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Member of the Year
2000-2001, 2008-2009, 2014-2015, 2019-2020

About Amy Jo Sawyer

Amy Jo Sawyer joined MTNA in 1978 and became a Nationally Certified Teacher Member in 1989.  Sawyer, who received an MA in Jazz Performance and BA in Piano Performance and Composition, is past president, Certification Chair, AIM Chair for the ISMTA Gateway Arch Eash chapter.  She was Chapter "Member of the Year" 2000, 2014, and 2019, and received the ISMTA Composer Commissioning Award in 2014.  She was voted ISMTA Teacher of the Year in 2019.  She served five years on the ISMTA Board as the Composer commissioning Program Chair. The Salt Creek Chapter (Chicago) commissioned her to write piano music for "Eight Hands" for their Glorious Grands concert in 2017, for which she composed a three-movement "Sweet Salt Creek Suite".  She composed charts for eighteen-piece jazz bands that were performed by the Brigham Young University "Syntheses" Band, and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Concert Jazz Band.  Her piano students have participated in the AIM program finishing level twelve with high honors.  Several students have won competitions in Ragtime Contest in St. Louis. One compositions students won 2nd place and tied for 3rd place in consecutive years in the Hal Leonard Composer competition.  Eighteen of her original piano composition are approved for the AIM Repertoire Program.  

Amy Jo served as President (two terms) for the Accordionists & Teachers Guild, International and is currently serving on a committee to develop a Syllabus program for the accordion.  She composed eighteen songs for the Syllabus.  Sawyer is an accordionist with the St. Louis Symphony and performed "Italian Love Songs" accompanying Luciano Pavarotti when he performed in St. Louis.  She also performed with the St Louis Symphony orchestra as an accordionist supporting the movies "Ratatouille", "The Godfather", and "The Lord of the Rings".  Her original Accordion ORchestra, solos, and duets have been performed internationally.  She had performed in an accordion orchestra and as a soloist in many European countries, including Russia, Australia, and New Zealand.  Her accordion orchestra composition, Tango, "Recuerdos" (Memories), was performed at the World Accordion Festival in Lithuania in 2018.  Another, "Juntos" (Together) Tango, was performed in Castelfidardo, Italy in 2012. Sawyer has produced two accordion CD's: "According to Amy" (Jazz) and "Classically Amy" (Classical).  In July 2019, she was inducted into the Accordionists & Teachers Guild, INternational Accordion Hall of Fame.  She has served as organist and music chair of her church and maintains a studio teaching piano, accordion, jazz, theory and composition.