Iowa School of Music 2021-22 Magazine

University of Iowa School of Music 2021-2022 Magazine

Ghadeer Abaido

Doctoral Program, Piano Jordan

(From Left) William Brown & Ghadeer Abaido

Q: Why did you choose to study piano at Iowa? A: I started my music education in Carleton University in Ottawa. I moved back to Jordan in the height of the Arab Spring due to uncertainty about my status in Canada and my family’s status in the UAE. When I moved to Jordan, I was completing my undergraduate studies in piano performance while looking for opportunities to study in Europe or the United States. I happened to meet a musician who studied at the University of South Florida. She connected me with University of South Florida Piano Professor Svetozar Ivanov, with whom I did my master’s. Dr. Ivanov was in contact with Dr. Réne Lecuona at the University of Iowa. He was a huge fan of her playing and teaching, and he recommended that I study with her. After visiting and having a sample lesson with Dr. Lecuona, I knew this is where I needed to be. Q: What’s a favorite Iowa Music memory so far? A: My final recital, Scenes from Childhood, in which I played a program of piano music inspired by childhood themes. I prepared a slideshow to accompany my performance of Robert Schumann’s Kinderszenen. Each movement of the Kinderszenen has a descriptive title, and I had the idea to collaborate with my friends and faculty at the University of Iowa to create scenes from our childhood. I collected pictures of my teachers, my colleagues, and my friends when they were children to use in the slideshow. It was a true collaborative effort, and I felt so connected to the many people I learned from in my time here. It was also great to perform a classical music piece on stage and hear people laugh during the performance.

Q: What has surprised you about your time at Iowa? A: The high level of integrity, professionalism, and work ethic. The faculty at the School of Music have such a high standard for themselves in their teaching, and it carries on to the students. I regularly meet and interact with incredible graduate and undergraduate students who hold themselves to the highest standards. Q: What advice do you have for new Iowa Music students? A: Take advantage of the University of Iowa resources within and outside of the School of Music. This is a time for growth, so don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. It’s also important to offer help when you can. I’ve learned that pursuing excellence doesn’t always have to be in the practice room, and it doesn’t always have to be an individual effort. Q. What are your future plans? A: I did a musical residency at Avaloch Farm this summer with percussionist William Brown. We are a marimba and piano duo, and we specialize in orchestral transcriptions. After graduating, I hope to find a job teaching or accompanying; I enjoy working in an academic environment, and I especially enjoy the opportunity to work with and learn from fellow musicians.


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