IMA • Inside the Mind of the Artist

Inside the Mind of the Artist is a series of events — talks, Master Classes, concerts, and even festivals — throughout each academic year designed to enrich the experience of the Conservatory's musical community. For each event, we bring incredible guest artists to share their insights and talents. All IMA offerings are free of charge and open to the public!


Stay tuned for our 2018-19 season announcement coming soon!

ICYMI: Past events from our 2016-17 season

Thank you to everyone who came out to our final IMA of the season, Galactic Visions! OCM Artist-Faculty members Tammy Miller (piano), Yarek Tereshchenko (violin), Melissa Tatreau Holtmeier (violin), Grazzia Sagastume, (viola), and Elizabeth Grunin (cello) performed beautiful repertoire by composer Daniel Baldwin. The performance was also accompanied by stellar visuals of space and the stars to enhance the sound. Daniel Baldwin was also kind enough to share some of his writing process and wisdom with the audience during a Q&A dialogue. See more photos from the recital by clicking here!

7:00pm FRI MAY 4

Thank you to everyone who came out to hear the thrilling performances by pianists Krassimira Jordan and OCM's own Anne Madison this past Friday, April 20, 2018 for our Inside the Mind of the Artist series. The program included repertoire from Leonard Bernstein, Earl Wild, George Gershwin, and Johannes Brahms. The next morning, Krassimira led a master class with some of our piano students! View more photos from the event by clicking here.

7:00pm FRI APR 20 & SAT APR 21

Maestro Hal France with voice student Maddie Smith (Studio of Cody Jorgensen), piano student Alina Hatfield (Studio of Anne Madison), and cello student Alexander Smith (Studio of Tim Strang). See more photos from the event here.

10:30am Sat FEB 17

Mary Carrick, a dynamic and versatile performer with a powerhouse instrument, took us on a journey beyond the music into the realm of storytelling. Drawing from a wide range of influences and voices, Mary featured a collection of reimagined classics and contemporary songs ranging from Cole Porter and Harold Arlen to Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, and Hank Williams. See more photos from the event here!

10:30AM SAT FEB 10

Critically acclaimed violinist Jinjoo Cho has established herself as one of the most vibrant, engaging and charismatic violinists of her generation. OCM was lucky to have this outstanding artist in an electrifying violin recital featuring the music of Britten, Sheng, Chausson, and Fauré. The next morning - six young musicians, selected through an audition process from across the community, participated as performers at the Master Class with Ms. Cho. See more photos from both events here!

Dr. Janka Krajciova
& The World of Czech Music

10:30am Sat SEP 17

Dr. Janka Krajciova, Ayumi Ohishi, and Dr. Elizabeth Grunin present an in-depth performance and discussion on Czech chamber music.

This beautiful selection from Dvorak to Martinu will give you an insight into the mind of the performers as they prepare the music, as well as the unique music characteristics.

A Conservatory Camerata & Orchestra Omaha collaboration
f. Yulia Kalashnikova • PIANO

7Pm SAT oct 1

Block, Dvorak, and Prokofiev each spread their wings on the American frontier, putting their stamp on our musical landscape. Featuring Russian-born Yulia Kalashnikova on Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 1, come hear for yourself how the composers' time in the United States inspired their musical expression.

7Pm fri SEP 23

This Omaha duo is an exciting musical adventure with two artists, Jamie Reimer & Stacie Haneline, who perform literature that taps into the human spirit and mirrors everyday life.

From the sensual journey of love and life through Debussy’s Ariettes Oubliées to the poetic sadness and joy evoked in Enrique Granados' Canciones Amatorias, soprano Jamie Reimer and pianist Stacie Haneline explore their friendship and life’s journey with you for a night of true musical connection.

Passion, color, and exquisite musical language are featured in selections of Schubert Lieder. The evening concludes with Natural Selection, a song cycle by the award-winning American composer Jake Heggie.

Ruth Meints

10:30am Sat oct 8

What are the eight basic skills that every string player develop through daily practice? Originally outlined by Dorothy DeLay, Juilliard's master violin teacher, Ruth Meints will present exercises specifically designed to build these skills within a structured practice routine. Most applicable to violin/viola players Suzuki Book 2 (or equivalent) and above. Parents of beginning students would benefit from hearing the "end game" goals for their young musician as well.

Ruth Meints

10:30am Sat oct 15

If you are...

  • A student who needs help organizing a productive practice session
  • A parent who could use extra tools to work with your child at home
  • fabulous practicer who just wants to enhance an already well-developed practice system


[ Most applicable to students who practice alone or caregivers who practice with their child regularly. ]

10:30AM SAT oct 22

Consistently cited for his “sound imagination” and astonishing power, Markus Groh has confirmed his place among the finest pianists in the world today. Most recently, Mr. Groh has made stunning debuts with both the National Symphony in Washington, D.C. (Brahms Concerto No. 1 in D Minor) and the Cleveland Orchestra (Brahms Concerto No. 2 in B-Flat). In the words of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, “Groh proved exceptionally well-suited to the giant task of Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 2… Not for a second did Groh lose his cool. Instead, he devoured the piece with sparing gestures and the apparent ease of a complete virtuoso.“

This Master Class is made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Gordon H. Mundell in loving memory of Elvira E. García.

