Music Educators Association of New Jersey

Serving teachers and students since 1927

Young Artist Master Class


A special Young Artist Master Class is held each year at the June General Meeting. It is quite an honor for a student to be chosen to perform at this class, which is conducted by an outstanding piano pedagogue.

The audition usually takes place the first Sunday in June and is currently held at the County College of Morris. For this audition, student performers are heard by two judges. The repertoire requirements are those as listed in the Annual Piano Auditions Syllabus for Young Artist A and B and Young Artist Preparatory. Modifications are noted in the syllabus and below in the Guidelines. From a maximum of 12 entrants, the judges choose three or four students to perform. Since this audition also functions as part of the regular audition process, ratings are recorded and count toward other MEA awards and scholarship programs. Highlights from the Master Class are published on the website under For Members/Highlights under the month of June.

Guidelines for Student Master Class Auditions

  1. Students must be Young Artist A or B, or Young Artist Preparatory A to register.
  2. The Prelude and Fugue MUST match.
  3. All pieces must be memorized in their entirety.
  4. Students may not be beyond senior year in high school.
  5. Students must have entered the Auditions a minimum of one year before applying.
  6. Previous winners cannot register the year following their participation in the Master Class. They must skip one year before registering again.

Those students selected to perform will be notified within a few days after auditioning. Online application form and the current auditions syllabus are available from the teacher's Member Homepage. To download and mail in a registration form, please use the Forms/Downloads link in the main menu.

Adell Williams
Why the Winners' Certificates Honor Her Name

Adell WilliamsAdell Williams was president of the MEA from 1953 to 1956, following closely behind her mother, Eleanor Beacon Peck who served from 1948 to1950. An article written for New Jersey Music and Arts in the early 1960s cites how Adell was honored for her "Meritorious" service to the MEA. It goes on to say that Adell believed she was one of the youngest attendees to MEA meetings, accompanying her mother when she was only 12.

The article further exemplifies her industrious nature by telling how in high school she felt music was neglected, so she organized a piano club that raised enough money to buy seven pianos. The pianos were placed at the back of the auditorium and the members practiced 7-piano repertoire and had two performances each year!

As MEA President, she established the "Artist's File," a program intended to find performing engagements for qualified members. With the introduction of this program, the membership of the MEA doubled to over 200 members. Adell served as Membership Chair before heading the Young Artist Concert Committee that eventually merged with The Young Artist Master Class Program. This explains why the winners' certificates for our Master Class program are named in her honor.

Because of Adell's strong interest in theory, she was a valuable member of the committee that created our theory program. At some time or another she chaired or served on almost every MEA committee.

When I studied with Adell, she was the Center Head for what was then Montclair State Teachers College. I participated as a student performer and also served as a "runner" - something that was considered an honor, no stipend required! My early memories of the Auditions include how she prepared a hot meal for the judges, bringing dishes, silverware, and a linen tablecloth from home to set up a proper luncheon. She ran a tight ship, everything was perfectly organized, the halls were quiet and the judges were treated with the utmost respect.

Adell retired from teaching around 1987, and passed away on Martha's Vineyard in 1995 at age 81. In my teaching studio I enjoy the 1935 Steinway B that once graced the studio of her mother.

Joan Bujacich, Former Student of
Adell Williams