Atlanta pianist Nancy Elton has received critical acclaim for her performances as a solo recitalist, concerto soloist and chamber musician throughout the southeast and many areas of the U.S. Hailed as "...an artist capable of amazing fire and brilliance as well as being possessed of the most graceful sensitivity and delicacy...a dazzling pianist to say the very least", (The State and Columbia Record, SC), she maintains an active performing and teaching schedule. A highly sought teacher in the Atlanta area, she has served on the piano faculties of the University of Georgia and Georgia State University, and has had numerous awarding winning students through the years.
Her piano performances have included concertos with the Columbia Philharmonic Orchestra and Florence Symphony Orchestra in South Carolina; two performances with the Coastal Symphony Orchestra in St. Simon’s, GA; the Musica Sacra Orchestra at First Presbyterian Church; the Buckhead Youth Orchestra, and the Dekalb Symphony Orchestra performing standard concerto repertoire such as Beethoven’s 3rd, the Grieg Concerto, Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody, Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and the Liszt Concerto in Eb and the Haydn Concerto. She has performed solo recitals in venues across the country that include college and university campuses, music festivals, conferences, community concert series, churches, and various other concert series. Concerts this Spring include recitals at Winthrop University, Reinhardt University, Lynn University in Boca Raton and church and community concerts in the Atlanta area and in South Carolina. Nancy has also presented solo recitals, lecture performances and adjudicated for many organizations, including the American Matthay Society for Pianists, the Liszt Society, the World Piano Pedagogy Conference, Georgia Music Teachers Assoc, the Georgia Music Educators Association, the ProMozart Society, the Steinway Society and many others.
Nancy received the Doctorate and Masters of Musical Arts Degrees from the University of Texas in both piano and vocal performance, and the Bachelor of Musical Arts Degree from the University of South Carolina, also in piano and voice. Her primary piano teachers and mentors are John Perry, John Kenneth Adams at USC; and Frank Mannheimer, private study; and in voice the distinguished singer Bethany Beardslee.
In addition to her piano activities, Nancy has performed as an opera singer in leading roles with the Atlanta Opera Studio and Phoenix Opera Company of Atlanta; and as a solo song recitalist and oratorio soloist. A highlight of her vocal study was being selected by famed soprano Elizabeth Schwarzkopf, to participate in a German Lieder Workshop, and also having the opportunity to sing Schubert lieder with now famed pianist Richard Goode. Another highlight was a performance with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for a youth concert, in which she was the featured soloist singing Rossini’s famous aria “Una voce poco fa”.
Having been involved in choral and church music all her life, she has an extensive oratorio repertoire as soprano soloist, and has served as a staff singer and soloist for many years at several churches. As an accompanist and chamber musician, she has collaborated with most every instrument there is, as well as many singers through the years. She has expanded her song repertoire in recent years to include jazz standards, and has collaborated with GSU Piano Professor and jazz musician Geoffrey Haydon singing standard jazz repertoire.
Awards and honors include the Music Achievement Award presented by the University of South Carolina and the esteemed Georgia Teacher of the Year Award from the Georgia Music Teachers Association; Nancy was a National Finalist in the MTNA Young Artist Competition and recipient of numerous scholarships and awards.
Nancy’s reputation as a highly sought teacher in the Atlanta area is based on a long track record of student winnings. Over the years they have received consistent ratings of Conference Recitalist for GMTA, GMEA, the Bach Competition and the Romantic and Impressionistic Piano Competition, as well as winning various concerto competitions. For several years, her students have won the Prodigy Award sponsored by the Atlanta Steinway Society, and the Atlanta Music Club Scholarship. At the national and international level she has had winners in the Clara Wells Piano Competition and the American International Piano Protégé Competition, resulting in performances at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall. Her students have been awarded music scholarships to excellent music schools around the country, including a 9-year old student who was accepted into the Juilliard School on full scholarship.
Nancy was recently recognized as a Top Teacher by Steinway and Sons of New York.