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2017 Banquet honoring Martha Hilley and Fred Kern

Make plans to attend a magical evening filled with fine food, delightful company, and heartfelt tributes to two individuals who have inspired us all. This year at NCKP, we honor the contributions of Martha Hilley and Fred Kern. Tickets are $100, advanced purchase prior to the conference is required. Tickets will be distributed at the registration desk. The banquet will take place on Friday, July 28. It will include a reception at 6:00pm and dinner at 6:30pm. Evening concert given by Drew Petersen, 2017 Conference Artist, to follow.

Buy your ticket on the registration form or, if you've already registered, click here to purchase a ticket.

HilleyMarthaMartha Hilley
has just finished her 35th year on the faculty of The University of Texas Butler School of Music!  During that time, she has served as head of the keyboard division, Associate Director of BSOM and as Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Hilley, as she is called by the majority of her students and many of her colleagues, has been an active participant in workshops, conferences and seminars on the international, national, state and local levels. She has been co-curriculum coordinator for the International Pedagogy Workshops in Italy, Belgium, Norway, Australia and Hawaii and served as pedagogy faculty for the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival in Alaska and Tunghai University's Summer Keyboard Institute in Taichung, Taiwan. She was the 2012 Keynote Speaker and presenter of conference sessions for the Encontro Internacional de Piano ed Grupo in Goiania, Brazil. In 2018 Martha will deliver a keynote address at MET 2018, the Sempre Music-Education-Technology Conference in London.

Her abilities as a teacher were recognized in 1983 when she received the Texas Excellence Teaching Award, and again in 1988 when she was awarded one of four Dad's Association Centennial Fellowships for excellence in undergraduate teaching. In 1992, Professor Hilley was recipient of the prestigious Orpheus Award presented by Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia in recognition of her contributions to the field of music. In 1997, she was awarded the Outstanding Collegiate Teacher Award by the Texas Music Teachers Association and in 1998 was awarded the William David Blunk Professorship in recognition of outstanding undergraduate teaching and research. In 2000, she was chosen for membership in Leadership Texas and was elected in September of 2000 to a three-year term on the Leadership Texas Alumni Board of Directors. Hilley was inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Teachers at UT Austin in 2005 and awarded the Distinguished Service Award from the Music Teachers National Association in the spring of 2008. She was named recipient of the University of Texas at Austin Civitatis Award for 2011-2012. In the summer of 2013 Professor Hilley was named as one of eleven Provost Senior Teaching Fellows university-wide and in March was awarded Music Teachers National Association 2014 Teacher of the Year. Martha was inducted as President-Elect of MTNA at the 2017 National Conference in Baltimore.

Hilley's articles have been published in Clavier, Piano Quarterly and Keyboard Companion. She is co-author of two college piano texts: "Piano for the Developing Musician" and "Piano for Pleasure." The texts were the first to embrace digital sequencer technology through disks furnished to teachers as well as the first to provide web-based computer tutorials, downloadable pdf and mp3 files and dedicated web sites for each text. (http://www.pdmpiano.org and http://www.pfppiano.org)


KernFredDr. Fred Kern was  the Coordinator of Piano Pedagogy and Keyboard Skills and Professor emeritus  at theCollege of Music,  University of North Texas.  He administerd an area with three faculty members, nine graduate Teaching Fellows and over 600 music majors studying piano.  He was previously on the faculties of William Rainey Harper College and Northwestern University.

He is the author, or co-author, of numerous piano methods and volumes of pedagogical publications to which he has contributed original compositions, arrangements and pedagogy curricula. He has been a featured clinician at many state and national conventions and meetings of local teachers groups.

Dr. Kern has also been the conductor of many multiple-piano ensembles and was recently called a “pedagogical pathfinder” in a research document by a California graduate student.  His own doctoral research was on the American piano method and in particular, “The Contributions of Frances Clark to Piano Pedagogy.”  

When he was in college, his diverse experiences included playing percussion in concert wind ensembles and being a member of the drum line in marching bands at Illinois State and Iowa State University.  In 1977 he received an honorable mention at the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, MO and he has subsequently written and arranged many ragtime solos and piano duets for publication.

Dr. Kern is one of piano education’s most respected clinicians, having lead workshops in 36 states across the nation, as well as in Canada (British Columbia-2; Saskatchewan, Ontario-5; New Brunswick; Nova Scotia) and Taiwan.  He is an innovator in teaching music fundamentals of music and pianism with fresh and inspiring perspectives incorporating creative approaches to learning.

He holds degrees in piano performance, music education, and piano pedagogy - Bachelor of Science from Illinois State University; a Master of Music from Illinois Wesleyan University; a Master of Music from Northwestern University and a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Northern Colorado.