Brian Chung workshop

Join us for a “Classical Improvisation” Workshop with Brian Chung at Schmitt Music Edina – Tuesday, July 22 at 10:30AM.

Classical pianists wanting to explore improvisation are usually advised to study jazz. But couldn’t they learn in the classical style? This session will offer a fun and systematic approach to improvisation for the classical pianist. Please join us for this FREE WORKSHOP!

Brian Chung is Senior Vice President of Kawai America Corporation. With a diverse career that includes experience as a performer, arranger, teacher, author, conference speaker and music industry executive, he is devoted to the cause of advancing music participation across America.

Seating is limited, so please let us know you’re coming! Call 612-238-9930 or to RSVP online.

Session Concept:

The process of learning to talk is very similar to that of learning to improvise. In both disciplines, the learning process begins with the desire to say something personal and meaningful. This is the heart of improvisation. Learning to improvise is not just the acquisition of formulas that help a player add more notes to a melody or add a flourish here and there. While it will allow the player to do these things, it is really much deeper. Learning to improvise is the process of acquiring tools that will allow the player say something musically in one’s own words.

Everyone improvises to some degree. Whistling a new melody while doing a chore or humming a slightly different rendition of a familiar tune are examples of improvisation. But the concept is still quite “foreign” to many players, even to expert musicians. It is often frustrating for some to be so highly skilled as interpreters of classical music, but so limited as improvisers. Why is it so difficult? It is because classical musicians have exercised a particular set of mental “muscles” in the traditional school. Improvising requires the development of different mental muscles. Once these new muscles are sufficiently exercised, new abilities appear that will dovetail with one’s existing skills.

Brian Chung Biography:

Brian Chung is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Kawai America Corporation. He is a two-term president of the Piano Manufacturers Association Interna-tional, a former Chair of the Board of Trustees for MTNA Foundation, a 2004 MTNA Foundation Fellow, a past member of the Board of Directors for NAMM (the International Music Products Association), co-author of Improvisation at the Piano: A Systematic Approach for the Classically Trained Pianist (Alfred Publishing 2007) and author of Expressions of Faith: Eight Inventive Explorations of Classic Hymns for Solo Piano (Alfred Publishing 2008).

Mr. Chung has an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from the University of Michigan, where he combined his musical and business interests. In addition to performing in the top jazz band at Michigan, he spent summers as a pianist and musical director at Walt Disney World. After college, he traveled to London, England to study piano and conducting at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama as a Rotary Foundation Scholar. Upon his return to the States, he was privileged to pursue jazz studies as the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment of the Arts.

After several years as a professional musician and independent piano teacher, he continued his business education by completing a Master of Management Degree at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. His business pursuits eventually led him to Kawai America Corporation, where he has spent the past twenty years.

With a diverse career that includes experience as a performer, teacher, arranger, author, conference speaker and music industry executive, Mr. Chung is devoted to the cause of advancing music participation across America.


Emily Bear at the Dakota


Emily Bear is a 12 year-old pianist and composer who enjoys performing both classical and jazz repertoire, as well as her original compositions. Emily has performed with orchestras in the U.S., Europe and Asia, at such venues as Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl, and she recently released her first studio album, Diversity, produced by her mentor and friend, Quincy Jones. The album peaked at #3 on Billboard’s Traditional Jazz Albums chart.

Don’t miss Emily’s performance at The Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis on Sunday, June 8 at 7:00PM!

CONGRATULATIONS to Isla Law, Matt Nicoloff, Dawn Vandenheuvel, and Michelle Prosch – they each won a pair of tickets to Emily’s show this Sunday at The Dakota!

Learn more and buy tickets at the Dakota’s website:

Watch Emily perform Schumann’s “Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54″ with the Santa Fe Concert Association on Dec. 24, 2012:

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Twelve year-old Emily Bear is one of the most astonishing musical talents of our time; composing, orchestrating, and performing in a diverse collection of styles. A child of this century, born Aug. 30, 2001 in Rockford IL, where she lives with her parents and older brother and sister, Emily started to show talent from the cradle. She started playing the piano at age 2, and by the age of 6, she had played on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, and performed at the White House for President Bush. By the time she was 8 she had composed more than 350 pieces of her own music. Emily’s first studio album, Diversity, produced by her mentor and friend, legendary Quincy Jones was released in 2013 and peaked at #3 on Billboard’s Traditional Jazz Albums chart.

