Tish has composed nearly four hundred pieces for her students and her audio recordings. She studied and practiced piano for eleven years with private instructors. The last four years of lessons were musically advanced classical piano performance. Her last two years of piano instruction were with professors at Muskingum College, Muskingum, Ohio and at West Liberty University, West Liberty, West Virginia. She practiced the piano eight to ten hours per day in her last year of classical music instruction.
Tish has over four decades of teaching experience and her annual Spring Pageant with her students is not a typical recital. It is held at a theatre and Tish, as well as the students wear costumes for the presentation. In addition to the piano and vocal performances there is the occasional anecdote from Tish’s past or student lesson time. Sometimes a skit is included to add an element of surprise and diversity.
Tish recalls her first public performance at age ten as a participant in her school’s annual spring event. Instead of
Tish was born in her grandmother’s house in Bowerston, Ohio, February 19, 1950 and though she is more than one-half century old she is as active as a twenty-seven year old. She says, “You can’t call me old until I am one hundred.”
taking a bow at the end of her performance she walked off the stage with her index finger in her mouth.
She now coaches and rehearses her students on stage presence.
As a child she grew up in Scio, Ohio, a small community in Harrison County, Ohio. When she was nine years old she wanted to take piano lessons and ballet lessons. Her parents could not afford both, so she had to choose. Little did she know that her decision for piano would develop into a lifelong passion and profession.
Growing up in the ‘50’s was very different from today. There were no electronic games and personal computers. Therefore, Tish spent her summer vacation doing creative projects such as writing stage plays and recruiting the neighborhood kids to perform with her. The family parlor had an adjoining room divided with draperies… the perfect setting for a stage. Once the play was polished, she would charge the parents a nickel to see the show and to cover refreshments.
One of Tish’s favorite childhood hobbies was to make paper dresses with her mother’s freezer paper. As an adult she has made dozens of costumes for her performances, for her children, and for her students.
Piano is not the only instrument that Tish plays. She began playing clarinet in the fourth grade. In addition to playing clarinet in her high school band, she was also a member of the clarinet quartet. She played clarinet on the recording of the song “You Give Me Love” which is part of the “Simply Soothing” album. She also played baritone saxophone in concert band and the high school dance band. She played her alto saxophone on the recording of “It Ain’t Enough” which can be found with the “Simply Soothing” collection. She co-wrote the song with her good friend Dennis Wilson. Dennis brain-stormed the concept and the lyrics for the song and Tish wrote the music. Tish’s devotion to her high school band brought her the John Phillip Sousa Award which is bestowed upon the person who contributes the most to the band.
High School was quite musically busy for Tish with band, the clarinet quartet, the dance band, and the choir. She not only sang in the choir, she was also the piano accompanist for their performances.
Tish was the head majorette in the marching band her senior year of high school. When she graduated she did not want to give up baton twirling so she organized and taught her own drill team of baton twirlers, flag twirlers, and rifle twirlers. She sewed sixty of the costumes for the “Stars and Stripes” who marched in Uncle Sam outfits and Colonial Soldier attire. She also arranged the music for the flute and bell lyre players. JT and Joe Thompson provided the rhythm for the group. Tish was very fortunate to have their expertise on the drums. To quote Tish, “They were marvelous!” The “Stars and Stripes” won over sixty trophies as well as other awards in seven years of parades and competitions.
At age twenty-seven Tish changed her focus from a classical music repertoire to a contemporary repertoire. Using the photographic memory that she developed through her classical music training she memorized eight hours of popular music and began a new adventure by performing at resorts, hotels, piano bars, and restaurants. She has done the traveling musician thing and has been in the same room with celebrities or had near misses with them. Once while performing at the Walthall Hotel in Jackson, Mississippi, a Russian gentleman who was a member of Mikhail Baryshnikov’s party, placed a tip in her jar and commented, “You are a dream weaver.” Tish says, “That was the nicest compliment I have ever received.” Thus, the name of this web site, “Tish Your Weaver Of Dreams”. After twenty-five years of entertaining audiences at the aforementioned venues Tish retired from the perpetual performance schedule. She is quite content to just perform at the annual Spring Pageant and the three Community Service Performances per year with her students.
At fifty-nine years old, Tish bought a drum set and took lessons for four and one-half years. So how many instruments does she play? Let’s see… piano, drums, clarinet, saxophone, ocarina, and don’t forget… the voice is considered an instrument.
Tish stays quite busy with her students, composing all of the music for their spring pageants, and building stage sets. She has more tools than most of her men friends.
Stick around. You’re invited to dance with Tish at her one hundred fifth birthday party.