Brad Beckman is originally from Harvard, Illinois, and received his bachelor of music degree from Illinois Wesleyan University in 1986. While at IWU Dr. Beckman received numerous competitive scholarships, was Honors Recitalist, and was selected for Pi Kappa Lambda membership. Continued study with Joseph Banowetz brought Dr. Beckman to the University of North Texas in 1986 where he earned both a master of music degree and a doctor of music degree in Piano. While at UNT Dr. Beckman held a competitive Teaching Fellowship in Piano and received the Mary M. Morgan Dissertation Award for Excellence in Music Performance for his work on Ronald Stevenson's Passacaglia on DSCH. Dr. Beckman is currently Senior Lecturer in Piano and Assistant Group Piano Coordinator at the University of North Texas. He teaches Piano Pedagogy, Keyboard Skills classes and is faculty advisor for the UNT/TMTA Collegiate Student Chapter. He also maintains a private studio at the Hockaday School in Dallas. Dr. Beckman has performed throughout the Midwest, is a frequent adjudicator and has contributed to Keyboard Companion Magazine regarding the teaching of adult students. He has been active in Texas Music Teachers Association as Presenter, Performance Contest Coordinator, Elected Director, past President of the Plano Music Teachers Association. TMTA chose Dr. Beckman as their Collegiate Teacher of the Year in 2010. Dr. Beckman is a frequent performer throughout the Midwest and has performed at the State Department in Washington, D.C., as part of the State of the Arts concert series where his playing was described as "sensitive, well constructed and erupting in a flood of emotions..." State Magazine, Washington, D.C. He also performs regularly with two-piano partner, Dr. Carolyn True of Trinity University and has recently released their first CD together entitled Bradley Beckman and Carolyn True 2. Dr. Beckman is a member of the College Music Society, European Piano Teachers Association and the American Liszt Society.
Hailed as “an artist with commanding technique, always at the service of the music and capable of taming any tigers the composer has unleashed” (Windeler, San Antonio Express News), Carolyn True is a pianist equally at home on the concert stage and in the teaching studio. A member of the music faculty of Trinity University, True teaches individual lessons, accompanying, piano ensemble, piano literature, piano pedagogy, and other related courses. She walks the delicate balance between teaching in San Antonio, giving workshops, master classes, seminars, and adjudicating and actively performing as soloist and chamber musician in the United States, Europe, and Asia. A compassionate and challenging professor, True is carrying on the family tradition. In 2000, True was recognized as the Texas Music Teachers Association’s Collegiate Teacher of the Year and in 2010 was awarded the highest honor to a faculty member at Trinity University – the Dr. and Mrs. Z.T. Scott Faculty Fellowship award.
Dr. True holds the prestigious Performer’s Certificate and the D.M.A. degree from the Eastman School of Music, an M.M. from the University of Maryland-College Park, and the B.M. from the University of Central Missouri (where in 2001, she was chosen as the Pi Kappa Lambda Distinguished Music Alumna) and was a prize winner in national and international competitions. She was also the recipient of a Rotary Foundation Scholarship for study at the Conservatoire National de la Musique in Lyon, France.
The CD, Carolyn True 1, features works of Ligeti, Bach/Brahms, Beethoven, and Bennett. Her second CD with her duo piano partner- Bradley Beckman (with works of Barber, Bernstein, and Piazzolla) was released in Jan 2011. She has edited two volumes of intermediate piano works by Starer (Sketches in Color) and Milhaud (A Child’s Loves).
In addition to her solo and duo work, she is a core member of the SOLI Chamber Ensemble, the resident chamber ensemble of Trinity University. Their mission is to promote contemporary music to audiences of all ages. SOLI has commissioned numerous fine works, most notably from composers Heuser, Gardner, Kramer, Rodriguez, and Rorem.