Visit Emily’s website to learn more:


Refer-a-Friend Summer Music Lesson Offer at Schmitt Music!

Do you take lessons at Schmitt Music? This summer, help a friend discover the joy of music-making and you could both WIN A $50 SCHMITT MUSIC GIFT CARD!

• Get a friend to sign up for lessons at Schmitt Music, and their registration fee will be waived

• You and your friend will be entered to win a $50 Schmitt Music gift card

• Referral must be registered by August 31

Visit your Schmitt Music store to learn more about this special offer, and sign up for summer music lessons today!

Now through August 31, whenever a student signs up for private (one-on-one) lessons, that new student can get free lesson registration (a $30 value), as long as they have a friend currently enrolled in music lessons. New students just need to mention this promotion and give the name of their referring friend.

Both the new student and the referring student will be entered to win a $50 Schmitt Music Gift Card (one pair of gift cards per participating store). New students who enroll while taking advantage of this promotion can also refer friends, after their first lesson is complete.

The more friends you refer, the more chances you have to win!

Please contact your Schmitt Music store and ask a Sales Associate for further details. Offer available in-store only; online lesson registration fees will not be waived. Visit your Schmitt Music store today!


MAS presents Songwriting Workshop with Johnsmith at Schmitt Music Edina

The Minnesota Association of Songwriters proudly presents a “Songwriting Workshop Series” at Schmitt Music stores in the Twin Cities:

Join us at Schmitt Music Edina for a great songwriting workshop with Johnsmith, Wisconsin-based singer-songwriter, on Saturday, June 21 from 1:00PM to 5:00PM.

John’s career includes six solo albums and more than 150 annual concert dates. A winner of the New Folk competition at the Kerrville Folk Festival, he has also won songwriting awards at the Telluride, Rocky Mountain Folks, and Falcon Ridge Folk Festivals. He has taught workshops nationwide, including at California’s Esalen Institute, and has been a staff writer in Nashville.

Admission: $25 at the door. Please RSVP to save your spot: call 612-238-9930 or to fill out the online RSVP form.

JohnsmithAt a time when national fame, fortune and reputation are often awarded to performers of pedestrian and limited talents and abilities, it is wholly refreshing to encounter an artist whose work – often grossly under-recognized – possesses a genius that cannot be denied, ignored or overlooked. Johnsmith is one such artist; a gifted singer-songwriter, moving performer and roaming troubadour.

Above all else, Johnsmith is a Bard. The role of the Bard in every society is to hold up a mirror to that society, to convey and reveal – through the mysterious alchemy of music and words and performance – the secret inner language of the heart – delivered with that ineffable feeling called ‘Soul’.

John possesses these gifts in abundance. His song-lyrics are finely shaped and powerfully moving (this writer was moved to tears on first hearing – and meeting – John in my home some years back, when he sang ‘Iris Blue’; an unforgettable moment for me!) and voiced with a spirit and soulfulness that is earned through the embracing of the joys and the pains of a life (both physical and spiritual) lived to the full.

Each of John’s albums to date (especially his most recent, the truly superb and to my mind, his finest work, Gravity of Grace) seek to explore and develop his unique vision as a wordsmith and his undeniable talent as a musician. As always, John’s musical journey takes the listener in to the heart of what matters to him as an artist.

As always, his songs deliver an honest and sensitive account of the way-moments of a keenly observed life-journey and his inner impulse to reflect upon and celebrate the mystery of that journey with fierce truth, great sensitivity and tenderness, and, above all, ( to quote the title song of his latest album) the ‘gravity of grace’.

Visit to learn more about Johnsmith.

JohnsmithThe Minnesota Association of Songwriters is a volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating the art of creating original music by combining arts, education and community outreach – CELEBRATING 20 YEARS: 1994-2014!

The M.A.S. “Songwriting Workshop Series” will include events in August and October 2014, and one in June 2015. CLICK HERE to view the series informational flier.

Learn more about the Minnesota Association of SongwritersCLICK HERE.


