate the love of teaching.
3. Honor the role of our service to the students and families in our studios.

He closed with this quote: “We must welcome the future, remembering that it will soon be past. We must remember the past, remembering that once it is all that was possible.”

Dr. Gary Ingle addressed the teachers with his characteristic sense of humor and a bit of history about the Albuquerque area. He encouraged everyone to take a hot air balloon ride, visit the pueblo dwellings, and scale the mountains on the Sandia Peak Tramway. He went on to recognize various music organizations with which MTNA partners throughout the year.

Founder and President of the Chopin Foundation of the United States, Blanka A. Rosenthal, was then introduced and spoke to the audience. She shared how she came to start the foundation and its related competition. She announced their partnership with MTNA to provide cash prizes for students competing in the competitions.

The evening continued with a recital by the winners of the Canadian and United States Chopin Piano Cpmetitions, Leonard Gilbert and Claire Huangci, respectively. These two winners will be competing in the International Chopin Competition in Poland later this year.

Leonard Gilbert played the following three works: Scherzo No. 1 in B Minor, Op. 20; Nocturne No. 8 in D-flat Major, Op. 27, No. 2; and Ballade No. 4 in F Minor, Op. 52.

Claire Huangci played: Ballade No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 23; Andante Spianato; and Grand Polonaise in E-flat Major, Op. 22.

A lovely, lyrical beginning to the 2010 MTNA Conference!

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