Claire Wachter

Claire Wachter's picture
Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy
361 Frohnmayer Music Building
DMA 1993, Piano Performance, University of Texas at Austin
MMus 1977, Piano Performance, University of Texas at Austin
BMus 1975, Piano Performance, Peabody Conservatory
2013 Oregon Community Foundation Award
2012 SOMD Innovation and Creative Research Award
2011 International Steinway Artist
2007 University of Oregon award for on-site visit; Hanyang University (Korea)
2005 Working Partnership Award, International Institute for Young Musicians
1997 Resident Artist Award, Chamber Music; Rome Festival (Italy)
1993 New Faculty Award; University of Oregon
1990 Merle F. Montgomery Award; Mu Phi Epsilon
1979 Finalist, Midland-Odessa National Young Artists Competition; Texas
1979 Alternate Finalist, William S. Boyd National Piano Competition; Georgia
1975 First Prize, JCC Professional Artists Competition; Maryland
1971 Maryland State First Prize & East Coast Division First Prize, MTNA Piano Competition
1970 Finalist, Elizabeth Davis Piano Competition; Washington, DC

Pianist Claire Wachter joined the distinguished roster of International Steinway Artists in June 2011. Wachter has appeared in solo, chamber and concerto concerts throughout the United States and in Austria, Italy, Taiwan, Japan, Canada, Singapore and China. Recent performances include concertos for two pianos with Steinway Artist Dean Kramer and the Eugene Symphony Orchestra and Oregon Mozart Players. Reviews include “….. charismatic performers… they perfectly captured the playfulness, passion, sensitivity and, above all, the joyfulness that this concerto calls for….” And “…This concerto is a tour de force of teamwork…… a formidable feat, which they made look effortless.” Wachter and Kramer have performed two piano recitals in the United States and Finland, as well as Taiwan’s National Recital Hall (2007) and the China’s Qingdao Grand Hall (2011).

Wachter has performed with the Oregon Bach Festival, the Oregon Festival of American Music, the Utah Music Festival, the Rome Festival (Italy) and the Russian River Chamber Music Festival (California). In the Northwest, she has appeared with the Eugene Symphony, the Oregon Symphony, the Oregon Mozart Players, and the DeRosa Chamber Players of Portland.
Wachter has been a collaborative artist in chamber music concerts with members of the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and the Chicago, Philadelphia, Oregon, and Pittsburgh Symphonies.
Wachter has been an invited lecturer and has given master classes at Queen’s University in Canada, Doshisha University in Japan, Fu-Jen Catholic University in Taiwan, the Peabody Conservatory of Music, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, East Tennessee State University, Hood College and Towson State University in Maryland. She was an invited presenter for the American Music/American Women conference in Colorado (1995), the Music Teachers National Association conferences in Dallas (1997), Kansas City, MO (2004), Toronto, Canada with co-presenter Dean Kramer (2007) and an invited panelist for the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Conference at the University of Oklahoma (2008). She is an invited lecturer for MTNA 2012 in New York City. 
For the World Piano Pedagogy Conference Wachter has chaired The Committee on the Future of Piano Pedagogy (2002, 2004) and presented a lecture-recital (2005) In 2004 Wachter was invited to be one of three national MTNA piano judges for the Baldwin and Yamaha piano competitions.  Wachter was a member of the summer piano faculty of the International Institute for Young Musicians (IIYM) at the University of Kansas (2005-2008) and was honored by IIYM’s Working Partnership Award (2005). 
As an author, Wachter’s articles have appeared in numerous magazines, including Piano and Keyboard, Keyboard Companion, Piano Life, The Oregon Musician, The e-Oregon Musician and The Piano Quarterly.
Wachter completed degrees from Baltimore’s Peabody Conservatory of Music and The University of Texas at Austin. Her teachers include John Perry and Julio Esteban. In Europe Wachter studied with Carlo Zecchi (Austria) and Rosa Sabater (Spain).
Wachter has held faculty positions at the University of Texas in Austin (collaborative piano) and the University of the Pacific in California (piano performance).  Presently, she is an Associate Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy and former chair of the piano department at the University of Oregon. Her students have been prizewinners in local, regional and national competitions. 
Selected Publications: 
  • "The 21st Century Piano Teacher" The Oregon Musician e-Journal (Issue 1) (January 2011)
  • "The Master Class Experience and the Moment of Transformation" The Oregon Musician (Vol. 17, No. 1.) Spring pp. 4-7 (2009)
  • News and Views: "What advice do you give to graduating high school seniors?" Keyboard Companion, Spring (Vol. 14, No. 1) pp. 53-55 (2003)
  • Technique: "How do you work with a student who plays everything loudly?" Keyboard Companion, Autumn (Vol. 11, No. 2) p.17 (2000)
  • "The Piano Teaching of Theodore Leschetizky," The Oregon Musician (Vol. 8, No. 1) Winter pp. 4-6 (2000)
  • "A Rolfer Can Tune Your Body," Piano and Keyboard, September/October pp. 22-25 ( 2000)
  • "The Unique Piano Pedagogy of Johannes Brahms," Piano Life, Vol. 3, No. 2 (Greenwich, CT: Excellence in Music, Spring) pp.30-32 ( 1998)
  • "Committee Report: Professionalism Portfolio for the Independent Teacher: Studio Policies," Piano Life, (Greenwich, CT: Excellence in Music, Fall) pp. 34-36 Co-authored with Helen Tarchalski Smith (1998)
  • "Pedal Points," The Oregon Musician Vol. 4, No. 1. Spring 1996 pp. 6-9
  • "The Piano Animal," The Piano Quarterly No. 134 (Wilmington, VT: The Piano Quarterly, Inc., summer) pp. 50-52 Co-authored with Dean Kramer (1986)