Graduate Student Spotlights

Marcus Ostermiller

Piano Studies

Briefly tell us why you chose your program:
I chose NYU Steinhardt for three reasons: 1) my private piano instructor Dr. Deirdre O'Donohue, 2) NYU's reputation as an academic and artistic power house, and 3) New York City... I have always dreamed of living here!
My favorite course:
piano lessons, of course!
My biggest challenge is:
yanking myself out of bed in the morning
My favorite blog:
Why I went to Graduate School:
to work with an incredible teacher and inch closer to that PhD
The worst gift I've ever received:
in high school, somebody left their fast food leftovers on the hood of my brown, less-than-glamorous plymouth horizon (nicknamed "the poo")
The most obscure research I've ever done:
for my 6th grade science fair project, i hypothesized that heating up a tennis ball in the microwave would NOT make it bounce higher. my hypothesis was correct.
The professor who influenced me the most:
alice rybak, piano department chair at the university of denver
What I do to de-stress:
read and/or watch trashy tabloid media
The place I would most like to visit is:
My secret passion is:
it wouldn't be a secret if i told you, now would it?
My favorite line from a song is:
"people talking without speaking; people hearing without listening; people writing songs that voices never shared, and no one dared disturb the sound of silence" - simon & garfunkel

Background Information

Where you grew up:
Littleton, Colorado
What are your plans after you graduate?
performing, pursuing a PhD in music, teaching music, and using my music for HIV/AIDS philanthropic causes (I'd love to start a non-profit organization)
Honors, Awards, and Achievements:
Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Scholar Visiting Student, University of Oxford First Place, Colorado State Federation Piano Competition Pi Kappa Lambda Music Honor Society My mother's Favorite Child
Community Service and Other Activities:
HIV/AIDS philanthropy (fundraising, youth education, benefit concert planning) Vice President, University of Denver HIV/AIDS Awareness Committee Vice President, Denver Area Music Teachers Association (local chapter of MTNA)