The Department of Music hosted Dr. Jessica Koebbe for a guest piano recital on Tuesday night at the Nicholas Martin Hall.
Koebbe is a former Texas Wesleyan professor, according to the program handed out at the event. She played the piano in front of friends, students, faculty, and staff.
Latonya Jordan and Todd Jordan attended the recital to support their longtime friend.
They drove from Aledo to make this possible.
“[We came] to see an old friend, and I knew the music would be really beautiful,” Latonya said.
She described Koebbe as an elegant individual.
“She has a beautiful presence on stage,” Latonya said. “The sound that [comes out of the piano] is just beautiful. I am not a music major so I don’t understand all the music that she is playing, but I know that it is very difficult and she does it so effortlessly.”
Todd said the audience was going to be able to perceive some of Koebbe’s personality through her performance.
“She is very technically proficient, but there is a lot of warmth that comes across when she plays the pieces,” he said. “She is warm, personable, bubbly, energetic. [Koebbe] is a teacher at heart.”
Koebbe played pieces by Gabriel Fauré, Franz Schubert, Catherine Rollin, Claude Debussy, and Franz Liszt. She played the first set of her recital alongside Dr. Ilka Araújo, an associate professor of music.
Dr. Jessica Koebbe and Dr. Ilka Araújo play “Kitty-Valse” from Dolly Suite, Op. 56.
“[Koebbe] has invited me to play the first piece with her: a piece for four hands – two players in one piano called Dolly Suite by Fauré,” Araújo wrote in an email.
Araújo wrote that she and Koebbe have known each other since before she became a part of the Texas Wesleyan family.
“I’ve known her since before I joined Wesleyan through the Fort Worth Music Teachers Association,” she wrote. “We played together and did presentations together. In 2011 she left Fort Worth to pursue her doctoral degree in piano.”
Araújo wrote that they have stayed professionally connected through the years. The idea to have Koebbe as a guest came after she heard about research Koebbe had done on topics she was interested in.
“I heard about her research on Performance Anxiety and How to Become a Mindful Musician, I thought it would be a good opportunity to share this research with our students, who deal with this problem in many activities they do,” she wrote. “[Koebbe] was on campus on February 11th giving a lecture in Martin Hall at 3 p.m., then at 4 p.m. she taught a masterclass to the piano students.”
Michaena Rohn, a freshman music major, found about the recital after attending Koebbe’s lecture on performance anxiety.
“It was a pretty good lecture,” Rohn said. “She talked about on stage anxiety, especially in adults and younger kids. She was giving us a lot of different ways we could cope with it, and I definitely enjoyed it.”
Rohn said she would describe Koebbe’s recital as “energetic, artistic and enjoyable.”
She thought that Koebbe’s piano skills were inspiring.
“I am considering going into double major with piano,” Rohn said. “To see someone that is very passionate about it is very inspiring.”