Instructors


Faculty

Dr. Colleen Davis, soprano, made her professional operatic debut in 1991 in the role of Giannetta in Donizetti's L'Elisir d'Amore, and appeared as Susanna in Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro with the company that same season. A native of Southern California, Dr. Davis received early training as a dancer, actress, choral singer and musical theater performer before beginning studies as a soloist and choral conductor at Scripps College, graduating with election to Phi Beta Kappa. After earning graduate degrees in music from The University of Iowa, where she sang many leading roles with the Arts Outreach and Opera Workshop programs, Dr. Davis embarked on an active career as a teacher and performer.

Colleen Davis' concert and oratorio roles encompass the range of the lyric soprano repertoire, extending from Bach and Vivaldi, through Haydn, Mozart, Brahms, Dvorak and Mendelssohn to the major works of the 20th-Century. Dr. Davis has performed at the Aspen Music Festival, both in roles with the Opera Theater Center and in recital. An active proponent of contemporary vocal works, Dr. Davis has premiered and performed numerous works by emerging American composers, including Dan McCarthy, Daniel Powers, Carter Pann and John Roscigno. Colleen Davis has appeared as a recitalist in many regions of the United States, and is in demand as a master class teacher and adjudicator of vocal competitions. Named in 1991 by the National Association of Teachers of Singing as one of twelve outstanding young voice teachers chosen nationwide to participate in the first N.A.T.S. Internship Program, Colleen Davis has served on the faculties of Northwestern State University of Louisiana, Cottey College of Missouri, and the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts, and is currently Associate Professor of Music at Indiana State University.

Dr. Davis' voice students have been the recipients of numerous local and regional honors and awards. Recent engagements include the role of Hanna in Haydn’s Die Jahreszeiten and performances of Berton Beerman’s Holocaust-based oratorio, Tikvah with the Chicago Saxophone Quartet.  Colleen Davis lives with her husband, William Davis and their two sons, John and Peter. 

D.M. in Vocal Performance, Indiana University
M.F.A. in Vocal Performance, University of Iowa
M.A. in Choral Conducting, University of Iowa; B.A. Scripps College

Dr. Yang Ding, admired as an exciting performer and piano teacher, is a native of China and prize winner in major international piano competitions. He won the top prize at Los Angeles Liszt International Piano Competition, Cincinnati World Piano Competition, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Concerto Competition, Jacob Flier International Piano Competition as well as New York Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition. In addition, he is a prize winner of New York Five Towns Young Musician Competition, Kansas City Musical Club competition, the Isabel Scionti Piano Scholarship Competition, Hong Kong Chinese Piano Works Piano Competition and Dallas International Piano Competition.  As a solo performer, Dr. Ding has performed throughout the U.S., Korea and China. The venues include Carnegie Hall Weill Recital Hall, Hewlett Woodmere Public Library, NY, Thayer Hall in Los Angeles, Le Petit Trianon Theatre in San Jose, CA, Crighton Theatre at Conroe, Caruth Hall, Dallas, Voertman Hall, Denton, Texas, Cincinnati Arts Museum, Werner Hall and Corbetter Auditorium in Cincinnati, OH, Benaroya Hall in Seattle, WA, Grant Hall and White Recital Hall in Kansas City, MO, Tsuen Wan Town Hall in Hong Kong, and Seoul Arts Center, Korea.

Dr. Ding was invited twice by internationally renowned maestro Vladimir Feltsman to his Piano Summer Festival at SUNY New Paltz. Dr. Ding had a series of recitals in both China and U.S. universities and conservatories as visiting artist, such as University of Cincinnati, University of Missouri at Kansas City, Pittsburg State University, KS, Northern Illinois University, University of Cincinnati, Wright State University, OH and Capital University, OH, Texas Women University, SUNY New Paltz, Indiana State University, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Tianjian Conservatory, Xi’an Conservatory, Shenyang Conservatory, Shanghai East China Normal University, and more. Dr. Ding is frequently invited to judge piano competitions, including twice president of judge committees at First Brandenburg International Piano Competition in China, prescreening audition and First Mexican National Piano Competition for Children, Yamaha National Piano Competition Prescreening audition, Steinway International Piano Competition in China, US Open Piano Competition in China, and The Denton Bach Society Competition for Young Musicians. 

Based on his achievement in music, he was awarded Honorary Citizen of Flower Mound in 2013.  Dr. Ding is currently Assistant Professor at Zhejiang Conservatory of Music in China. He was awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts at the University Of North Texas, the Master of Music from University of Missouri at Kansas City and the Bachelor of Music at Shenyang Conservatory. His teachers include Pamela Mia Paul, Robert Weirich, Eugene Pridonoff, Rosemary Platt and Yuanji Fan.  

