Since she began teaching piano during her time at Meredith College 20 years ago, Chrissy Ricker, ’00, has continually evolved her creative work for a variety of audiences. A pianist since the age of seven, Ricker has steadily realized new goals by teaching, composing, performing, and publishing her own music.
After finishing her Bachelor of Arts in music, Ricker continued her studies at Meredith and completed her master’s degree in music while teaching at a large music academy in Raleigh. As an assistant music director for an afterschool program, Ricker developed a passion for writing music for students.
In 2006, Ricker opened and managed Ricker Piano Studio. It was there where she began to compose music for her students and submitted her work to publishing companies. Despite many rejection letters, Ricker continued with patience and courage. In 2013, Kios Music Company published her work along with Piano Pronto Publishing. Now, she has published 12 books of piano music for students.
“I feel very fortunate to be working with two great publishing companies that have provided me with the opportunity to connect with teachers [and students] from all around the world,” Ricker said.
In recent years, Ricker’s work has been performed in the Triangle area with several local composers and her group, The Carolina Contemporary Composers. Commissioned by the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute, Ricker is excited to pursue this new goal and learn more about composing music.
“I think one of my strengths as both a teacher and a composer is my passion for making music accessible to students of all ages, abilities, and skill levels,” said Ricker. “I love knowing that I can create music that resonates with students and makes them excited about learning.”
As Ricker continues to advance her many skills, she often returns to Meredith. Recently, she performed her newest composition with her freshman wind ensemble director, Jimmy Gilmore. Even though Ricker has already achieved success in her career, she continues to evolve as a musician and artist.
“My time at Meredith taught me to never stop looking for opportunities to learn and try new things.”