2021 Outstanding Teacher Award


2021 Recipient 

Described as an “outstanding piano pedagogue,” Louisiana native Melva Villard has been teaching piano in Alexandria for the last 44 years. Melva is an accomplished pianist and teacher who is nationally and state certified. She has demonstrated a high level of commitment to her work teaching piano and organ, performing, accompanying, directing a large church music program, and extensively volunteering her time to LMTA, the Central Louisiana Music Teachers Association and her community.
Melva’s commitment to teaching has been demonstrated throughout her career. She has always been active attending seminars and conferences to keep up to date with the latest teaching ideas and implementing the latest technology. She has taught as Adjunct Professor at LSUA; the owner/instructor of a Kindermusik studio and served as Choir Director and music teacher for all grades at St. Rita Catholic School in Alexandria. She recently retired from St. Rita Catholic Church after serving for 30 years as theDirector of Music and Liturgy.
For decades, her students have been active and successful participants in Piano Rally, Keyboard Olympics, LFMC events and local competitions. Recently, she has been one of the first teachers to commit to learning the Keyboard Olympics syllabus. She was the first teacher in the state to have a student pass the first three levels, allowing her student the first in the state to become the first gold medalist in Keyboard Olympics. Many of her students have gone to successful careers in music and several have made a positive impact in their communities.
Her former student refers to her as “a force to be reckoned with… the best music teacher I could ever imagine and one of the most influential people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I owe so much of who I am and my own accomplishments to her.”
Melva’s service to LMTA and CLMTA has been outstanding. She has been the chair of several LMTA board positions including Rally Chair and currently serves as the state Necrology Chair. At the local level, she has held the position of President numerous times. She has created and chaired programs that helped keep CLMTA lively and relevant for the times.
In addition to her extensive teaching and service, Melva has had various important and active roles in her community. She has served on the Board for the Rapides Symphony Orchestra and the Louisiana International Piano Competition. She has been the Associate Dean for Central Louisiana AGO and has been a member of the Junior League for many years. As a pianist, she participated in keyboard events such as the 5-Piano 10-Player Fundraiser for the Alzheimer’s Association and Brown Bag Lunch for the City of Alexandria. She has served as a collaborative pianist for the Louisiana College, LSUA Theater,
LBM Productions and Family Playhouse Theater. She has organized large dinner and show choir events and her students have participated in large keyboard ensembles such as “monster concerts” and fundraisers for the LMTA SOS fund.
Mrs. Melva Villard has a Bachelor of Music degree from Louisiana College and the Master of Music degree from Northwestern State University.

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