Jody Graves maintains an exciting, diverse and active performing career, and is recognized nationally as a distinguished artist and teacher of piano. Her recital engagements as a solo artist and collaborative pianist take her across the United States and abroad. She has performed concerts in Austria, Norway, France, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, Japan, and has toured in the Persian Gulf serving as a Cultural Ambassador for the U.S. State Department. The Middle East Tour, with the Sapphire Trio, included concerts in Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. The press reviews have called their performances “exciting…imaginative and compelling.” Her work in the Middle East since then has continued and in April, 2010, she was a judge for the National Palestinian Piano Festival in Jerusalem, and following that event toured the West Bank region with the Sapphire Trio performing concerts and giving master classes. The Sapphire Trio returned to the Middle East for a concert tour and master classes in April, 2011, and Dr. Graves returned to the Middle East to perform solo concerts and give master classes and lectures in March 2012. In June 2016 Dr. Graves performed concerts and gave master classes in Bogota and Medellin, Colombia, and has plans to return to Jerusalem to perform and teach in 2018. She has performance dates in Ireland and France during the 2018-19 season.
Dr. Graves is in great demand as an adjudicator for piano competitions and festivals. Each season takes her across the country as an MTA clinician, and she has an active schedule each year as a workshop presenter for teachers. Ms. Graves has been a presenter at the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy, and in 2015 was a Keynote Speaker for NCKP in Chicago, IL. She has been a presenter and performer at numerous State and National MTNA conferences such as the National MTNA Conference (Kansas City, Milwaukee, San Antonio, Las Vegas, etc) and was invited to present at the national MTNA Conference again in 2015 in Las Vegas. She was the guest artist for the Utah State MTA conference in 2013, and was the guest artist for the Idaho and Montana State MTA conferences in 2016. Dr. Graves has served as a judge for the International Piano Competition at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and also served on the faculty for the Eastman Summer Session titled ‘Plays Well With Others’, featuring sessions on collaborative arts performance. Additionally, Dr. Graves has authored articles for the American Music Teacher and Clavier magazines, and will join the editorial board for the AMT e-journal in 2017.
Her 4th recording project ‘ANANDA – Notes from the Heart’ was released in May 2015 featuring the music of Brahms, Liszt, Berg, Copland and others. She has performed solo and chamber recitals across the country at university guest artist series and community concert events, and has been a featured performing artist many times on NPR public radio. Ms. Graves has been a soloist with the Spokane Symphony, the Butte Symphony and the Wenatchee Symphony and has received rave reviews of her performance of ‘Rhapsody in Blue’. Graves is the pianist with the nationally acclaimed Sapphire Trio and they have been featured guest artists at the National MTNA conference, the International Clarinet Festivals in Tokyo, Los Angeles, Assisi, Italy, Baton Rouge, LA, and Madrid, Spain.
Dr. Graves also offers her popular “Artists’ Retreat” seminars which focus on the “Heart of Performance” addressing everything from the issues of stage delivery, to living an artistic life. Graves is especially interested in promoting concert art music, creating unique and contemporary ways to foster a collaborative experience between artist and listener, and is dedicated to maintaining the life of music in our schools and culture. Ms. Graves is recognized for her creative ability to engage the audience during her concerts with anecdotes, historical perspectives and humor, and often uses multi-media to highlight the musical works. The press has referred to her as “Victoria Borge”.
She holds a Doctorate Degree in Piano Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York and is currently Professor of Piano at Eastern Washington University, in Cheney, WA. She was also awarded the EWU Fosseen-Kusaka Distinguished International Exchange Scholar Award which took her to Japan as a solo artist and master class clinician in 2014.