Associate Teaching Professor, Collaborative Pianist
To say that pianist Patricia Higdon leads an active career as a chamber musician, teacher, and coach is an understatement. Immediately after completing graduate work at the Cleveland Institute of Music, she began working as coach/accompanist with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and subsequently joined the faculty of the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance. Each season she plays dozens of recitals with faculty, graduate students, and acclaimed artists from around the world. Her coaching and collaborations have played significant roles in the impressive accomplishments of numerous students and young professionals, many of whom with which she partners to success as finalists or winners of national and international competitions. In 1995, she received the Conservatory’s Muriel McBrien Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award. She is also in constant demand as a pianist for master classes and recording sessions. Higdon has performed with the world-class Kansas City Chorale and can be heard on two of its critically acclaimed recordings, Fernhill and Words and Music.
Higdon’s early work with vocalists has served to provide her with a lyrical sensitivity to the instrumentalists with whom she now specializes in playing. In 2000, she joined coloratura soprano Rebecca Sherburn and flutist Mary Posses to form the Aurora Trio, and recently formalized a longtime professional collaboration with flutist James Hall as the Hall/Higdon Duo, which has been enthusiastically received in its rapidly growing schedule of recitals and in November 2004 the Duo made its Carnegie Hall debut. In 2003, she added a position as keyboardist of the Chamber Music Society of Kansas City to her long list of activities.