Known for her passion for performing and bringing community together through live music, Dr. Mary Vanhoozer is an active soloist and chamber musician. She began piano at age five with her father, an amateur pianist and professional theologian. At age nine, she was admitted to St. Mary's School of Music, an independent specialist music school in Edinburgh, Scotland, which offers both music and academic education to musically gifted children. It was there that she developed an enduring love of folk music and Scottish fiddling.
During her conservatory training in the United States, Vanhoozer performed in masterclasses for Leon Fleisher (at Cleveland Institute of Music) John Perry (at the Montecito Festival) and Imogen Cooper (at the Gilmore Festival.) She has appeared as a soloist with the Wheaton College Symphony Orchestra and the Lake Forest Symphony Orchestra. During her studies with lute performer and musicologist Paul O’Dette at the Eastman School of Music, she delved into the world of early music and Baroque performance practice, which deepened her love for the music of Bach. Her debut solo piano album - scheduled to be released this fall - will include the complete keyboard partitas of J. S. Bach and a newly commissioned Partita for Piano, by Argentinian-born composer Josh Rodriguez.
In 2014, Vanhoozer formed the Brahms' Ghost Trio, an outreach chamber music group invested in learning the classic repertoire for piano trio, as well as commissioning new music. In March 2016, the trio toured California over ten days, performing concerts and teaching masterclasses at various schools including Westmont College and Biola University.
In 2015, Vanhoozer produced her first album of original songs, Songs of Day and Night, which features the poetry of Christina Rossetti, Eugene Field, Robert Louis Stevenson, Shakespeare, and Emily Dickinson. This song collection represents Vanhoozer's diverse musical range; her choice of instruments (Scottish fiddle, mandolin, djembe, and hammered dulcimer) reveals her continued passion for folk music while the melodies themselves show an influence of early French and Spanish music. Vanhoozer continues to write songs with the goal of releasing a second album of original songs within the next couple of years.
Along with her husband, Vanhoozer directs music at New City Presbyterian Church in Royal Oak, MI. Vanhoozer has earned a BM from Wheaton College Conservatory, a MM from the Eastman School of Music, and a DMA from the Cleveland Institute of Music. Her music mentors are Peter Evans, Carol Honigberg, Dr. Daniel Paul Horn, Dr. Douglas Humpherys, and Dr. Daniel Shapiro.