Pianist Elvia L. Puccinelli is Associate Professor of Music and Coordinator of Collaborative Piano at the University of North Texas College of Music, where she has served on the faculty since 2004 as both vocal coach and professor of collaborative piano. A dedicated educator in the field of collaborative arts and a specialist in vocal literature, she has been a clinician or guest teacher at universities throughout the country such as Indiana University, the University of Southern California, and Vanderbilt University. With collaborative piano luminaries Margo Garrett and Donna Loewy, she has by invitation presented multiple sessions on the pedagogy of collaborative piano at National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) and National Opera Association national conventions. A published author on topics of song literature and collaborative piano techniques, she is currently on the editorial board of the NATS Journal of Singing. An advocate for contemporary American art song, Elvia has worked with composer Jake Heggie on creating a comprehensive performer’s resource to his songs, and recently recorded a cd of songs of Juliana Hall with soprano Molly Fillmore (in production).
Elvia is founder and Artistic Director of CollabFest at UNT, a professional conference devoted exclusively to collaborative piano, the first event of its kind in the world. Now entering its fifth year, this conference brings together collaborative pianists from around the world and is committedto nurturing a collaborative culture in our world by fostering the collaborative ideals of partnership, participation and presence. She is spearheading the establishment of the International Keyboard Collaborative Arts Society, a professional association for collaborative pianists, which will launch in October 2020. For more information about the 2020 conference, with master clinician Warren Jones, or for information about past events, please visit https://collaborativepiano.music.unt.edu/collabfest. In response to the many challenges the current pandemic is posing for collaborators, she instituted Collaborators in the Time of Corona, weekly free and interactive zoom meetings for pianist-partners to discuss and share resources during this complicated season. She is dedicated to serving the international collaborative piano community.
An alumna of San Francisco Opera's Merola Program and former faculty at the AIMS program in Graz, Austria, Elvia spent over ten seasons coaching young professional singers at the OperaWorks program in Los Angeles. Featured as guest pianist on multiple occasions with the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar, she is currently on the faculty of Opera Lucca.
Elvia has appeared in song and chamber music recitals at venues from Los Angeles to New York City, and throughout Europe at such diverse performance events as the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Chamber Concert Series, Placido Domingo's Operalia Competition, the International Trumpet Guild Conference, the National Opera Association Competition, and at NOA and NATS national conventions.
A published author on topics of song literature and collaborative piano techniques,. Elvia has a special interest in language and in the intersection of language and music; she also holds an undergraduate degree in French, and has served as language consultant for Martha Gerhart’s series Italian Song Texts from the 17th through the 20th Centuries for Leyerle Press.
Elvia began her immersion in the wonderful world of music playing for voice lessons given by her father, Primo, and assisting her mother, Marlene, in playing church services and teaching lessons. The work they began in her continued at the University of Southern California, where she completed MM and DMA in collaborative piano with Alan L. Smith.