The Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) has named Martha Hilley, a professor in the College of Fine Arts’ Butler School of Music at The University of Texas at Austin, their 2014 Teacher of the Year.
The award is the association’s highest recognition of outstanding music teaching. Hilley received the award in March at the MTNA National Conference in Chicago.
“Professor Hilley may be our most frequently honored teacher among the College of Fine Arts faculty, so it was entirely not a surprise that her dedication and effectiveness as a teacher would be recognized by the prestigious MTNA as their Teacher of the Year,” said Douglas Dempster, dean of the College of Fine Arts. “Many generations of UT students have had the benefit of her extraordinary gifts as a teacher.”
Hilley said she was honored to have received the award, which she “accepted on behalf of all group piano and piano pedagogy teachers throughout the country.”
Hilley is professor of group piano and pedagogy and a Distinguished Teaching Professor at the university. She joined the faculty of The University of Texas School of Music in 1982 as coordinator of group piano, later serving as head of the keyboard division and associate director of the school, among other positions. She also served as co-curriculum coordinator for the International Pedagogy Workshops in Italy, Belgium, Norway, Australia and Hawaii.
Hilley’s abilities as a music educator have been well documented. Her awards include the Texas Excellence Teaching Award (1983), a Dad’s Association Centennial Teaching Fellowship (1988), the Orpheus Award from Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia (1993), the William Blunk Memorial Professorship for excellence in undergraduate teaching (1998), induction into the Academy of Distinguished Teachers at UT Austin (2005), and the university’s Civitatis Award (2013).
In addition to her awards, Hilley has published articles in Clavier, Keyboard Companion and Piano Quarterly. She co-authored two college piano texts, “Piano for the Developing Musician” (6th Edition) and “Piano for Pleasure” (4th Edition).