FESTIVAL DIRECTORS

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LUKE RACKERS

Executive Director

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LUKE RACKERS is passionate about new music and helping composers connect with performers, students & listeners. With a Masters of Fine Arts in music composition, he uses his education, experience in music as a performer, composer and educator, and expertise in a variety of music business endeavors, to help composers successfully present their artistic voice to the world. Luke is thoroughly at home in the music industry and loves learning about new ways to help promote and produce new music art works. He performs in a variety of ensembles – including his new music ensemble, Musica Verto Novo, which performs many of the works in the Abundant Silence catalog. He composes primarily for solo piano and small ensemble.

 

Finally, Luke spends much of his time as a recording and audio engineer, helping musicians, filmmakers and others capture high quality audio for their projects. He lives in Montpelier, VT and loves traveling to perform Abundant Silence works and sharing his vision for the organization.

 

ARTHUR HOULE is the founder/artistic director of the Festival for Creative Pianists, a private teacher since the age of thirteen, a critically acclaimed performer, and a published writer, composer, arranger and editor. He has professor emeritus status from Colorado Mesa University, where he earned five Exemplary Faculty Awards. He also taught at the Universities of Iowa, North Dakota and Texas-Austin, College of Idaho, Dana Hall School of Music, and the extension divisions of New England & Boston Conservatories.

 

Houle was Abundant Silence's Featured Composing Educator (2015-2016) and recipient of a Steinway & Sons Top Teacher Award (2019) and Music Teachers National Assoc. Fellow Award (2011). He penned two volumes of Cowboy Jazz (fun pieces for intermediate pianists), published in 2008 and 2015. Later, a lengthy research project culminated in the first-ever definitive edition of Clementi's Sonatinas, Op. 36.

 

Most recently, Houle contributed his scholarship to an equally groundbreaking SuperScore iPad urtext edition of Clementi's Op. 36, co-edited by George Litterst.

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DR. ARTHUR HOULE

Founder/Artistic Director

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Arthur Houle's 1 Page Resume
Arthur Houle's CV
 
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EVELYN BILLBERG

Program Director/Board Member

EVELYN BILLBERG brings close to a half-century of teaching experience to her Denver, Colorado "Keyboard Magic" Teaching Studio. Evelyn received her Bachelor Degree in Music at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. She was involved for ten years in the Fairbanks community performing in theater, Sweet Adelines, the Fairbanks Light Opera Theater, and as a voice major, performing in several operas at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. Later she moved to Arizona where she earned her Masters Degree in Music, Composition and Theory at Northern Arizona University.

 

In 2008, she enthusiastically volunteered to take on significant ongoing tasks in the annual Festival for Creative Pianists. As program director, she inspires everyone with her enduring selfless devotion to and passion for the festival's unique and ever-evolving features.

 

In her role as a dynamic pedagogue, Evelyn is also an active member of the Music Teachers National Association as well as its three local chapters: Denver Area Music Teachers Association, Foothills Music Teachers Association, and Columbine Music Teachers Association.

BOARD MEMBERS

ARTHUR HOULE

Board Member, Festival Artistic Director

EVELYN BILLBERG

Board Member, Festival Program Director

KIMBERLY GRESHAM

Vice President

TONYA RACKERS

Secretary
 

JAMES GRESHAM
Treasurer

Our board of directors, staff, program directors, artistic directors and advisory board members bring in expertise from a variety of musical and organizational backgrounds. If you are interested in volunteering for The Festival for Creative Pianists or joining our team, click here.