It's taken me a day to gather my thoughts on the passing of Mary Anthony Cox- this amazing woman, one of my favorite - and most important - #Juilliard
As one of the (very) few female Ear Training Teaching Fellows in the history of Juilliard to be taken under Mary Anthony's wing, I felt a special bond with MA. We had a special "understanding", and I always felt supported and appreciated as a teacher, musician, and member of the "team". MA was not just a phenomenal ear training teacher. She was a living, breathing example of what it means to #teach
. She was able to isolate- and cultivate- the innate strengths and unseen abilities of each student who crossed her path, even when they did not see it in themselves. This is the rarest of gifts, and it is what separates teachers from legends.
We all know how uncompromising she was in her standards, but fewer people know how truly compassionate she was. We had so many conversations about students who were falling behind; students who were having trouble balancing the pressure of coursework and rehearsals, students who had aural weaknesses or social behavioral difficulties. I'll never forget the care and kindness in which she discussed these challenges- always careful to separate the person from the problem, never judgmental or negative. This is a side of MA that many may not have seen; but for those of us who taught by her side, it was a constant lesson in compassionate humility.
She identified strengths in me that I didn't know I had, and supported me as I learned what it means to teach. She influenced my way of thinking and helped inspire in me the desire to lift those around me in whatever sphere I'm in; whether it's performing on the stage, in the classroom or in life. She also helped me to see that teaching and performing are two sides of the same coin; each is as important as other, and both are essentially acts of giving.
This picture is from our final day of class in 2008. A celebration- which seems like the best way to remember the lion, the singular Mary Anthony Cox. ❤️ #Juilliard #music #legend #teacher #musician #findyourla #godownonmi #classicalmusic #juilliardalumni #female #feminism #strength