Barbara Fast serves on the piano faculty at the University of Oklahoma as Director of Piano Pedagogy and Piano Area Chair, where she coordinates the group piano program as well as teaches graduate and undergraduate piano pedagogy. Dr. Fast was awarded OU’s Regents Award for Superior Teaching in 2014, and most recently in 2020 was the recipient of OU’s prestigious David Ross Boyd Professor Award for excellence in teaching.
Her lifelong interest in effective teaching eventually led Dr. Fast to researching and discussing the practical applications of educational research for teaching in the private lesson and group class. A culmination of her interest in effective learning and practicing, and their integration with current and future technology, resulted in the book iPractice: Technology in the 21st Century Music Practice Room (Oxford, 2018). Recently, Dr. Fast has presented at numerous webinars and online town halls focused on practicing, teaching group piano, and issues in higher education related to the pandemic. Her webinar Overcoming the Brain’s Negativity Bias is available on the MTNA website. Frequent workshop topics led by Dr. Fast include efficient practicing, technology related to practicing, sight-reading, the brain and learning, overcoming performance anxiety, teaching ensemble music, newly published music, and historical keyboard pedagogy.
An active clinician and adjudicator, Dr. Fast has presented at Music Teachers National Conferences, International and National College Music Society Conferences, ISME International Conference, The Classical Music Festival Eisenstadt, Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities, NCKP National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy, EPTA International Conference, and MTA state conferences. Dr. Fast’s articles and reviews have been published in Music Performance Research, American Music Teacher, The Piano Magazine, and the New School for Music Study blog. Additionally, she has performed in chamber settings in England, Russia, Japan, and India as well as presented lecture recitals and master classes throughout the United States.
A devoted teacher, Dr. Fast’s students have won numerous awards and secured teaching positions nationally and internationally, including in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Asia. The OU collegiate chapter won the MTNA national Chapter of the Year award in 2017, 2009, and 2007. In recognition of her guidance and mentoring of students, Dr. Fast was the recipient of the Oklahoma Music Teacher of the Year award and OU’s Irene and Julian Rothbaum Presidential Professor of Excellence in the Arts.
Dr. Fast co-founded the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Forum (GP3) in 2000, a biannual conference affiliated with MTNA that focuses on group piano and piano pedagogy teaching. An active member of the Music Teachers National Association, she serves on the GP3 executive committee and currently is Immediate Past-President of the Oklahoma Music Teachers Association. She has served in numerous national and state MTNA and NCKP piano pedagogy related positions, including the Editorial Board of the MTNA E-Journal, and as Associate Editor of Piano Pedagogy Forum.
Former faculty appointments include the University of Northern Iowa, Hesston College, and Woodstock International School in India. When she is not teaching, presenting workshops, or engaging in research, she enjoys hiking, traveling, and interacting with family and friends.
Professor Emeritus (Piano)
Dr. Edward Gates teaches graduate piano literature. Hailed as "a splendid pianist" by The New York Times, he has performed in solo recitals and chamber concerts throughout the United States. He has been guest soloist with orchestras under such conductors as Robert Shaw, Guy Fraser Harrison and Luis Herrara. He studied at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Indiana University, the Mozarteum Akademie in Salzburg and the Hochschule fur Musik in Vienna. In 1971 he received a Fulbright grant to do research on Eighteenth Century pianos at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. In 1992 he was invited to give recitals, lectures and master classes in Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China. He has received the University of Oklahoma Regents' Award for Superior Teaching and the Burlington Northern Award for Faculty Achievement. In 1997 he was named the Irene and Julian J. Rothbaum Presidential Professor of Excellence in the Arts.
- BM - Oberlin Conservatory of Music
- MM - Indiana University
- DMA - Indiana University
Dr. Jeongwon Ham has won numerous competitions including the Bartok/Kabalevsky International, Paul Hindemith, Simon Belsky, and Folkwang piano competitions. She has also won top prizes at the Artur Schnabel and the Epinal International competitions, and the "best interpretation" prizes on Paul Hindemith (Hindemith competition) and Albert Roussel (Epinal International competition). The German newspaper Frankfurter Rundschau has written, "Jeongwon Ham possessed astonishing and effortless technique. She plays not only with incredible warmth, but also with great power." Jeongwon Ham has performed throughout Europe, Asia, and the United States. Her major international appearances since 2007 include solo and chamber recital performances in Beijing (China), Berlin, Bochum, and Meissen (Germany), Sheffield(England), Seoul (Korea), among others. In 2007 and 2009, she was invited as the Artist in Residence at the Renmin University of China in Beijing. In 2011 summer, she was invited as a faculty member of the Asia International Piano Academy and Festival (AIPAF) in Korea, and to present a recital at the World Piano Conference in Serbia. In 2012 summer, she is invited to perform solo and chamber performances and teach a master class at the 37th Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt in Austria. She has been featured at international and national conferences and festivals including the Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities and Festival Internationale Incontri Musicali di Sorrento in Italy. Dr. Ham's degrees are from the Folkwang Hochschule für Musik in Essen, the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, and the University of Kansas. Her principal teachers include Sequeira Costa, Klaus Hellwig, Hans Leygraf, and Ludger Maxsein. Dr. Ham has held teaching positions in Germany and the U.S.
- Künstlerische Abschlußprüfung - Folkwang Hochschule für Musik, Essen, Germany
- Konzertexamen - Hochschule der Künste, Berlin, Germany
- DMA (Piano Performance) - University of Kansas
Dr. Igor Lipinski made his orchestra debut with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra on NPR’s Performance Today and performed as a soloist with Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Cape Cod Symphony Orchestra, Butler County Symphony Orchestra, Woodstock Mozart Festival Orchestra, Lakes Area Music Festival Orchestra, and Paderewski Symphony Orchestra at Chicago’s Symphony Center. He maintains an active concert career in the U.S. with over 100 performances to date, including a live broadcast recital at Chicago’s premiere classical music station 98.7 WFMT and “33 Variations,” an award-winning theater play based on Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations.
Originally from Poland, Lipinski won the Grand Prix and the First Prize at the Paderewski Competition for Young Pianists in Kasna Dolna, Poland. He visited the U.S. at the invitation of Kazimierz Braun, Professor of Theater at the University at Buffalo, to play a role of a pianist in “Paderewski’s Children,” a theater play about the life of Ignacy Jan Paderewski. He graduated from the Paderewski Music High School in Tarnow, Poland where he studied piano with Jaroslaw Iwaneczko.
Lipinski earned his Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Musical Arts and Master of Music in Piano Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester where he studied piano under the tutelage of Douglas Humpherys. As a teaching assistant of Vincent Lenti and Tony Caramia, he received Eastman’s Teaching Assistant Prize for Excellence in Teaching. Lipinski continued his graduate studies at Northwestern University Bienen School of Music earning his Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance under the tutelage of Alan Chow.
Lipinski’s research interests focus on the history of recital programming featured in his DMA dissertation “From Liszt to Victor Borge: A Legacy of Unique Piano Performances.” Recognized for his own creative programming, Lipinski unified two of his lifetime passions, classical music and sleight-of-hand magic, in a recital program “Piano Illusions.” Originally developed for his honors senior thesis at Eastman, Lipinski collaborated on the program with Teller of Las Vegas duo Penn & Teller, eventually winning the WQXR Classical Comedy Contest at Caroline’s on Broadway. After his success in New York, Lipinski presented “Piano Illusions” at renowned concert series and festivals including Gina Bachauer International Piano Foundation in Salt Lake City and Musica del Cuore Concert Series in Hong Kong.
Before joining the piano faculty at OU, Lipinski was a member of the piano faculty at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
- DMA - Northwestern University
- MM - Eastman School of Music
- BM - Eastman School of Music
Jane Magrath is well known as an author, clinician, and pianist. Her book The Pianist's Guide to Standard Teaching and Performance Literature has become a classic reference work for pianists throughout the country, and Magrath's work in the area of the standard classical teaching literature has been central to the current revival of interest in this music throughout the U.S. She currently has more than forty volumes published with Alfred Music, and her music editions are used widely throughout the U.S. and abroad.
Dr. Magrath is frequently in demand as a clinician and teacher, and has performed and given presentations in over forty-five states and on three continents. Her workshops and master classes have drawn international acclaim. Magrath has served as Piano Coordinator for National Conferences of Music Teachers National Association and given presentations at MTNA National Conferences, the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy, the European Piano Teachers Association Conference, the International Society for Music Education, and at many state MTNA conferences. Her articles have appeared in Keyboard Companion, Clavier, and The American Music Teacher, among others. For many years she contributed New Music Reviews to Clavier and the column Polyphony to The American Music Teacher. Later her column Musings appeared regularly in Clavier Companion. Since 2011, Magrath has served as Director of the Classical Music Festival Piano Seminar in Eisenstadt, Austria.
