Ann Surace

Piano Faculty
Program Area: 
Private Instruction
With Music Institute of Chicago since: 

Ann received her Master's Degree in Piano Performance from Northwestern University, and her Bachelor's Degree in Piano Performance from St. Olaf College.

Significant teachers and mentors: 

Several of Mrs. Surace's biggest influences including the instructors with whom she studied piano pedagogy under such as, Gui Mombaerts, Charlotte Donhowe, and Guy Duckworth.

Teaching philosophy and areas of expertise: 

Ann's teaching philosophy is very telling of how much she loves what she does, and moreover, how much she values what her teachers taught her. She believes that one of the most important things is to prepare piano students for a life-time appreciation of music in college and beyond. In doing this, students will not only have a greater appreciation for what they are able to do, but will also appreciate other performers in a bigger way as well.

Awards and achievements: 

Mrs. Surace has previous church music employment as she was the organist and director of choirs at Zion Lutheran Church in Deerfield, IL for ten years, St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Alabama for 20 years, and organist for Northwestern Lutheran Student Congregation for two years. She has performed in numerous guest appearances in church canatas and oratorios. Ann is currently Director of Music at Christ the King Anglican Church in Evanston.  She sang the soprano lead in the opera, "Wonderland," by Ron Surace and was a winner in the National Association of Teachers of Singers graduate division.  She won Chicago's Farwell Piano Competition.  Many of her piano students have won competitions at the local and state levels as well as college piano and voice scholarships.

Ann has done performances on voice and piano at the Southeastern United States Composers Symposium, 3 AMTA Conventions, the 2015 IMTA Conference, and many other clubs throughout the Chicago area and the Southeast. She has done Chamber Piano Performances with Chicago's Arcturus Trio, and been the accompanist for numerous violinists and singers. She recently performed at the Chicago Cultural Arts Center and the Union League Club.

Additional achievements include: Russian Piano Institute (Gabrielev) Oberlin Piano Institute (Sedmara Ruttstein) Pedagogy workshops too numerous to count.

Professional affiliations & activities: 

Mrs. Surace is involved in NSMTA, AGO, and is the Music Director and Organist at Christ the King Anglican Church, Evanston. She served on piano/theory/string faculties of St. Olaf College, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory, and Jacksonville State University. She also taught pre-college pupils in her private studio when her 2 children were young. Mrs. Surace is proud of a long list of contest and scholarship winners at elementary and college levels in both piano and voice. Her background is enriched by many years of study in violin, clarinet, organ, and voice, with experience in orchestral, chamber, and church music.

Interests outside of music: 

Outside of the music world, Ann enjoys reading, swimming, art, and good food.

Favorite quote: 

"I will study and be ready, and maybe my chance will come."--Abraham Lincoln

Favorite practice tip: 

If you hear mistakes, that is a voice from heaven telling you "You're going TOO FAST!"

Favorite musical moment: 

Hearing Arthur Rubenstein perform a magnificent recital at age 83.