Conference Chairs: Ginny Reese and Diane Volkman, NCTM
2023 Keynote Presenters Dr. Jensina Oliver and Dr. Kay Zavislak
Known for her expressive and passionate performances, pianist JENSINA OLIVER has appeared as soloist and chamber musician in the United States, China, Canada, Costa Rica, Israel, and throughout Europe. Her performances with orchestra include appearances with the Hubei Provincial Orchestra of Wuhan, China, as well the Utah Philharmonia, Orchestra of Southern Utah, Intermountain Chamber Orchestra, University of Washington Symphony, and University of Utah Symphony Orchestra. She was a national finalist of the MTNA Chamber Competition, a resident artist at the Banff Chamber Music Festival, and has won several solo and concerto competitions throughout the United States. As a member of Duo Cascadia, Dr. Oliver performs with Dr. Kay Zavislak, exploring a diverse piano ensemble repertoire and concertizing throughout the Pacific Northwest region.
Ms. Oliver has been praised by critics as “highly talented,” with a “steely-fingered” technique and a flair for “panache and drama.” (SL Trib.) “Byington’s command of dynamic phrasing infused each note with elegant intensity in slower passages; in virtuosic sections, she played with assuredness and authority.” Ms. Oliver’s first CD, JENSINA OLIVER performs Chopin, Liszt, Brahms, and Rachmaninoff is available on CDBaby.com. Ms. Oliver earned her Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.) in Piano Performance at the University of Washington under the guidance of Mr. Craig Sheppard and has taught music courses at Shoreline Community College since 1998. As a National Certified Teacher of Music (NCTM), she has a thriving studio with students of all ages. Dr. Oliver travels and teaches around the Pacific Northwest, providing meaningful artistic instruction to students and teachers alike. She currently resides with her family in Seattle, where she is a well-known performer, instructor, clinician, and adjudicator.
American pianist KAY ZAVISLAK enjoys a multi-faceted career as a performer, teacher, adjudicator, and clinician. Spending her formative years in Japan, Dr. Zavislak attended the Toho Gakuen High School of Music, one of the most prestigious conservatories in Japan. Dr. Zavislak then moved to the U.S. and earned the degrees Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, and Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Michigan.
As a performer, Dr. Zavislak has given solo and chamber concerts regionally and nationally, in addition to public performances in Australia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, and Japan. In collaboration with flutist Leonard Garrison and saxophonist Bill Perconti, Dr. Zavislak has also recorded two commercial CDs for Centaur Records. As a member of Duo Cascadia, Dr. Zavislak performs with Dr. Jensina Oliver, exploring a diverse piano ensemble repertoire and concertizes in the Pacific Northwest region. In addition, she is newly appointed as a co-artistic partner for the Bellingham House Concerts Series.
Many of Dr. Zavislak’s university and pre-college students have received top prizes and honors in a number of international and regional piano festivals and competitions, such as Nomea International Piano Competition in Italy, the Memorial “Sanja Pavlovic” International Competition in Serbia, Stage4Kids Festival in Germany, MTNA Northwest Regional Competition, MTNA Washington State Competition, MTNA Idaho State Competition, Seattle Russian Chamber Music Competition, Spokane Piano Competition, Music Fest Northwest in Spokane WA, and Sonata-Sonatina Festival in Ellensburg WA. Some of Dr. Zavislak’s former students have been accepted with a full tuition waiver to Bachelor and Master programs nationally.
Besides teaching, Dr. Zavislak is in high demand for adjudicating, judging, and giving lectures and workshops locally, regionally, and nationally.
Before joining her family in Bellingham WA in 2013, Dr. Zavislak was an Assistant Professor of Piano and the Keyboard Area Coordinator at the University of Idaho Lionel Hampton School of Music. In addition, she has held teaching positions at Albion College, Whatcom Community College, and the University of Michigan. She studied piano under the guidance of Arthur Greene, Logan Skelton, Yoshie Kora, and Miyoko Hamamoto, harpsichord with Edward Parmentier, and organ with Marilyn Mason.