Magrath was the first recipient of the MTNA/Frances Clark Keyboard Pedagogy Award for Outstanding Contribution to Piano Pedagogy and was inducted into the Oklahoma Heritage Higher Education Hall of Fame. In 2019 she was honored with the MTNA Achievement Award, MTNA’s highest honor, and also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Conference for Keyboard Pedagogy. Currently she is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Frances Clark Center.
A native of South Carolina, Magrath received her education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and at Wesleyan College, and was the first person to receive the DM in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Northwestern University. At the University of Oklahoma Magrath was named Regents' Professor and Rothbaum Presidential Professor in the Arts and also held the Grant Endowed Chair in Piano Pedagogy. From 1995 until 2018 she served as Director of Piano Pedagogy at OU. Her students have been placed in university and college teaching positions throughout the country as well as in many independent piano studios.
- DM - Northwestern University
- MM - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- BM - Wesleyan College
Instructor of Chamber Music and Accompanying
Professor Stephanie Leon Shames, who serves as a visiting instructor of music and accompanist for the OU School of Music, has performed internationally as a recitalist, chamber musician and concerto soloist. She has been a guest soloist with the Detroit Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Wyoming Symphony, New Orleans Philharmonic, and on tour with the Orchestra of Chur, Switzerland, among others.
As a chamber musician, she has appeared at numerous international festivals, including the Radio France-Montpellier and MIDEM Classique Festivals, the International Piano Festival at La Roque d'Antheron, the Bordeaux Festival, the Saarbrucken Chamber Music Festival, the Pine Mountain (MI), and Olympic (WA) Music Festivals. She has performed in Detroit's Orchestra Hall, Boston's Tsai Center, the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington D.C., Salle Gaveau, the Louvre Recital Hall, the American Conservatory at Fontainebleau, Victoria Concert Hall in Singapore, and London's Royal Academy.
While living in Paris, Ms. Leon Shames' collaborations regularly involved tours of France, Germany, Italy, and Great Britain and encased a broad spectrum of activities, including playing harpsichord, playing modern music, being the official accompanist at international competitions, as well as performing as a member of chamber music ensembles. Ms. Leon Shames has been featured on the B.B.C., Radio France, German radio, N.P.R., and French TV.
As an "Artistic Ambassador" selected by the USIA, Ms. Leon Shames has given masterclasses and solo and chamber music performances in Canada, Singapore, Indonesia, and throughout China. With her sister, a violinist, she has recorded two CDs of the music of Faure and Dvorak for Cassiopee Disques. With her husband and duo-pianist partner, Jonathan Shames, she co-founded The Boston Players, a chamber ensemble that drew upon Boston Symphony members and international soloists whose performances are still heard on public radio.
Ms. Leon Shames has previously taught at the University of Puget Sound and at the Interlochen and Marrowstone Music Festivals. She attended the University of Michigan where her teachers included Theodore Lettvin, Leon Fleisher, Charles Fisher, and Eugene Bossart. She joined the University of Oklahoma faculty in 2005.
- MM (Piano Performance) - University of Michigan
- BM (Piano Performance) - University of Michigan
Dr. John Patrick Murphy teaches applied piano, piano pedagogy, and keyboard skills at the University of Oklahoma as Visiting Instructor of Piano. He earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy at the University of Oklahoma as a Graduate College Alumni Fellow under the mentorship of Dr. Barbara Fast and Dr. Jane Magrath. In 2019, Dr. Murphy was awarded the Provost’s Certificate of Distinction in Teaching for outstanding instruction as a Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Oklahoma.
Dr. Murphy’s playing has earned him numerous scholarship and grants, providing performance opportunities at festivals and master classes throughout the United States and abroad. He earned his Master of Music in Collaborative Piano at the Manhattan School of Music while studying with Kenneth Merrill, and he completed dual majors in Piano Performance and Pedagogy and Music Education while earning his Bachelor of Music from the State University of New York at Fredonia under the guidance of Phyllis East. He has completed additional studies across the world, including at the Orford Music Academy in Orford, Canada, the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, the Golandsky Institute at Princeton University, and Orff-Schulwerk training at Hofstra University.
Previously, Dr. Murphy has taught music theory and vocal music in the public schools of New York State and served on the piano faculty at the Usdan Summer Camp for the Arts. Murphy’s pedagogy research has been presented nationally at the MTNA Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium and at the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Forum (GP3) and has been published in the Clavier Companion.
- DMA - University of Oklahoma
- MM - Manhattan School of Music
- BM - SUNY Fredonia