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New specialty Steinway piano enhances MSU music department
Fall 2022

STARKVILLE, Miss.—A new high-performance piano in Mississippi State’s Department of Music is enhancing the program with state-of-the-art features as part of the university’s All-Steinway Initiative.

Professor of Music Rosângela Sebba, a Steinway Artist and keyboard coordinator in the MSU College of Education, said she is “delighted” about the addition of the Steinway SPIRIO|r.

Sebba said Mississippi State currently is the only school in the Southeastern Conference in possession of this type of piano. She shared her excitement for MSU students to be taking advantage of this technology and preparing to compete at higher levels, while the department strengthens core skills for both artists and educators.

The university has an All-Steinway School campaign underway in an effort to become one of only a handful of music departments in the world to earn such an acclaimed distinction.

According to Steinway, the SPIRIO|r is the best high resolution player piano with live performance recording and playback capabilities. Users will find new tools to express their art and access past performances—even from the world’s greatest pianists in history.

Bob and Kathy Olsen, major MSU Steinway Initiative donors, recently accompanied Sebba to the New York Steinway piano factory to select a Steinway concert D grand piano for the Lecture-Recital Hall in the university’s new Music Building. During the selection, the Steinway representative demonstrated the SPIRIO|r, sparking Bob Olsen’s curiosity. According to Sebba, he immediately saw the possibilities and benefits that the instrument could bring to MSU’s music department.

Sebba expressed her “immense gratitude” for the Olsens’ generosity and continuous support. She also is aware of the impact the current Steinways in the department have brought to her students and the infinite possibilities they have to make music with musicians around the world.

“I can sit down with students and record their pieces,” Sebba said. “Once I save the recording, we can listen to their performance and edit their mistakes, showing them what went wrong. My students can see their errors being repaired in real time. They can also listen and watch performers and composers through the videos and list of recordings available through the iPad.”

For more information on MSU’s Department of Music, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Crescendo of Support Benefits the Music Building
Fall 2021

Thanks to generous gifts from dedicated alumni, Mississippi State University's Department of Music and its new music building continue to grow in prominence.

Read more starting on page 80 at:

Dr. Sebba to perform and give workshops in Brazil

Dr. Sebba will be giving a two-day workshop to piano teachers and students in Brazil, Escola Basileu Franca, on December 7 and 8. Following the visit, she will be performing with the Orquestra Sinfonica de Goias, Mozart's Concerto No. 21 in C Major. The visit is made possible with the support of MSU Office of Research and Development, College of Education and the Department of Music. 

Sebba wins SPECIAL CITATION at the American Prize Piano Solo

MARCH 2017

Sebba wins SPECIAL CITATION at The American Prize Piano Solo - "Championing the Music of Camargo Guarnieri." The CD album is the first compilation of the eight Sonatinas and the one Sonata for piano solo by Brazilian composer M. Camargo Guarnieri.

The American Prize is a series of new, non-profit national competitions in the performing arts providing cash awards, professional adjudication and regional, national and international recognition for the best recorded performances by ensembles and individuals each year in the United States at the professional, college/university, church, community and secondary school levels. Administered by Hat City Music Theater, Inc., a nonprofit organization based in Danbury, Connecticut, The American Prize was founded in 2009 and is awarded annually. The competitions of The American Prize are open to all U.S. citizens, whether living in this country or abroad, and to others currently living, working and/or studying in the United States of America, its protectorates and territories.      

MSU Honors Dr. Rosângela Sebba with Steinway Artist Celebration


STARKVILLE, Miss.—A Mississippi State University faculty member with more than 36 years of experience in piano performance was honored Tuesday [Sept. 15] with a reception celebrating her prestigious Steinway Artist designation.

Rosângela Yazbec “Rose” Sebba, the music department’s professor of piano, theory and ear training, is among the select ranks of some 1,600 highly esteemed musicians from around the world who have chosen to play exclusively on pianos produced by internationally renowned piano manufacturer Steinway & Sons.

During the Tuesday evening program at The Mill at MSU, President Mark E. Keenum expressed pleasure in having the opportunity to “honor one of the most distinguished members of our Mississippi State University family.”

“For us to have one of very own, Dr. Rose Sebba, recognized as a Steinway Artist exemplifies the quality that we are achieving and going to achieve at Mississippi State,” Keenum said.

Others featured on the prestigious Steinway Artist roster include classical pianist Lang Lang, jazz stars Diane Krall and Harry Connick Jr., pop icon Billy Joel, and legends Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Vladimir Horowitz and Arthur Rubinstein.

