Elizabeth Grimpo graduated from Concordia University-Chicago, magna cum laude (1999), with a degree in Music Education and a certificate in Piano Pedagogy. She was named student laureate of her graduating class. While a student at CUC, she studied piano with Julia Hennig, organ with Steven Wente, and piano pedagogy with Craig Sale. She also appeared as a soloist with the Concordia Wind Symphony, under the direction of Richard Fisher, performing Lendvay’s Piano Concertino and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue.
Grimpo earned her Master of Music (2001) and Doctor of Musical Arts (2006) degrees in piano performance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. While a student at UNL, she studied piano with Paul Barnes, organ with Quentin Faulkner, and piano pedagogy with Joan Riest. In 2006, she won the graduate concerto competition, earning the opportunity to perform the first movement of Saint-Saëns’ Second Piano Concerto in G Minor with the UNL Symphony Orchestra.
Grimpo is a Professor of Music at Concordia University-Nebraska. She teaches Aural Skills I, II, III, and IV, Music Appreciation, and private piano lessons. She also does the majority of the accompanying for student and faculty performances. Additionally, she organizes and performs in a Faculty Showcase Recital every fall, an annual Chamber Recital (for faculty and student collaborations), and an annual themed recital (for students). She regularly collaborates with her colleagues at CUNE and has given several solo recitals as well, performing piano music of Bach, Chopin, Debussy, Dello Joio, Haydn, Hensel, Mendelssohn, Oquin, Scarlatti, Schubert, C. Schumann, and R. Schumann. In 2015, she was named Outstanding Teacher of the Year at CUNE’s commencement ceremonies.
Some of Grimpo’s recent solo and collaborative performances are highlighted here: In 2008, she gave the dedicatory recital for a new Steinway piano at Pacific Hills Lutheran Church in Omaha, as part of their Classical Sundays series. In 2011, she gave live piano performances of Beethoven and Debussy for Nebraska Public Radio’s Classics By Request broadcast. She has also made several appearances with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra as a substitute musician. In 2014, she was a featured recitalist at the Lecture in Church Music series, held on the campus of Concordia University-Chicago. In the spring of 2017, she performed Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel’s large-scale piano cycle, Das Jahr, at several locations in Lincoln, NE, and also at Hastings College in Nebraska, Wayland Baptist University in Texas, and Adams State University in Colorado. She was one of two alumni invited to perform at UNL’s “Lisztomania” celebration concert in the fall of 2017, performing Liszt’s virtuosic transcription of Schubert’s art song, Gretchen am spinrade. She served as the pianist for all live auditions and a masterclass for the Midwest region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council, held in Lincoln in 2018. In April of 2018, she collaborated with undergraduate and graduate voice students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to give the world premiere of Chris Miller’s April Twilights, a large-scale song cycle featuring the writings of Willa Cather. In the spring of 2019, she toured with the CUNE A Cappella choir, culminating in a recording session, which included a hymn inspired piano solo that can be found on FaceBook. In September of 2019, she performed the Tchaikovsky violin concerto with international violinist, Teimuraz Janiskashvili. She presented a solo recital at the 2019 Lectures in Church Music conference on the campus of Concordia University-Chicago, performing music of Scarlatti, Lasser, Poulenc, Bach/Siloti, Oquin, and two commissioned works by David von Kampen.
Grimpo has been involved in the Seward Worship Conferences for the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod in 2011, 2014, and the summer of 2017, leading sacred piano reading sessions and workshops on effective accompanying for church choirs, using the piano for congregational singing, and involving young musicians in worship. Her My First Hymnal, accompaniment edition was published by Concordia Publishing House in 2013. She is also a main contributor for the Hymns of the Season piano series published by David’s Harp Music – A Center for Musical Development. Every volume within the series contains nine hymns, and each hymn has four pedagogically graded settings, starting with a beginning level teacher/student duet and progressing to an intermediate level that is slightly easier than the hymnal. These resources have been favorably received by many.
Additionally, she is a regular organist at Christ Lincoln – A Lutheran Ministry in Lincoln, Nebraska. She and her husband, Phil, have four daughters and make their home in Lincoln.
Hear Dr. Grimpo's Recent Performances
Dr. Elizabeth Grimpo's Academic Programs
A degree in music education from Concordia University, Nebraska prepares you to teach vocal and instrumental music to students K-12 in Lutheran, Christian, private or public schools. Some music teachers instruct students in a certain instrument, while others teach general music classes.
As a music major at Concordia University, Nebraska, you will participate in ensembles, either choral or instrumental or both, as part of the requirements for your major. Since ensemble participation doesn’t necessarily factor into your official course load, you may find that you have more opportunities within your schedule to take additional electives that interest you to help round out your career options.
A degree in church music from Concordia University, Nebraska prepares you to lead and direct music in both traditional and contemporary worship settings. The degree also leads to rostered status in The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod as a director of parish music for individuals who are members of an LCMS congregation.