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Alice Jean Fortney Welch was born in Clarksburg, West Virginia. In 1959 she received the degree of Bachelor of Music in Applied Piano with Voice Minor at West Virginia University. She received her Master of Music Degree in 1960, also at West Virginia University, and from 1975-1976, Mrs. Welch obtained 18 additional graduate study hours in the area of Musicology. She has continued her education over the years, attending many workshops presented by distinguished musicians in the music field, including Lynn Freeman Olson, Jane Bastien, Nelita True, and Ruth Slenczynska, to name a few. Mrs. Welch is certified with The Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), and also The West Virginia Music Teachers Association (WVMTA), serving the WVMTA as District Chairman from 1973-1978. She is also a certified member of MTNA and Texas Music Teachers Association (TMTA), and the Abilene Music Teachers Association (AMTA). Mrs. Welch served the AMTA in many offices, including President from 1991-1993, and again from 2003-2005. She has been named AMTA’s Teacher of the Year for the years 1991 and 1997.
Mrs. Welch has recorded Milhaud’s Suite pour Violon, Clarinett, et Piano for David Lipscomb University Artist series, and has co-authored with her husband (now deceased) “Shape-Note Singing in Appalachia,” published by Goldenseal Magazine in the April-September 1978 issues, and presented it at the annual conference of the American Folklore Society in Detroit, Michigan in 1977. Mrs. Welch taught at David Lipscomb University from 1960 - 1962, and at West Virginia University from 1968 – 1984, and currently serves as Adjunct Piano instructor at Abilene Christian University, providing Private Studio lessons for students of all levels.
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