Last spring, MSU formally announced its commitment to make the university’s music department an All-Steinway School with the acquisition of a baby-grand and four vertical Steinway pianos. With the All-Steinway School designation, MSU would join a select group of more than 160 institutions of higher learning and conservatories around the world and become the only Mississippi school holding the prestigious honor.

Alumni and friends of the university may assist with gifts toward the All-Steinway Initiative, To contribute, contact Trish Cunetto at 662-325-6762 or

“We are working hard to become an All-Steinway School, and in working at the university level with our Foundation and with our leaders in Jackson and the legislature, I am very confident that we’ll have a new music department building for all of our faculty and students to enjoy,” Keenum added.

Others sharing words of praise for Sebba during the celebration included:

—Richard Blackbourn, MSU dean of the College of Education, who described Sebba as an accomplished pianist and a great person. “Rose has God-given talent, but she has worked hard to perfect her craft. She loves her students and colleagues and is a true team player, and she is the kind of role model we need for all of our faculty at Mississippi State,” he said.   

—Barry E. Kopetz, MSU professor and music department head, echoed those sentiments, adding, “Dedication, character, integrity, and nothing short of accepting perfection—Rose has all of these traits, yet she is humble about being a recipient of this fine award.”

—Robert Klingbeil, director of institutional sales at Amro Music Stores Inc. in Memphis, Tennessee, said after meeting Sebba three years ago, “It didn’t take long for me to recognize her as being a sweet, genuine and exceptionally talented person. It also didn’t take long for me to see her enthusiasm for her students and doing what is best for her department at Mississippi State. Rose’s passion for Steinway pianos is nothing short of infectious.”


A self-proclaimed Bulldog, Sebba said her goal always is “to do what is best for my students and faculty friends.”

“In our department, we are family, and above all, we help each other, so we can help improve the lives of our students. I really want Mississippi State to be an All-Steinway School, and I’m sure that will happen,” she emphasized.  

In addition to a certificate officially distinguishing her as a Steinway Artist, Klingbeil presented Sebba with two framed pieces. One was an image depicting a grand piano on which Sebba’s name and those of other Steinway Artists are listed; the other was a portrait taken of Sebba.

Musical entertainment for the program was provided by Sebba and her fellow colleagues and students. They included professor Jackie Edwards-Henry, on piano; junior civil engineering major and music minor Gabrielle Tran of Pass Christian, piano; senior computer science and music double-major Candace B. Moreau of Florence, South Carolina, piano; junior music and foreign language/Spanish major Sarah E. Jenkins of Brandon, piano; senior music education major Tyler J. Stallings of Pontotoc, alto saxophone; lecturer Jeanette Fontaine, voice; instructor Karen Murphy, piano; magna cum laude music graduate Trent Smith of Noxapater, piano; assistant professor Anthony Kirkland, trumpet; and instructor Sheri Falcone, alto saxophone.

Founder and coordinator of the MSU piano pre-college program and retreat, Sebba currently serves as the Mississippi Music Teachers Association’s vice president for collegiate and national competitions. She also is featured on the Mississippi Arts Commission’s Artist Roster, and has given recitals, master classes and lectures in the United States, Mexico, Portugal, Costa Rica, England, Spain and her native Brazil.

This past summer, Sebba served as an examiner for the Taiwan-based International Piano Performance Examination Committee ( The six-week, all-expenses-paid trip to nine cities afforded her the opportunity to speak with more than 100 private piano teachers, as well as instruct more than 1,300 students on technique, style, literature, music history and theory.

Rosângela Sebba receives MAC Performing Arts Fellowship
JULY 2015

MSU Professor of Music, Rosângela Sebba, has been awarded a grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC). This grant is a portion of the $1.61 million in grants the Commission awarded in 2015-2016 and will be used to develop her performance of twentieth and twenty-first century works for piano.

The grants are made possible by continued funding from the Mississippi State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Mississippi Arts Commission is a state agency serving residents of the state by providing grants that support programs to enhance communities; assist artists and arts organizations; promote the arts in education and celebrate Mississippi’s cultural heritage. Established in 1968, the Mississippi Arts Commission is funded by the Mississippi Legislature, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Mississippi Endowment for the Arts at the Community Foundation of Greater Jackson and other private sources. The agency serves as an active supporter and promoter of arts in community life and in arts education.


Dr. Sebba is part of the Mississippi Arts Artist Roster since 2006 and is a Steinway Artist.

Sebba honored as Steinway Artist

A music faculty member at Mississippi State University with more than 36 year of experience in piano performance has received national recognition for dedication to her craft. 

Read more starting on page 16 at:

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