I have the incredible honor of teaching two master classes at my alma mater today. I have two degrees from Arizona State University and had the great good fortune to connect with so many inspiring teachers there. I studied piano with Steven De Groote, Caio Pagano, and Jan Thompson. Lois McLeod was my collaborative piano teacher. I played for Douglas McEwen’s choir, Ken Seipp and Sylvia Debenport’s opera, and Glenn Hackbarth’s new music ensemble. So many of us from those years are still living our lives as musicians, performing and teaching and creating. I was lucky to train here, and it’s a joy to come back.
The title of this post is the first line of ASU’s Alma Mater hymn. Have you ever seen those gorgeous white blossoms springing improbably from the huge, spiny saguaro cactus? It’s a pretty good visual metaphor for the reward of performance after so much hard labor. Time to head to Tempe to see what’s blooming.