Mortensen Named International Steinway Artist

by Victoria Stearns, Public Relations Writer

John Mortensen, D.M.A., professor of piano at Cedarville University‚ has been named an International Steinway Artist by the legendary piano maker Steinway & Sons. The award will be formally announced during a celebratory concert at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5 in the Dixon Ministry Center Recital Hall. 

“Having worked closely with this company in both my performing career and as manager of Cedarville’s fleet of 60 pianos, it feels right to make it official,” said Mortensen. “I’ve spent well over 20,000 hours playing these instruments, and I can say that they are truly the best.” 

The International Roster of Steinway Artists includes many of the most prestigious pianists of the last 150 years‚ such as Duke Ellington‚ George Gershwin‚ Sergei Rachmaninoff, Harry Connick Jr. and Billy Joel. 

In order to be chosen for the roster, pianists must have achieved national recognition as concert performers and have achieved a special love for Steinway Pianos for performance. 

"When I practice, teach and perform, I require responsive action, rich resonance and a tone of depth and complexity,” said Mortensen. “This is why I always choose the Steinway piano.” 

Mortensen has served as professor of music at Cedarville University since 1995 and holds a National Certification in Piano through the Music Teachers National Association and is endorsed as an Ohio Artist on Tour through the Ohio Arts Council.

Additionally, he was recently named an Excellence in Education honoree by Ohio Magazine and in 2015, was selected to the Fulbright Specialist Roster by the U.S. Department of State. Over the next five years the Fulbright Specialist program will provide Mortensen with opportunities to perform and teach at universities abroad.

He performs and teaches Irish and American folk music, playing mandolin, Irish flute, Irish button accordion, Uilleann pipes and Irish whistle. Furthermore, he created America's only college-level traditional Irish music session class.

Mortensen studied with Lynne Bartholomew at the University of Michigan and Anne Koscielny and Raymond Hanson at the University of Maryland, where he received his doctorate in piano performance and literature.  

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,711 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit www.cedarville.edu