A Minnesota native, Dr. Sara Langmead made her orchestral debut at age 16 with the 3M Symphony Orchestra. She won first prizes in the MN Schubert Club and UW-Madison Concerto competitions at the collegiate level, studied with György Sebők for two summers at the Banff Centre, and in 1997 won first prize at the international SAI Competition. Dr. Langmead earned her Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University where she studied piano for seven years with Yoheved Kaplinsky (current chair of the Juilliard Piano Department). Dr. Langmead taught piano at St. Mary’s College-MD, the University of Missouri-Columbia, and at Mercyhurst University-PA as Assistant Professor of Piano and Piano Department Director. Returning to Minnesota in 2004, Dr. Langmead built and operated a successful piano studio in Circle Pines.
Dr. Langmead has been a Teaching Artist in Piano at MacPhail since January 2022. Two months later, her roster was full with a long wait list. Since then, she has consolidated her students into one, making MacPhail-Minneapolis her home for teaching and creative work. She teaches individual piano lessons to students ages five through seventy, from pre-readers to conservatory bound highschoolers and competition winners. Many of her students have participated in numerous recitals through the Minneapolis Music Teachers Forum, the St. Paul Piano Teachers Association, and the MacPhail Performance Festivals and studio recitals. She had first place winners in the Minnesota Music Teachers Association State Contest and Winners Concert, the MacPhail 2022 and 2023 Senior Honors Competitions and Recitals, and the MacPhail Concerto Competition, and a second place winner in the MMTF Mozart Competition. In group instruction, Dr. Langmead teaches seven levels of weekly online theory classes, monthly in person studio performance classes, and mentors and guides students in the rigorous MMTA Theory and Piano Exam processes. Starting in September 2023, almost 100% of her students will participate in the MacPhail Crescendo Program. New this year is her one year appointment at Saint Cloud State University as Adjunct Piano Faculty, teaching applied piano and piano pedagogy.
In July, Dr. Langmead brought seven advanced precollege MacPhail students to the Young Artists Piano Camp at St. John's University for a week-long piano intensive of masterclasses, performances, lessons, and musicianship classes with Dr. Paul Wirth, Dr. Andrew Staupe, Dr. Megan Wallace, and Deanna Anderson, NCTM. It was an inspiring week of piano fun!
Dr. Langmead is personally and professionally committed to DEI work by participating in the DEI committees at MacPhail and in MMTA. She regularly presents clinics and workshops for teachers regarding piano technique, musical gesture, gender representation in piano literature, four-hand music by female composers, and Women Play Beethoven, her lecture-recital highlighting the legacy and phenomenon of women who have recorded the complete piano sonata cycle of Beethoven. At the local and national level, Dr. Langmead performs as a piano soloist and chamber musician.
Dr. Langmead specializes in teaching students the widely sought-after technique of her conservatory training. Her students benefit from a personable acumen accumulated while mentoring students of all ages and levels over a thirty-year career. She enriches the lives of her students and listeners by communicating passionate, creative, and academic insight through enthusiastic teaching, performance, studio class, adjudication, writing, and discussion.