9-11am • Carnival
11:15am • Performance

sat Oct 29

Fall culminates with a carnival for students to show off their performance, history, and theory skills to earn their treats! Booths are open from 9am-11am. Fall group classes will top off the day with a concert at 11:15am showcasing strings, voice, and piano ensembles.

Jonathan David Neal & Stephen Hill

9:30-10:15am • SYMPOSIUM (PART 1)
10:30am • COFFEE CHAT
11:30AM-12:15PM • SYMPOSIUM (PART 2)


SYMPOSIUM: Composition students get hands-on advice from our composers-in-residence in a group setting. Students will find ways expand their musical voice during 45-minute sessions with Stephen Hill and Jonathan David Neal.

COFFEE CHAT: Ever wonder what a composer thinks about when they're crafting those haunting melodies? Follow composers Neal and Hill through the process of how they created the beautiful orchestral pieces that are receiving their Nebraska premieres with Orchestra Omaha at 7pm Nov. 12.

10:30AM SAT JAN 21

String players encounter all kinds of shifts in their repertoire and are presented with many challenges in moving around their instrument quickly and accurately. Join Ruth Meints to learn about different types of shifts, when to use them, and how to practice for security in the shifting. If you have learned how to shift, this class would be of benefit to you!

10:30AM SAT JAN 28

Just like our actual voice, the tone of our musical instrument should have variation in depth, mood, and energy. Join Ruth Meints to learn the technical aspects of creating a beautiful tone, and ways to develop a diverse palette of tone colors.

10:30AM SAT FEB 4

Enjoy a five-course audible meal as we explore the ingredients of a recital. Program will feature:

  • Minuet in G by Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Farewell to Cucullain by Fritz Kreisler
  • Sonata for Viola & Piano, Op. 11 No. 4, by Paul Hindemith
  • Reverie by Henri Wieniawski
  • Arioso et Allegro de Concert by Stan Golestan


Soprano Shelby VanNordstrand has appeared as a soloist with a wide range of ensembles and companies; including Lorin Maazel's Castleton Festival, New York Lyric Opera Theatre, Opera Omaha, Omaha Symphony, Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre, Simon Estes Young Artist Program, and the Omaha Chamber Music Society.

Past operatic engagements include Mrs. Nordstrom in A Little Night Music (Castleton Festival), Gretel in Hansel and Gretel (Opera Omaha), Dew Fairy in Hansel and Gretel (Opera Omaha), Paquette in Candide (Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre), Sally in Herman the Horse (Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre), and Cunegonde in Candide (Michigan State Opera Theatre).

Joshua Roman will give a cello master class at the Omaha Conservatory of Music on Feb. 18, 2017

10:30AM SAT FEB 18

Joshua Roman has earned an international reputation for his wide-ranging repertoire, a commitment to communicating the essence of music in visionary ways, artistic leadership and versatility. As well as being a celebrated performer, he is recognized as an accomplished composer, curator, and programmer.

In a multifaceted 2015-16 season, Roman will premiere his own Cello Concerto with the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, and subsequently perform it with ProMusica Chamber Orchestra. In April 2016, he begins a residency with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, as part of which he will perform the Mason Bates Cello Concerto. Roman premiered this work with Seattle Symphony in 2014, and will perform it with various orchestras throughout the 2015-16 season. He will pursue his artistic vision both as Artistic Director of TownMusic at Town Hall Seattle and as Artistic Advisor of Seattle’s Second Inversion. His plans for TownMusic include a presentation of his own song cycle, … we do it to one another, based on Tracy K. Smith’s book of poems “Life on Mars,” with soprano Jessica Rivera. He also continues to perform classics of the repertoire, and in February makes his debut with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra playing Dvorák’s beloved Cello Concerto. 

The Conservatory, in partnership with the Omaha Symphony, invites you to join us Saturday morning as Mr. Roman shares his insights with everyone while working with select Conservatory cello students at this IMA event sponsored by Margot Wickman-Bennett & Ed Bennett.

10:30AM SAT FEB 25

Join Dr. Boban Martic & friends for a special performance and discussion of pieces that became foundations for — and in some cases, their favorites among — a larger professional performance library. Program will feature:

  • Waltzes op.39, No.1, 3, 15, by J. Brahms
  • Rondo Capriccioso, op.14, by F. Mendelssohn
  • Etude No.2 in G minor, op. 72, by M. Moszkowski
  • Scherzo No.2 in B-flat minor, op. 31, by F. Chopin
  • The Boatman (traditional Gaelic melody) arranged by Rhonda Larson, with guest performer Leighann Martic (flute)
  • Hypnosis by Ian Clarke, with guest performer Leighann Martic (flute)
  • Violin Sonata in A major, mvts. III & IV, by C. Franck

This IMA Coffee Chat is sponsored by Sheila Christ & Fred Vakili.

Get a taste of Summer Institute (OCMI 2017). Join us March 3-4, 2017, for Winter Workshop at the Omaha Conservatory of Music.


Hone your musical performance, analytical, and creative skills in this one-day workshop for all instruments. Featuring guest artists from around the country, students will experience a short version of our summer camp!

Sign up!


Conservatory violin alumna Jennifer Ahn, studying at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City, returns to collaborate with Orchestra Omaha and the Conservatory Camarata for a special performance. Program to include:

  • Overture to La Forza del Destino by Verdi
  • Violin Concerto No. 2 in D minor by Henryk Wieniawski

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