Glee Club Vocal Workshop with Wendy Zaro-Mullins

Schmitt Music and the Minnesota Concert Opera present “The Glee Club” Vocal Workshop!

Join us at Schmitt Music Brooklyn Center for an exciting afternoon of singing with singer, actress and professor of voice, Dr. Wendy Zaro-Mullins on Saturday, May 24 at 2:00PM – FREE!

The television program “Glee” has had a tremendous response resulting in more students wanting to sing and communicate their feelings through song than ever in our history. Now, by popular demand, Schmitt Music is bringing back to their Brooklyn Center store, Wendy Zaro-Mullins, for her second workshop in two years.

This vocal workshop will be geared for the young singer, 14-18, who is excited and charged with wanting to let go more in song. Questions such as: How much do I move? How do I gain more control and become less nervous? How do I belt healthy? Students will work in group activities as well as individually. All styles of singing are welcome (classical art song, musical theater, jazz, etc). Topics include:

  1. Breathing, Posture and resonance for singing.
  2. Diction that carries.
  3. “How to Really Learn a Song” the right way.
  4. “Legato Mapping”. Learning a true legato line.
  5. Appropriate repertoire for the young singer and what to use for auditions.
  6. Vocal Registers and how to negotiate them.
  7. Classical vs. Musical theater technique.
  8. Jazz and improvisational techniques.
  9. Microphone technique vs. acoustical singing.
  10. Relaxation techniques.
  11. Vocal health.
  12. How to Audition for colleges, universities and conservatories and the difference amongst these schools.
  13. What to expect from a degree in music and what happens after college.
  14. What is a career in singing really about?
  15. The “Glee” factor.
Please RSVP to this event: or call 763-398-5050.

Wendy ZaroSoprano Wendy Zaro-Mullins has performed for audiences in Europe, Taiwan, and South and North America. At home on opera, music theatre, and concert stages, Zaro’s credits include San Francisco Opera, American Opera Center, and Eugene Opera. Zaro has performed: Fiordiligi (Cosi fan tutte), Susanna (Susanna), Mother (Amahl and the Night Visitors), Belinda (Dido and Aeneas), Mimi (La Boheme), Mrs. Nolan (The Medium), Pitti-sing (The Mikado), and Olga (The Merry Widow). Zaro’s concert work includes solo appearances with symphonies throughout the country and abroad: Verdi Requiem with the Wyoming Symphony and Chorus, Mahler’s Second Symphony with the Wichita Symphony and Chorus, Brahms’ German Requiem with the University of Missouri-Columbia Symphony and Chorus, Britten’s War Requiem with the St. Joseph Symphony and Chorus of Missouri, Verdi’s Requiem Mass, and Barber’s Summer of Knoxville, 1915, Mendelssohn’s Psalm 42 with the Paraguayan National Symphony and Orchestra.

Zaro premiered an American debut of Gorecki’s Symphony No. 3 with the University of Kansas Symphony Orchestra. Amongst the musical theatre roles she has played include Lady Thiang (The King and I), Maria and Antonia (The Man of La Mancha), and Iris (The Tempest) with the Eugene Musical Theatre, Sacramento Music Circus and Mark Taper Forum. Zaro earned bachelor and master degrees from the University of Southern California, and her doctorate from the University of Oregon in vocal performance. Zaro has done extensive research on the Jugendlieder of Alban Berg and has been the first to record all 48 songs of his youth. Zaro is currently an Associate Professor of Voice at the University of Minnesota and is on the faculty at Normandale College. As an engaged artist in the community, Zaro has created the Twin Cities Sacred Vocal Workshop where students from her voice studio and community members engage in mutual learning and understanding of the needs of Sacred Vocal Music in the greater Minneapolis/St. Paul area.

Learn more about Dr. Wendy Zaro-Mullins – CLICK HERE to view her U of M faculty profile page.

Visit the Minnesota Concert Opera website to learn about upcoming performances –


Kawai piano instant rebates in May

Instant Rebates from Kawai are EXTENDED!

Visit your Schmitt Music store today and get INSTANT FACTORY REBATES on a wide selection of new Kawai acoustic and digital pianos! The “Spring for a Kawai” Instant Rebate Program has now been extended through May! Purchase an eligible Kawai grand or upright acoustic piano, or digital piano before May 31, 2014, and you’ll get UP TO A $1,000 INSTANT REBATE!

