Department of Music
Piano and Organ Studies

Dr. Lara West, Ms. Michelle Rautmann, Mrs. Laura Goehner-Moreno

The development of musicianship skills is primary to the study of piano and organ at Benedictine College.  A program of study is formulated, according to the students’ current level of ability, to develop increased skills in sight reading and technique.  Students are guided in the interpretation of specific styles and particular performance practices appropriate for the literature of the instrument.  Students perform works from all periods of music history and have the opportunity to perform frequently in student recitals.  Pianists increase their musicianship skills through accompanying vocal and instrumental students on student recitals and special events.

Lessons for organists are taught on the Abbey Church organ.  Two practice organs are available in the music building as well as the opportunity to practice on local church organs.  Keyboard students also participate in chamber music on campus and receive coaching for collaborative piano activities.
Piano and organ studies are guided by a few important principles:

  • Development: There is a commitment to the development of technique through various etudes, exercises and a commitment to daily sightreading.
  • Literature: The student will be guided to learn a large body of music representative of the important historical periods for the instrument and a demonstrated understanding of those various styles.
  • Performance: The student will perform the literature representative of the performer’s level of musicianship in a variety of venues.
  • Listening: The instructors encourage the development of listening skills and the application of these listening skills to personal performance practice.  This is achieved by listening to professionals, colleagues and most importantly, to ourselves as performers.

Learn more about auditions and scholarships.