The Cliburn designed Cliburn in the Classroom, its signature music education program, to introduce young audiences to classical music. Cliburn in the Classroom programs present the excitement of live piano performances to second-, third-, and fourth-grade students and reinforce the basic elements of music through fun, interactive activities within the context of classical piano repertoire. Cliburn in the Classroom is presented annually to approximately 50,000 public elementary students across North Texas. The programs are offered at no cost to participating schools.

Dr. John Feierabend, nationally known director of music education at the Hartt School of the University of Hartford, and Shields-Collins Bray, principal keyboardist of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, developed Cliburn in the Classroom presentations. Each interactive concert, which lasts about 40 minutes, features a program facilitator and guest pianist. A grand piano is brought into the school, and a camcorder and projector are used to project the pianist’s hands onto a screen for all students to view. Illustrations further enhance the students’ experiences.

These programs enable students to approach music through multiple intelligences: linguistic, logical/mathematical, spatial, musical, bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal. In addition, they address national standards in the arts for music education.

The Cliburn produces a study guide in collaboration with the Fort Worth Independent School District for classroom use. The study guide reinforces the schools’ core curriculum through classroom activities and research materials, thus extending the benefits of the Cliburn in the Classroom program and meeting state-mandated education guidelines.

Music Education Consultant – Dr. John Feierabend
Artistic Advisor – Shields-Collins Bray
Director of Education – Susan Robertson

For more information about Cliburn in the Classroom, please contact Susan Robertson at or call 817.738.6536.


Thank You to our Youth Arts Education Sponsors:

Arts Council Northeast
Arts Council of Fort Worth
BBVA Compass Foundation
Big Thought
Victor Boschini
Carl B. and Florence E. King Foundation
Virginia C. Dorman
Elizabeth L. and Russell F. Hallberg Foundation
Fash Foundation
Michael Goldman
Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation Fund of Communities Foundation of Texas
Melissa and Scot Hollmann
James Avery Craftsman, Inc.
Lowe Foundation
Devin O’Toole
R4 Foundation
Alan Rauch
William Rhodes
Rodger Soucy
Southwest Bank
Texas Commission on the Arts
The Junior League of Fort Worth, Inc.
Union Pacific Foundation
Erin Willbanks
Wells Fargo
XTO Energy Inc.