Contact your Schmitt Music Piano Specialist today and set up a personal showing. You’ll see and hear why Kawai pianos and the choice of those who know!

CLICK HERE to find your Schmitt Music Piano Specialist!

Find SUPER SAVINGS on Kawai acoustic and digital pianos, and much more – visit your Schmitt Music store today!

Our goal is to reduce inventory levels by the end of our fiscal year on May 31, so we’ve scoured our inventory and generated some amazing savings – some of these deals are one-of-a-kind offers!

Find huge savings on clearance and closeout pianos, including fantastic acosutic grand and vertical pianos, and feature-packed digital pianos.

SAVE 33% OFF MSRP on a Kawai K-3 Professional Upright acoustic piano, plus get an instant rebate!

You can also get UP TO 37% OFF MSRP on closeout Kawai RX Series acoustic grand pianos, plus get an instant rebate!

CLICK HERE to learn more about our “Fiscal Year-End Clearance Sale” or visit your Schmitt Music store today.


Fiscal Year-End Clearance Sale


Schmitt Music’s goal is to significantly lower our inventory by the end of our fiscal year on May 31, and that means “Super Savings” for you! We have scoured our inventory and generated some great savings – many of these deals are one-of-a-kind offers – HURRY IN TODAY!
Visit your Schmitt Music store today and save up to 37% OFF MSRP on closeout acoustic & digital pianos from Kawai and Roland, save thousands on Steinway pianos, up to 65% OFF MSRP on clearance guitars & amplifiers, 75% OFF on select clearance print music & accessories and more!
Fiscal Year-End Clearance Sale offers are good only while supplies last, now through May 31, 2014.  CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE!
Learn more about our “Super Savings” clearance sales in Colorado and Kansas: Schmitt Music Denver and Schmitt Music Kansas City.

Graduate to Yamaha

OFFER VALID NOW through JUNE 30, 2014

Now is the time to GRADUATE TO YAMAHA and upgrade from a intermediate or beginner instrument to a Professional or Custom Yamaha instrument: Piccolo, Flute, Clarinet, Oboe, Bassoon, Saxophone, Trumpet, Cornet, Flugelhorn, Trombone, French Horn, Alto Horn, Baritone Horn, Euphonium or Tuba.

When you purchase a qualified model, you can get a mail-in REBATE of $100 – just purchase before June 30, 2014. Call your Schmitt Music store today and make an appointment with a Band Instrument Specialist!

CLICK HERE for additional details on


Shell Lake Arts Center Summer Music Camp, Win a Scholarship

You Could Win a Summer Music Camp Scholarship!

Are you serious about taking your playing to the next level? Would you like to study with incredible musicians for free? Schmitt Music and McNally Smith College of Music are excited to offer a chance to WIN A FULL SCHOLARSHIP to attend your choice of a Summer Music Camp at the Shell Lake Arts Center in Wisconsin this summer – A $565 VALUE!

Get details and enter to win @
ENTER BY MAY 16th! (Must be 15-18 years old to enter)

Camps are available June 15 through August 8, including: Jazz Improvisation, Guitar & Bass Workshops, Extreme Strings, Trumpet, Trombone, and Sax Workshops, Rock Band, Show Choir and more! Click here to learn more about the Shell Lake Arts Center in Shell Lake, WI.


Bag sale, print music deal

Print Music BAG SALE at Schmitt Music Brooklyn Center!

Visit us today at Schmitt Music Brooklyn Center and take advantage of amazing savings on a huge selection of print music. You’ll get all the print music you can fit for JUST $20only while supplies last!

Our “clearance” selection includes music for band instruments and strings, piano, piano solos, piano duets, guitar, vocal/piano/guitar, as well as Instrumental Music, DVDs & more!
Here’s how it works:

• Use one of the provided plastic Schmitt Music bags and fill it with great music books and sheet music from our “clearance bins” – don’t break the bag!

• Bring the bag with your selections to the sales floor where a Sales Associate will help you check out

• To speed up your checkout, please let the Sales Associate start the process while you finish your print music or other shopping!

Questions? Contact Bonnie, Print Music Specialst at Schmitt Music Brooklyn Center for details!

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