About Keva


Pictured from left to right: Kevin Fay clarinet, Roberta McBride viola, Jennifer Mahaffey flute, Keva Vaughan-McMorrow pianist and composer, Patti Warden harp, Heather Hoskins bass. Not pictured: Ian Alvarez percussion and Arianna Hulscher violin.

A frequent performer both as soloist and accompanist throughout many states, Keva played with the Bellevue Philharmonic for eight years and in 2009, and received her 20 year Community Service Award as pianist and celeste player with the Cascade Symphony Orchestra. She has been presented as concerto soloist in works as diverse as Saint-Saens’, “Carnaval of the Animals,” and de Falla’s “Nights in the Gardens of Spain.” She plays regularly on the CSO chamber concert programs as performer and composer. She was staff pianist with the Edmonds Unitarian Church for over a decade and is a favorite composer and performer in their Friday Night Chamber Music Series. She participated in CD recordings for the Northwest Composer’s Orchestra.

Keva accompanied the tenor, Rodnie Nelson, in his Weill Recital hall debut at Carnegie Hall and played solo works there. She accompanied the 1999 All State Chorus under the direction of Dr. Catoni Conlon. Later, she toured with a gospel choir and played in Stravinsky’s ‘Wedding” under the direction of Rick Asher. She has presented her own compositions for the Unitarian Church and at many WA State Music Teachers conventions where she has been an active member for over 30 years.
Reviewers have praised her rhythmic strength, warmness and delicacy of tone. Her compositions for piano, art songs, chorus and piano, guitar, violin, clarinet and many other chamber idioms have been frequently performed to enthusiastic acclaim. In June 2010, she will perform her newly composed chamber work as the WA State Composer of the Year, to be presented at the state capital in Olympia, WA, for the Washington State Music Teachers Association annual convention.


While her training was in piano performance, composition has been Keva’s life-long love. She first published “Four Piano Pieces,” which included a prelude & fugue, a nocturne, a splashy salon piece for piano solo, and a piano 4-hand work. This was followed by a cycle of art songs, entitled “Songs of Love,” more individual art songs, works for clarinet, guitar, and a work for piano & chorus. These compositions are recorded on her millenium CD, “Mandala Awakening -Musical Compositions of Keva Vaughan-McMorrow.”

More recently Keva published the children’s piano method book (early to intermediate) “Suite Dreams -Eight Lullabies in Ancient Grecian Modes.” This has been in frequent use by her WSMTA colleagues and now available with an accompanying CD.

In November 2009, Keva released a CD of her Christmas and Hanukkah arrangements, “Classic Holiday Favorites.” In June 2010, the Washington State Music Teachers Association presented her as the WA State Composer of the Year, in a performance of her newly composed chamber work to be recorded and performed with CSO musicians. Her music is published by Mandala Press: 1024 4th Av. S., Edmonds, WA 98020-4154.


Keva with student

In addition to her Master of Music Degree in Piano Performance from the University of Washington, Keva Vaughan-McMorrow is a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music through the Music Teachers National Association. Her Permanent Professional Certificate is in Piano Performance with an emphasis on teaching theory and composition.

An early apprenticeship as a music teacher through the Washington State MTNA program at age 15, got her started on the career for which she recently received her 30 year teaching certificate. She has served as an active member in the Tri-Cities, Seattle and Edmonds chapters and as an adjudicator in performance and composition. In the Seattle chapter Keva served in many capacities, including vice president and editor of the chapter newsletter, “Staccato Notes.” In the Edmonds chapter, she is a charter member and past president, and she started the Edmonds newsletter, “Noteworthy.” She now chairs the Time Era Piano Competition Festivals to teach young musicians musical style. She is also active in training young teachers, helping them to become certified, and has trained many musicians to assist in her orchestral and church jobs.

At the local, state and national levels, her students have received acclaim in numerous competitions of piano performance and composition. Many are successful chamber music performers, teachers, DJ’s, church musicians, recording studio musicians, and piano technician assistants.

Her philosophy is “Don’t look for talent, be thankful for your students, do your job and teach.” She has consistently received top ratings for her teaching through WSMTA and rave reviews for her adjudicating and master classes. Her numerous workshops in how to teach composition are widely attended throughout the Pacific Northwest.