The School of the Arts recently announced the appointment of Dr. Cindy St. Clair as the interim chair of the Division of Music. St. Clair was an adjunct professor with the music area last year and returned this fall as a visiting assistant professor of piano until her permanent hire at the end of 2020.
“It is a privilege to bring back one of Samford’s best in Dr. Cindy St. Clair. Her musicianship, reputation in teaching, and exceptional leadership skills add strength to an already distinguished faculty in music,” said Joe Hopkins, dean of the School of the Arts.
St. Clair was part of a national and international search to fill a piano faculty vacancy and her credentials led to her appointment to both the piano position and taking on a leadership role in the Division of Music.
“It is an honor to be back at Samford where incredible faculty and staff invested passionately in my education and future,” said St. Clair. “I hope to give back as much of that wisdom and inspiration as possible in my new role as an administrator and a faculty member. I am excited about the continuous growth of the School of the Arts and the possibilities for our students, and I look forward to helping shape what is to come.”
St. Clair holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree and a Master of Music degree both in Piano Performance from the University of Alabama and a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance from Samford University. Her teachers include Kevin Chance, Amanda Penick, Ronald Shinn, and Betty Sue Shepherd. St. Clair also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Paralegal Studies with a concentration in Business from Samford University. She worked 16 years in the legal field prior to pursuing her degrees in music during which time she spent many years serving on the Board of Directors for a professional association, mentoring students, and presenting lectures at professional conferences. Previously, St. Clair served as the chair of the Department of Music and the director of the Quality Enhancement Plan at Judson College. In 2019, she received the Mary Gibson Thompson Teaching Award for excellence at Judson. St. Clair has won several piano competitions in the region and is frequently invited to adjudicate piano competitions and present lectures. She is a certified teacher in piano by the Music Teachers National Association and serves on the executive board of the Alabama Music Teachers Association.
As a performing artist, she has appeared throughout the United States and abroad as a soloist and collaborator, which includes solo performances in the 39th Annual Classical Music Festival held in Eisenstadt, Austria. She has been a featured soloist with the Huxford Symphony Orchestra, the University of Alabama Symphonic Band, and the Samford University Orchestra. In demand as a collaborative pianist, St. Clair has a wealth of experience working with vocalists, ensembles, instrumentalists, choirs, and music theatre groups.