News Tidbits: CFMTA conference wrap, new piano book update, summer novel read

1. New book at the printer’s

Exciting news! My newest publication Rock the Boat has been sent to the printer!

Rock the Boat is for Early Elementary piano students, with ten ‘note and rote’ pieces they’ll love. The notation is for early staff readers with lots of opportunity to stretch beyond the limits of reading with some rote playing.

The projected release is late August for the print version, e-Sheets and studio license eBook, so check your email and watch for news. You won’t want to miss it!

I can’t wait for you to hear the pieces in Rock the Boat!

Separate duet files are merged into the original student music files. It is like fitting a puzzle together. There is a lot of editing to a beginner piano book.

With this print run I will also be reprinting six other titles, as my inventory is running very low right now (a great sign…thanks to all the teachers who are teaching my music!). I’m updating all of my cover designs based on the suggestions of Long & McQuade’s Bob Kohl, who gave invaluable ‘music industry’ advice. I’ve been investing a lot of time into this print run and hope to return to my regular blogging soon!

Bonus: Sneak peak of my next book!

My talented graphic artist, Grade 12 student Laura Meisner, has already started work on the cover of my next book for Elementary piano students, Rock this Town. Here’s an early edit of the book cover:

Early design draft of the Elementary book ‘Rock this Town.’

Once Rock this Town is released, it will complete the three-book ‘Rock’ series that will take students on a music journey inspired by popular sounds from Early Elementary (Rock the Boat), Elementary (Rock this Town), through Late Elementary to Early Intermediate (Rock that Train).

2. CFMTA Conference Wrap

This July music teachers from across Canada and North America converged on Winnipeg, Manitoba for the national conference of the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Association. Here’s a zippy little video recap from my camera roll:

Photos from the 2019 CFMTA conference in Winnipeg, ending with the lunch I had at the airport on the way home.

I hung out at the Red Leaf booth in the trade show with Martha Hill Duncan and Susan Griesdale. We had a great time meeting teachers and other tradespeople. At our presentation, we played to a full room representing all 11 Red Leaf Pianoworks composers. Our new releases were Saplings and arrangements of O Canada.

In the trade show I got to know dynamic theory expert Glory St Germain better. Not only was she generous to teachers by sponsoring the coffee breaks, but she became a generous friend who offered me lots of advice on publishing. Here is a spotlight interview she did through her Ultimate Music Theory brand with me and Martha Hill Duncan:

We met a few teachers for dinner and it was nice to relax and spend time together.

Liz Craig said, “The CFMTA conference was a special time to connect with colleagues from across our country. Some I had known growing up, some I had met recently, and some I only knew from online (like Rebekah!). It was great to all be in the same place sharing our experiences and meals together. I enjoyed spending time in my hometown of Winnipeg as well in the beautiful Fort Garry hotel which is walking distance to all the best Winnipeg landmarks, except maybe BDI!” (*BDI stands for Bridge Drive-In, and according to Craig is ‘only the best ice cream place in Winnipeg!’)

Laura Gray said, “Each presentation I attended felt welcoming and the variety kept things fresh, from new piano music, to discovering how to connect with students, creative ideas for teaching young children, contemporary art song, the fascinating discussion on how size does matter, and Dalcroze Eurhythmics which got us all moving at the end of a long day.  The opening Gala Concert was a wonderful showcase of Manitoba’s musical history, featuring piano, vocal, and instrumentalists with strong Canadian connections.  All of this, surrounded by the beautiful Fort Garry Hotel, made for a thoroughly enjoyable conference!”

It was my first time in Winnipeg, so I took time to visit the nearby Canadian Museum of Human Rights. At the museum’s entrance was a statue of Mahatma Gandhi, and further on, a square on the ground measuring the space of Nelson Mandela’s cell in which he spent 27 years. The Mendela exhibit was very moving and was a journey of deep reflection.

I love attending conferences and connecting with other music teachers, composers, publishers and music stores! What is your favourite thing about attending conferences? Feel free to leave a comment in the comment section below.

3. Great novel

The Noise of Time, a novel by Julian Barnes

Julian Barnes’s The Noise of Time is about composer Dimitri Shostakovich at the height of Soviet leader Stalin’s regime. The writing is very compelling, and very much inside the composer’s head. The narrative depicts an artist caught between his desire to produce authentic art and ‘Power’s’ manipulation of the artist’s output for the glory of the state. The dilemma is how to achieve a delicate balance between the two in order to keep one’s life.

This is an excellent read and highly recommended! Have you read any good books that you’d like to share? Feel free to recommend them below in the comments.

4. Are you connected?

Do you follow me on Instagram? It’s a fun way to connect! My handle is simply rebekahmaxner.

Do you follow my Piano at Play blog? With one easy click you can follow by email or on WordPress. Don’t miss a post! You’ll be first to learn of new music releases, upcoming teaching aids and to read my new fall series on teaching strategies and running a successful studio.

Follow my blog to stay connected.

Have you joined Piano Teacher Canada (click here)? We’re a friendly Facebook group for piano teachers from Canada and around the world!

Piano teachers from around the world are invited to join Piano Teacher Canada.

Have You joined Red Leaf Pianoworks Friends (click here)?? It’s a Facebook group for composers around the world plus musicians and piano teachers.

Composers, publishers and piano teachers are invited to join!

Consider this your invitation to stay connected!


Do you like this post and want more? In the side menu click “follow” to get notification of my posts each week in your inbox.

I appreciate shares, comments and likes. Happy teaching!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: