Patrick Lahan, piano
BM Piano Performance + Music Theory, Florida State University
MM Piano Performance, University of Maryland
DMA Piano Performance and Pedagogy, University of Oklahoma
Dr. Patrick Lahan began Suzuki piano lessons at the age of five. Nearly thirty years later, Dr. Lahan has a doctorate in piano pedagogy and performance from one of the country’s top programs. In between those milestones, Dr. Lahan has amassed a lifetime of varied musical experiences. From learning to improvise in a middle school jazz band, to singing in a choir, to becoming a member of Florida State’s Balinese gamelan ensemble, to playing lead-guitar in an Oasis tribute band with his roommate, to attending at least three dozen jam-band shows as an undergraduate, to performing a prelude and fugue for one of the world’s top Bach interpreters, Dr. Lahan has had a career that reflects his lifelong passion for music.
Dr. Lahan’s musical training has been of the highest quality. He holds Bachelor of Music degrees in piano performance and music theory from Florida State University. He has a Master of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Maryland. In 2016, Dr. Lahan received a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in piano pedagogy and performance from the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Lahan has taught college courses in aural skills, music theory, group piano and keyboard literature. Dr. Lahan is currently undergoing training as a Suzuki instructor to further develop his years of private teaching experience.
Dr. Lahan particularly enjoys performing the music of twentieth century composers and also that of J.S. Bach. Two highlights of his performing career include masterclass performances of Alban Berg’s Piano Sonata, Op. 1 for Dmitry Rachmanov and Bach’s Prelude and Fugue in A-minor (WTC. II) for Simone Dinnerstein. Dr. Lahan has recently given presentations to music teachers on topics related to teaching J.S. Bach’s Two-Part Inventions, Bartok’s Mikrokosmos, and Seymour Bernstein’s Birds. Dr. Lahan’s interests as a piano teacher include the development of aural skills in beginning piano students, the connection between art history and musical style, teaching improvisation, and the efficacy of “deliberate practice.”
Sarah York, violin
BM/BME + MM Violin Performance, University of Maryland
Ms. York has enjoyed a distinctly varied career as a music educator, from directing public middle and high school orchestra to teaching Suzuki violin at the Norman School for Strings to managing Suzuki-inspired violin programs in private schools throughout the DC metro area with the Music Kids program. She has also given technique workshops for school orchestra classes throughout Maryland and co-presented a session on bowing technique for non-string players with John Stevenson at the 2014 MMEA Fall In-Service. She currently coaches chamber music with the Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestra Program and enjoys helping recruit future Music Terps as Admissions Coordinator at the University of Maryland School of Music.
In her years teaching violin at the University of Maryland's Center for Young Children, Ms. York became fascinated by the role music instruction plays in early childhood development and has trained with Ronda Cole and Edmund Sprunger in the Suzuki method, designed specifically for teaching young children. She considers herself lucky to have her mother, a beloved preschool teacher, as a model of the patience, humor, and nurturing demeanor required for early childhood teaching.
Among Ms. York's favorite experiences as a performer have been attending the National Orchestral Institute, playing in a winner's recital for the Crescendo Competition at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall, and performing a fully memorized and choreographed interpretation of Copland's Appalachian Spring with the University of Maryland Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. York is grateful to her teachers, Dr. Gerald Fischbach, Dr. James Stern, Elizabeth Faidley, and Debbie Barron, for giving her a solid foundation in technique, artistry, and pedagogy, and for instilling a lifelong curiosity in violin playing.
Ms. York is a member of the American String Teachers Association, the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and the Music Teachers National Association.