Catharine Lysinger


Professor of Practice, Piano Performance and Pedagogy, Piano Preparatory Department
Coordinator of Piano Performance and Pedagogy





Performance Recordings
Week-long Summer Institute for Young Pianists

Catharine Lysinger is professor of practice at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, where she teaches applied piano and is head of the piano pedagogy area. 

She is a prizewinner in national and international piano competitions, including First Prize in the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) National Young Artist Competition and First Prize in the Wideman International Piano Competition. Lysinger is a frequent guest of festivals nationally and internationally. Recent invitations to perform, give master classes and present lectures have come from the Brancaleoni Festival (Italy), the Vienna International Piano Academy (Austria), the May Festival at the Tianjin Conservatory and East China Normal University in Shanghai (China), and the National Conservatory in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic), co-hosted by Estudio Diná and Stephen F. Austin University.

Lysinger has performed with orchestras including the Filarmónica de Jalisco (Guadalajara, Mexico), the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra, the Houston Civic Symphony and the Clear Lake Orchestra, and frequently collaborates as soloist with the Meadows Symphony Orchestra and the Meadows Wind Ensemble. Performances include the Prokofiev Concerto No. 1, Stravinsky Concerto for Piano and Winds, Mozart Concerto for Two Pianos, Mozart Concerto in D minor, Messiaen’s Oiseaux Exotiques and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. Lysinger is also an active soloist and collaborator in chamber music concerts with SMU colleagues. With duo-piano partner Dr. Alex McDonald she has performed the Bartók Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion with percussionists of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and numerous other works for two pianos.

Lysinger was nominated for the SMU Provost’s Teaching Recognition Award, which honors faculty who demonstrate a commitment to excellence and a consummate dedication to teaching.  She was also named Pre-Collegiate Teacher of the Year by her colleagues in the Texas Music Teachers Association. Many of her university and pre-college students have been awarded first prize in numerous competitions, including the MTNA-Texas Junior, Senior and Young Artist Piano Competitions, the Plano Symphony Young Artist Competition and the Lewisville Lake Competition. Graduates of her studio have been accepted to major universities and conservatories nationwide including The Juilliard School, New England Conservatory and Indiana University, to name a few.

Lysinger is a frequent adjudicator, recently serving on the screening jury for the Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition and sitting on the jury for the Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition. As a lecturer, she has frequently presented on various topics related to teaching to national and state MTAs. Lysinger is the founding director of the SMU Institute for Young Pianists (SMU IYP), a summer festival that attracts the best and brightest young pianists in the region and from across the U.S. and abroad. 

She earned a D.M.A. in piano performance at the University of Houston with Professor Nancy Weems and undertook additional studies with Horacio Gutiérrez, Gabriel Chodos (Aspen Music Festival) and Evelyne Brancart (Aspen Music Festival).


D.M.A. Piano Performance, University of Houston
M.M. Piano Performance, University of Houston
B.M. Piano Performance, Southwestern University

Course list

Fundamentals of Piano Pedagogy II 
Piano Pedagogy II: Intermediate and Advanced Students 
Piano Pedagogy Practicum 
Piano Pedagogy Internship 
Applied lessons: private study in piano, undergraduate and graduate levels 
Catharine Lysinger