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The Keyboard Area emphasizes a comprehensive curriculum of solo performance, pedagogy, accompanying, and chamber music within a broad array of degree programs. Our students receive thorough training and guidance from renowned faculty giving each student the attention they need. Students have many opportunities to perform not only as soloists, but also in chamber music ensembles coached by faculty as part of the curriculum. Performance classes provide an opportunity for collective feedback on the progress of each student by faculty while discussing specific topics of interest.

Piano Pedagogy

The Piano Pedagogy track is designed to help pianists and teachers develop skills in the art of teaching piano and in operating a financially successful independent teaching studio. Curriculum is structured to the study of teaching materials and approaches for students at all levels and in all age groups from preschool children to adults. Pedagogy classes are interactive including teaching demonstrations by faculty, and guest lecturers plus field trips to independently owned music schools for observation. Students in their Junior and Senior years, will be offered the opportunity to serve as Junior Music Instructors in the Music Preparatory Division at NKU.

Leah Claiborne

Winter Piano Pedagogy Conference

February 10-11, 2023

You are invited to attend the Fifteenth Northern Kentucky Winter Piano Pedagogy Conference being held on the campus of Northern Kentucky University in Greaves Concert Hall Feb. 10-11, 2023. Our guest artist is Dr. Leah Claiborne, who will present a solo recital on Friday, Feb. 10th at 7 p.m. Saturday morning, Feb. 11th, she will share her expertise in a workshop and masterclass focusing on “Pedagogical Works by African American Women Composers.” MTA student members from CCM-MTA and NKU will coordinate the afternoon sessions that are yet to be determined. This event is co-sponsored by Northern Kentucky University, Northern Kentucky Music Teachers Association and the Ohio Music Teachers Association, Southwest District.

Register Now

There are no required fees associated with this event. For further information contact Dr. Richard Van Dyke at

Conference Schedule

9:30 a.m.
Registration/Meet and Greet (Coffee, Donuts, and Fruit)
Provided by Northern Kentucky MTA

10 a.m. - noon
Pedagogical Works by African American Women Composers
Workshop and Masterclass: Dr. Leah Claiborne

noon - 1 p.m.
Provided by OhioMTA-Southwest District

1-2:50 p.m.
Afternoon Sessions by Collegiate Student Members
Combination of Mini Sessions/Poster Sessions and Lightning Rounds

3-3:50 p.m.
Conference Recital
Celebration of Under-represented composers



Keyboard Area Highlights

  • Keyboard Area Recitals each semester featuring students enrolled in applied lessons and chamber music classes.
  • Chamber Music Ensembles that promote collaborative performances with fellow student vocalists and instrumentalists
  • Private study with actively performing faculty members trained at the finest conservatories in the United States
  • The Annual Northern Kentucky Winter Piano Pedagogy Conference, draws internationally renowned performers and pedagogues as presenters
  • Networking with members from the Northern Kentucky and Ohio Southwest District Music Teachers Associations
  • Opportunities to attend concerts and master classes featuring internationally known pianists performing in the Cincinnati Metropolitan Area with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Xavier Piano Series.
  • Keyboard Faculty have been recognized as presenters at National, State and Local workshops, sessions and master classes including the Music Teachers National Association Conference, National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy and the MTNA Collegiate Symposium.



Students will work with highly qualified faculty while pursuing their degree at NKU. Here is a link to the faculty in music directly involved with the Keyboard Area Curriculum.

Richard Van Dyke

Richard Van Dyke, D.M.A., N.C.T.M.
Lecturer, Keyboard Area Coordinator
(859) 572-5792

  • Specializes in Performance Practice and Pedagogy
  • Teaches Applied Lessons, Class Piano, Piano Pedagogy and Piano Proficiency
  • Oversees all keyboard activities
Katie Barton

Katie Barton, M.M.
Lecturer, Choral Studies; Lecturer, Piano

  • Teaches Ensemble Accompanying
  • Director of Choral Studies
Christina Seal

Christina Lalog Seal, D.M.A.
Adjunct Professor of Piano; Staff Collaborative Pianist

  • Specializes in Chamber Music with Piano
  • Coaches piano chamber ensembles
  • Teaches Applied Lessons and Class Piano
Melinda Hickman

Melinda Hickman, D.M.A.
Adjunct Professor of Piano

  • Teaches Applied Lessons and Class Piano

Hye Eun Suh, M.M.
Adjunct Professor of Piano; Staff Collaborative Pianist

  • Specializes in Class Piano
  • Teaches Applied Lessons and Class Piano
Leanne Wood

Leanne Wood, Ph.D.
Lecturer, Musicology Coordinator

  • Specializes in Musicology and teaches Piano Literature