Ms. Barbara Rivadeneira spent her pre-college years in Ann Arbor, Michigan studying piano with Elisabeth Hildebrandt, Margaret Bond and a few lessons with Joseph Gurt. She studied ballet and modern dance extensively during these years as well. As a result, her first professional job in music was accompanying ballet classes at the Ann Arbor YMCA in Michigan.
Ms. Rivadeneira attended Conservatory of Music at Baldwin-Wallace College, now Baldwin University, in Berea, Ohio. She completed her Bachelor of Music degree in June 1979 with a major in Piano Performance. Studies there also included extensive study playing harpsichord and organ. Among her favorite activities was working with a violinist and cellist in a piano trio. Illness postponed her return to piano studies for a few years.
Subsequently, she was employed from 1981 to 1987 as a fulltime office worker at Kent State University in Ohio, where Ms. Rivadeneira was able to study piano with Professor Lois Rova Ozanich for four years. Ms. Rivadeneira did office work from 8 AM to 5 PM weekdays and practiced piano a minimum of five hours every day. Her dedication to music culminated in 1987 by winning the KSU School of Music's concerto competition. This resulted in her performance of the first movement of Saints-Saens Second Piano Concerto with KSU's orchestra. Ms. Rivadeneira also performed in her years at Kent State University two full piano solo recitals, in several new music concerts, and accompanied many other musicians as well.
In August 1987, Ms. Rivadeneira began her studies toward a Master of Fine Arts in piano performance and attained that degree in 1992. At the University of Iowa School of Music, she was a teaching assistant from 1987 - 1992 with duties that included teaching both individual and group piano classes, accompanying and providing administrative assistance to the piano department chair. During her time as a graduate student at the UI School of Music, Ms. Rivadeneira performed extensively. She was a pianist for the Center for New Music and also performed new works by both UI faculty, guest faculty and UI graduate students in other venues. She also performed in several chamber music concerts and solo instrumental degree recitals for many other music students.
Ms. Rivadeneira's completed most of the coursework toward a Doctorate in Musical Arts degree beginning in 1990, including a successful DMA piano recital in May, 1991. Her teaching positions include Coe College as an Adjunct Music Faculty in piano between the years of 1990-1997 and 2002-2004; and, at Grinnell College as an Applied Music Associate in piano from August 1992 to the present; and, a sizeable teaching studio in her Iowa City home since 1988.
Ms. Rivadeneira has been a frequent adjudicator at piano festivals and competitions especially for the organizations Music Teachers National Association/Iowa Music Teachers Association, National Federation of Music Teachers/Iowa Federation of Music Clubs and Piano Music Teacher's Association/PMTA. She has also taught some studio master classes for individual piano teacher studios in Iowa.