Each spring, the Ohio Music Teachers Association (OMTA) highlights a leader in the organization – a Nationally Certified member who excels as a teacher, serves as a role model, and who volunteers time to our organization. This year, Miriam Brown, has been awarded the 2022 Music Teacher of the Year.
Miriam taught elementary music in Gahanna, Ohio where she incorporated music techniques of Kodaly, Orff and Dalcroze. In total, Miriam taught public school music for 33 years. After she left public school teaching to concentrate on private instruction, she joined OMTA in 2010. Since 2014, Miriam has served as “Out and About” Chairman, organizing volunteer playing opportunities for students at local hospitals, senior living facilities, malls and more.
For the past eight years, she has also served as Vice President of Student Activities for OMTA, helping to bring Pianorama, Scale Olympics and student recitals to the Central Ohio music community. Miriam maintains a piano studio at her home and enjoys teaching students of all ages including adults. She is also a member of the American Harp Society and the National Guild of Piano Teachers.
Miriam earned her Bachelor of Music Education degree (piano major) from Wittenberg University and her Masters in School Counseling from the University of Dayton. While a student at Wittenberg, she began to learn the harp. Now, as a professional harpist, Miriam regularly performs for weddings, corporate events, and private parties in the greater Columbus area. Her long-term engagements have included Franklin Park Conservatory Candlelight Tours, Sunday Brunches at the Hyatt Regency, and she also performs in a flute-harp duo.
Six years ago, Miriam took steps to become a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music (NCTM.) In her Philosophy of Teaching, she wrote: “As a piano teacher, I want to develop musicians, not just piano players. The musical and emotional characteristics of music mirror our own feelings as human beings. A technically, skilled performance, although impressive, can be void of emotion and feeling. We need to learn to play the notes AND play musically… to connect to the heart and soul of the audience; to help students look inside themselves to extract experiences and feelings to create expression and a beautiful work of art.”