D.M. in Piano Performance, University of North Texas
M.M. in Piano Performance, University of Missouri at Kansas City; B.M.
Piano Performance at Shenyang Conservatory

Dr. Janet Palmberg serves as Assistant Chair of the School of Music, Coordinator of the Keyboard Division, Director of Piano Pedagogy, and Head of Music Advisement. A specialist in the teaching of early-level piano students and group piano pedagogy, she teaches piano pedagogy-related courses and class piano. Active as an adjudicator and workshop clinician, Dr. Palmberg has authored articles on piano pedagogy that have appeared in Keyboard Companion, Clavier, the American Music Teacher, and publishers' newletters, including the FJH Piano Adventures newsletter. She has presented sessions at the World Piano Pedagogy Conference, the Retail Print Music Dealers Association National Convention, the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy, state conventions of the Indiana Music Teachers Association, and national conventions of the Music Teachers National Association. 

As an active member of professional organizations, Dr. Palmberg has held many offices, including membership on the Administration/Pedagogy Liaison committee of the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy, Secretary of the East Central Division of the Music Teachers National Association, President of the Indiana Group Piano Teachers Association, and Foundation Chair of the Indiana Music Teachers Association. She was named Teacher of the Year 2000 by the Indiana Music Teachers Association. Dr. Palmberg is a recipient of the Doctorate in Music education and Piano Pedagogy from the University of Oklahoma, the Master of Music in Performance degree from the University of Kansas, and the Bachelor of Music in performance degree from the University of North Texas. 

Ph.D. in Music Education with an Emphasis in Piano Pedagogy, University of Oklahoma
M.M. in Piano Performance, University of Kansas
B.M. in Piano Performance, University of North Texas

Dr. Erik Rohde is the Director of String Activities at Indiana State University. He maintains a diverse career as a conductor, violinist, and educator, and has performed in recitals and festivals across the United States and in Europe. Working extensively with new music, Rohde has conducted and performed many standard and premiered many new works of the 20th and 21st Century. As an advocate for young, relatively unknown composers, Rohde has brought many new works to life through concert and touring, including several works written for him by Jacob Tews, Elliott Miles McKinley, and Peter Farmer.

In his native Minnesota, Rohde has served as the Music Director of the Buffalo Community Orchestra, conductor and violinist for the Contemporary Music Workshop, Camarata Suzuki orchestra conductor for the MacPhail Center for Music, String Ensemble conductor at the Trinity School, and first violinist of the Cantiamo and Enkidu String Quartets. He has taught at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, conducting for the Campus Orchestras and Opera Theatre, in addition to guest conducting appearances with the Symphony Orchestra. He has also performed with the Quad Cities Symphony Orchestra and the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra. Rohde holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Conducting from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, where he studied with conductors Mark Russell Smith, Kathy Saltzmann Romey, and Craig Kirchhoff. He also holds degrees in Violin Performance and Biomedical Engineering. Rohde currently resides in Terre Haute, IN with his wife Erin and their two sons. More at www.erikrohde.com.

D.M.A. and M.M. University of Minnesota
B.M. University of Minnesota

Dr. Beverley Simms is Professor of Music at Indiana State University, where she teaches piano performance, music theory, and piano pedagogy courses. Her degrees include the Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance from the University of North Texas and the Master of Music in Piano Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music.  Her piano teaching experience ranges from young beginners through advanced students, both in private instruction and groups.

Prior to coming to Indiana State University in 1987, she was Director of the Preparatory School of Music at Coker College (South Carolina) for four years. In 2002 Dr. Simms received the “Teacher of the Year” award from the Indiana Music Teachers Association. She was also the recipient of the 2003 Caleb Mills Distinguished Teaching Award from Indiana State University.

Dr. Simms’ teaching is supplemented by extensive professional activity. She has conducted workshops and judged competitions throughout the United States. She also maintains an active career as a piano soloist and chamber musician. Recent performances include lecture-recitals featuring the music of George Crumb and Robert Muczynski at the 2003 and 2004 MTNA national conventions. Her compact disc recording, Cramped Spaces, featuring ISU piano and percussion faculty members, was released in the fall of 2004. 

D.M.A. University of North Texas
M.M. Eastman School of Music
B.M. University of Montevallo

Martha Krasnican is the director of the accompanying program at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana, USA. She graduated with distinction from the Eastman School of Music, where she studied with Brooks Smith, Barry Snyder, and Frank Glazer. After completing her Master’s degree at Eastman, she also worked with John Wustman of the University of Illinois and Menahem Pressler of the Beaux Arts Trio. As a collaborative artist, she has worked with major performers across North America and Europe, including engagements with the Western Horn Symposium and several World Saxophone Congresses.

She has performed as soloist in the Piano Concerto by Vincent Persichetti with the Indiana State University Symphony Orchestra under the direction of the composer. She has also performed as a soloist with the Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra, premiering two piano concertos written for her by her husband, Daniel Powers. In 2005, she was featured on the CD “Spring and Fall,” a compilation of Powers’ chamber works and songs. In February 2007, she performed the complete works of Beethoven for cello and piano with cellist Kurt Fowler. She frequently performs in a piano duo with Beverley Simms, and they are both members of the piano/percussion ensemble Cramped Spaces.

M.M. & B.M. in Piano Performance, Eastman School of Music