Edward Francis leads a versatile career in music as a pianist, educator, administrator, and arts advocate. He holds Bachelor and Masters’ degrees in piano performance from California State University, Northridge, and also attended the Aspen Music School & Festival. He has performed solo recitals and has been a featured guest artist with many symphony orchestras. In addition to his solo work he has performed extensively with two established chamber groups: the Westlake Chamber Ensemble, and the DeCesare/Francis Piano Duo. Performances of both groups have been broadcast on radio and television. A live CD of one duo concert has been released on CD. He currently holds faculty positions at CSUN, Pepperdine University, and Moorpark College. Previously teaching experience included a variety of lecture classes and conducting at Oxnard and Ventura Colleges.
He is the current President of the Music Teachers’ Assn. of California-Conejo Valley Branch, and has served multiple terms in this capacity. He has also held nearly every other board position during his membership. He was the state vice president of the California Assn. of Professional Music Teachers, the state affiliate to the Music Teachers National Assn. For four years, he scheduled and supervised the annual state conference, enhancing the meeting with international artists and partnerships with the Italian and Spanish Institutes of Culture. For many years he supervised the monthly Concerts in the Library series for the Friends of the Thousand Oaks Library.
He served on the Education Committee for the Ventura Symphony Orchestra, and then for the New West Symphony. Currently, he serves on the Artistic Committee for the Ventura Music Festival.
A busy clinician and master class teacher, he frequently lectures on a variety of pedagogical subjects, has written and presented several monographs at various conferences, and has had articles published in the professional journal, “The California Music Teacher.” He was named a “Featured Artist-Educator” by the editors of the Piano Education Page, and his work was featured in a major article by the online journal Piano Forte News. He is in high demand as an adjudicator, and has served as such in countless competitions.
He has developed and maintains an award-winning private piano studio in Thousand Oaks. His students have performed and won honors in many local, state, national and international competitions. They have earned under-graduate and graduate degrees from the most prestigious music schools throughout the world, and now many former students are music professors at various universities around the country.
The Thousand Oaks Arts Commission presented him with its “Encore Award for Excellence in the Arts,” given to an individual who has made significant contributions to the cultural community of the city. He was presented the 2006 Presidential Scholar in the Arts Teacher Recognition Award by then Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium and the Kennedy Center Concert Hall in Washington DC. He founded and remains chairman of the Thousand Oaks Philharmonic, a non-profit educational organization, which produces concerts featuring the professional orchestra with exceptional young artists as soloists. Under the auspices of the TO Phil, he started HAMMERED! The High School Honors Piano Performance Seminar, inviting pre-college students to participate in a monthly series of lectures and master classes.