The Jane Frazee Distinguished Scholar-Artist Series
The 2020 distinguished scholar-artist is Dr. Vanessa Cornett-Murtada, Director of Keyboard Studies and Associate Professor of Music at the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN..
Date & Time:
1:00 PM - 4:30 PM
University of St. Thomas
Woulfe Alumni Hall, Anderson Student Center
2115 Summit Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55105
The 2020 distinguished scholar-artist is Dr. Vanessa Cornett-Murtada, Director of Keyboard Studies and Associate Professor of Music at the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN.
The Counterculture of Contemplative Education
Mindfulness is a counterculture in a society that values busyness and burnout as indicators of success and status. Teachers and students alike are more distracted, divided, and overcommitted than any generation before. Fortunately, our greatest resource is how we choose to direct our attention at any given time. Contemplative education is a philosophy of teaching that integrates introspection and experiential learning to develop awareness and self-understanding, to help students learn who they are, search for larger purpose for their lives, and become fully actualized human beings. Leaders in this growing field envision an education that facilitates the realization of our connection to each other, opening the heart and mind to true community, deeper insight, sustainable living and a more just and compassionate society. Although mindfulness is a recent and popular trend in Western culture, it is frequently misunderstood and oversimplified. In this seminar we will explore the research on the benefits of mindfulness, strategies for implementing contemplative pedagogy in the music classroom, and applications of mindfulness to manage performance anxiety and strengthen music-making skills. We will emphasize accessible, informed and inclusive mindfulness practices that encourage social connection, self-determination and more joyful and transformative musical experiences.
Vanessa Cornett is the Director of Keyboard Studies and Associate Professor of Music at the University of St. Thomas. A founding member of the St. Thomas Project for Mindfulness and Contemplation, she also serves as a faculty liaison for the Center for the Common Good. Author of the book The Mindful Musician: Mental Skills for Peak Performance, she has also published in the Journal of Transformative Education, Journal of Undergraduate Neuroscience Education, College Music Symposium, American Music Teacher, MTNA eJournal, Clavier Companion, The Canadian Music Teacher, and in the textbook Creative Piano Teacher (4th ed). She has offered lectures, masterclasses and workshops across North America and in the U.K., Finland, Ireland, Serbia, Croatia, Greece, Turkey, Ukraine, Argentina, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. She earned the DMA degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the MM and BM degrees from West Virginia University. She is a licensed hypnotherapist and certified meditation instructor with additional training in sport psychology and trauma-sensitive mindfulness practices. Her research interests include contemplative practices in higher education and the performing arts, the intersection of cognitive psychology and mindfulness, and mental skills training for musicians.