Pedagogy Workshops

Nancy O’Neill Breth travels widely as a lecturer and adjudicator. She has presented at multiple MTNA national conferences and at state and regional conferences including in Oregon, Montana, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and Colorado. Request a pedagogy workshop from the following topics:

Go Home & Practice!
fullsizeoutput_ac0A lecture-demonstration that shows how to help students get the most out of practicing. Addresses how to make practicing more stimulating and enjoyable, and how teachers can guide students to gradually shoulder increasing responsibility for practicing effectively. Examples at the piano of down-to-earth practice tips: what works best, how, when and why.

Mapping Music—the Road to Understanding
Few students realize how much they can learn about a new piece simply by searching finding familiar patterns. Pre-practice score analysis, or mapping, shines a light on such patterns, empowering students to rise above note-by-note practicing to a new level of understanding and enjoyment. In this interactive seminar participants do mapping exercises themselves to learn how teachers can guide students of all levels through the nuts and bolts of mapping a musical score.

Life After Lessons
What skills should students take with them when they graduate from high school? When should their teachers think about this? This workshop covers what type of training we should provide to build adequate sight-reading ability, musical literacy and the confidence and knowledge necessary for our students to become independent learners.

Technique Without Tears
This workshop lays out a proven path to technical security for piano students of any age or ability seeking comfort, facility, and a beautiful sound. This technique regimen provides enough variety to hold students’ attention, enough specific goals to keep them motivated, and even enough fun to make technique enjoyable. Demonstrates a curriculum of studies and exercises suitable for beginners to advanced students that is adaptable to any teacher’s philosophy.

Inside the Inventions
Bach inventionsAn appreciation of the genius and beauty of Bach’s two-part Inventions. A brief historical setting followed by a close examination of selected Inventions—old favorites as well as some that are seldom played. Suggestions on fingering, phrasing, dynamics, articulation, practicing, and memorizing, specifically tailored to the Inventions but applicable to any Baroque composition.

The Practice Triangle
Parent, teacher, student: what role does each one have in practicing the piano? How should one work with and relate to the other, from the initial interview through the senior recital? How can teachers motivate parents to motivate their children? How can parents help, and not help? Who should attend lessons and why? Questions to ask parents about children; questions to ask children about parents. What to do when the triangle shatters.

Two On A Bench
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A joint lecture-demonstration by Dr. Lisa Campi Walters and her pre-college teacher, Nancy O’Neill Breth. Duets double the music and triple the fun, but they also require special skills on the part of teacher and student alike. This presentation offers advice on team formation, lesson plans, repertoire, solo and team practice techniques and creative modes of instruction. Complete package includes a full-length concert of music for four hands. Corigliano, Ravel, Casella, Riley, Bartok.

Other lecture topics:

  • Sightreading
  • Memorizing Music
  • Principles of Fingering
  • 24 Scales in 8 Steps
  • Preparing for College Auditions
  • First Steps in Chamber Music 

Request a pedagogy workshop