The Curious Piano Teachers go to MTNA 2017

We’ve arrived! The Curious Piano Teachers (and Ed, our curious elephant) are in Baltimore for the next 6 days attending the MTNA 2017 conference. True to our name we are intending to be curious about everything.¬†

MTNA Curious Piano Teachers

As Sharon has a brand new baby I have been joined on my trip by one of our Curious Community, Angie Tse. And whether you are coming or not coming to the conference we would love you to join us on our American adventure.


Well, that’s a good question. However, in these days of the Internet and Facebook live we are aiming to give you a feel for the conference proceedings and events as they unfold. More on that later – first let’s look at what’s going on.


It’s going to be an early start as all the sessions begin at 8am! There are five threads running concurrently through the day:

  • Musician Wellness
  • Recreational Music Making
  • Teaching Artistry and Technique
  • Technology
  • Young Professionals.

These all have some fascinating sessions and we are going to be attending as many as possible, in between helping Ed to get our stand ready.


The main part of the conference runs over four days, Sunday – Wednesday. Like all good conferences the schedule is packed with a whole variety of events.

  • Presentations run from 9am – 5.30pm
  • Exhibitor Showcases fill up any gaps before 9am and at lunchtime
  • MTNA Student Competitions National Finals
  • MTNA forums and meetings
  • Poster sessions are being held on Monday and Tuesday.
  • Master classes with Leon Fleisher (advanced) and Diane Hidy and Elissa Milne (intermediate)
  • Evening concerts, including a recital by Leon Fleisher.

Of course, if this isn’t enough to keep any self respecting piano teacher busy there is also the Exhibition Hall. With over 60 exhibitors there’ll be music to browse and buy, technology and equipment to try and plenty of new ideas to explore.


We’ve been working very hard back at CURIOUS HQ to create all our handouts and freebies. We put Ed in charge of getting everything shipped out to Baltimore. He’s lived up to our expectations and it all arrived safe and sound. Opening up all the boxes in our hotel room was like Christmas all over again! We’ve got flyers about joining The Community, flyers for Let’s Play, flyers that tell delegates about my presentation¬† – you get the idea.

And then there are the PURPLE BAGS!

Anyone who joins The Community over the next few days will get some fabulous curious goodies all in one of our distinctive and eye-catching purple bags:

  • a membership certificate,
  • a printed copy of our Guiding Principles,
  • a set of 6/8 flashcards (that are seriously beautiful!),
  • a set of practice stickers
  • a small gift from Ed.


#1 Keep tuned to our Facebook Page – we are going to be popping up regularly on Facebook Live over the next few days. We’ll be talking to all the interesting people we can possibly find and inviting them to take part in our 60-second Curious Challenge. You’ll have to join us to find out more about this but just to say there are Easter Eggs involved and we already have Curious Expert Elissa Milne and Samantha Coates lined up!

#2 Join us each afternoon for some ‘virtual’ tea and cake and piano chat. We’ll be going live on Facebook around 3.30pm EST each day (that’s 7.30pm GMT).

#3 Follow us on Twitter. We are going to be tweeting regularly about Ed’s adventures at the conference. He’s planning to give you all guided tours to the Exhibition Hall, the venue and catch up with the chat during tea and coffee time.


#1 Pop by and say hello to us at booth #513. You can find out from Sally and Angie about why The Community is such a fantastic place for piano teachers to meet and exchange ideas. If you sign up to The Community during the Conference you will become the proud owner of one of our #purplebags.

#2 Join us for tea and cake each afternoon at about 3.30pm. We’ll be going live on Facebook and asking some of your favourite piano experts to take our 60-second Curious Challenge.

#3 Come to Sally’s Songs and Games for Beginner Piano Lessons session. It’s on Tuesday at 2.15 in Grand Ballroom II, III, IV is going to be filled with song and laughter and learning!

So, where ever you are in the world do join us in Baltimore for MTNA 2017!

This post was written by Dr. Sally Cathcart, co-founder of The Curious Piano Teachers.


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