Susanna Garcia has been teaching piano for over 50 years to students of every age and level. She has been an independent music teacher as well as a college professor and has taught in both the group, private, and partner lesson formats.
An active clinician and scholar, she has presented workshops, papers and master classes for International Society for Music Education, College Music Society, Music Teachers National Association, National Association for Humanities Education, National Group Piano/Piano Pedagogy Forum, Online Learning Consortium, Frances Clark Center for Keyboard Pedagogy, Louisiana Music Teachers Association, and many state and local piano teaching organizations. Her research has appeared in such publications as 19th Century Music, Interdisciplinary Humanities, Piano Pedagogy Forum, Philosophy of Music Education Review, and American Music Teacher.
A native of Corpus Christi, TX, she has performed both solo and chamber recitals throughout the United States, and in Canada, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Ghana, and has been featured on radio and television.
She performs regularly with pianist William Chapman Nyaho as the Nyaho/Garcia Piano Duo, specializing in both the standard repertoire and newly composed works for piano duo and duet. They released their first CD of Aaron Copland’s two-piano works on Centaur Records (1998) to critical acclaim. Reviews called this recording “the standard against which any future performances of these dances will be measured.” Their recording has been featured on the British Broadcast Corporation Radio Network program “Desert Island Discs,” a program recommending recordings one would wish to have if shipwrecked on a desert island. The Nyaho/Garcia Duo was featured at the 2021 MTNA Virtual Conference.
The Duo’s newest release Five by Four (2022) on MSR Classics (2022) includes contemporary music for piano duo including four world premiere recordings. Fanfare Magazine writes: “This is such a wonderfully natural piano recording… I can’t get over how spectacularly Nyaho and Garcia play, nor what marvelous music they have found. What a terrific album this is!”
Dr. Garcia has served in leadership roles for Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), National Group Piano/Piano Pedagogy Forum (GP3), Louisiana Music Teachers Association (LMTA), and the Lafayette Area Music Teachers Association (LAMTA). She serves on the Board of Trustees for the Frances Clark Center for Keyboard Pedagogy and was co-chair of MTNA’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) conference track for their national conferences in 2022 and 2023.
Garcia received her undergraduate education at Texas A&M at Corpus Christi. She completed both her MM and DMA at the University of Texas at Austin where she had the privilege of studying pedagogy with Verna Harder, Amanda Vick Lethco, and Martha Hilley. Her piano teachers have included Imelda Delgado, Meryl Ettelson, Gregory Allen, and Danielle Martin.
In May 2021, after 31 years, Garcia retired from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where she held the Louisiana Board of Regents/Ruth Stodghill Girard Endowed Professorship in Music. During her tenure there she taught piano, group piano, piano pedagogy and lectured in the Interdisciplinary Humanities program. She directed the Pedagogy Lab Program, an internship program for piano pedagogy students. She has been the recipient of many honors including the University of Louisiana Distinguished Professor Award (2001), Music Teachers National Association Foundation Fellow (2012), Louisiana Music Teachers Association Outstanding Teacher (2013), and the University of Louisiana College of the Arts “Research Excellence Award” (2015). She holds the rank of Professor Emerita of Music.
Garcia is the co-developer of eNovativePiano: Multimedia Resources for Developing Musicianship Skills, which in 2021 was awarded the MTNA- Frances Clark Award for Keyboard Pedagogy.