The Carolyn Benton Cockefair Chair continues to play an influential role in the cultural and intellectual life at UMKC and in the Kansas City community.

The Cockefair Chair continues its 60-year tradition of presenting fascinating lectures. Lectures are announced as soon as arrangements are final. Please check this website and subscribe to our contact list so that you are sure to receive the most current lecture information.
Event: Carolyn Benton Cockefair Chair Lecture
Guest Name: Dean Courtney Crappell

The Role of the Conservatory in Building a Healthy Community

Sponsor: Carolyn Benton Cockefair Chair
Date: Thursday, August 8th, 2024
Time: 11:30am
Location: Pierson Auditorium in the Atterbury Student Success Center; 5000 Homes Street, 64110 (UMKC Campus).
Admission Fee: $30 per person (Tables of 8 will be reserved only if the entire table is purchased by one person at the time the tickets are ordered).
Parking Information: Free Parking is available in lot 38 north of the Atterbury Student Success Center
Event Contact: Matt McLain – 816.235.5772

Register Here

About the lecture:
Through a blend of artistic excellence, educational innovation, and community engagement, conservatories serve as cultural hubs that enrich the lives of individuals and strengthen the fabric of society. This discussion will highlight how the UMKC Conservatory is uniquely positioned to contribute to the well-being of Kansas City and beyond, through its diverse programs, collaborations, and outreach initiatives. Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of the transformative power of the arts and the essential place of the conservatory in nurturing a thriving, connected, and creative community.

Guest Bio:

Dean Courtney Crappell
Dean Courtney Crappell

Dr. Courtney Crappell joined the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory as Dean in 2022. Since then, he has been leading strategic planning efforts focused on interdisciplinary initiatives and community-centered learning and research. As a specialist in piano and piano pedagogy, Dean Crappell authored the book Teaching Piano Pedagogy: A Guidebook for Training Effective Teachers (Oxford, 2019), which has been described as “essential to the professional pedagogue's bookshelf.” In 2021, his interdisciplinary research team’s article, “The Effects of Group Keyboard Music Making on the Mood States of College Students,” appeared in the journal Psychology of Music. He is currently preparing a book chapter titled, “Training the Teachers,” for the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Piano Pedagogy with co-author Liz Haddon (Univ. of York, England). Active in service for national and international organizations, Dean Crappell is an elected member of the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) Commission on Accreditation. He also serves on the board for the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) and is a member of the College of Examiners (Piano) for the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Canada.


Past Lectures

In the past few years, our audiences have heard famous historians, experts on climate change and foreign policy, renowned authors, educators and others who examine contemporary life. More outstanding lectures are coming from the Cockefair Chair.

Recent lecturers include authors Adam Gopnik, Andrew Kaplan, Ben Lerner and Meg Wolitzer, experts on climate change Diana Liverman and Bill McKibben, artist Carrie Mae Weems, former Ambassador Michael McFaul, educators Sarah Lewis and Sarah Marty, historian Andrew Bacevich, former Press Secretary to the President Josh Earnest, founder/executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative Bryan Stevenson and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson