Director, Armstrong Community Music School, Austin, TX
Margaret Perry has been a music educator for 38 years. Trained originally as a harpsichordist, Perry performed with Baroque music groups around Texas, and served for several years as the pianist for the Houston Ballet. Perry has taught music in both public and private schools in the U.S. and Europe, and has maintained a private piano teaching practice in Austin for more than three decades. For twenty years, Perry was the director of education for Austin Lyric Opera. In April of 2000, she became the founding director of the Armstrong Community Music School, the first music school in the world to be established by an opera company. In March of 2003, the City of Austin, Texas presented Ms. Perry a Community Service Award, and the same year the State of Texas declared a day in her honor for thirty years of arts advocacy and education. In 2010, the Austin Business Journal chose Ms. Perry as one of the women in Central Texas to receive the Profiles in Power: Women of Influence awards. She was inducted into the Austin Arts Hall of Fame in June, 2012. This year the Armstrong Community Music School became an independent non-profit under her leadership and opened its new headquarters in July, 2012. She has lectured extensively on the lives of composers and opera history for both children’s classes and adult opera audiences, and has created curricula for general musical studies for many ages. Perry also serves as a consultant for community arts education providers on issues of management and advocacy. Perry has been a trustee for nine non-profit boards in the Austin area, and was elected chairman of three of these. She served two terms on the board of directors of the National Guild for Community Arts Education, and currently serves on advisory boards for Chamber Music in Public Schools (CHAMPS), Theater Action Project, and the Austin Classical Guitar Society.