Adult Piano Retreats

Retreats are back!
Join us October 16-20, 2022 

Inspiring and supportive instruction for adult amateur pianists

Icicle Creek Center for the Arts offers adult, amateur pianists an exciting opportunity to experience four memorable days of inspiring and supportive instruction and performance in a spectacular retreat setting in the Cascade Mountains near Leavenworth, Washington. The immersive program includes scheduled private lessons, private practice, master classes, individualized movement assessments, group Alexander Technique sessions, special topics, gourmet dining, optional outdoor activities and a faculty concert in Snowy Owl Theater.

No audition necessary. Limited to 12 participants.

Health & Safety

  • All participants and staff must be fully vaccinated with booster(s). Participants will be asked to provide proof of vaccination at retreat check-in.
  • All participants and staff will be asked to take an antigen rapid test daily (provided by Icicle Creek), starting Sunday at check-in.
  • COVID precautions throughout the week will be based on the current guidelines from the CDC, State of WA, and Chelan County Health Department.

$650 per person per retreat registration fee (includes 3 private lessons, 1 ticket to faculty concert, 2 master classes, 3 special topic sessions, and individualized physical assessments.

Registration requires a $325 deposit.  See cancellation policy below for details.

First come, first served basis. Once cabins are filled, alternate lodging in the area is available to you at your own expense.

$150/night single occupancy, $75/night double occupancy in cabins at the Icicle Creek Center for the Arts. Limited spaces – first come first served basis. Sharing cabins (double occupancy) is encouraged.

Lodging will not be included in your registration total. Payment for lodging will be billed separately after housing assignments are finalized.

$260 for catered meals including four breakfasts, four lunches, and four dinners; hors d’oeuvres at BYOB social hour; coffee/tea service and healthy snacks.

Other no-host options include conveniently located O’Grady’s Pantry and numerous restaurants/delicatessens in nearby downtown Leavenworth. Sleeping Lady’s Grotto bar available for cocktail hour and evening festivities (no host) and is within walking distance.

  • Steinway D concert grand
  • Steinway L
  • Kawai concert grand
  • Kawai grand
  • Yamaha grand
  • Kimball grand
  • Steinway K upright
  • Steinway Model 40 upright
  • Chickering spinet

Check in at 3 PM on day one, check out by 2 PM on day five. Retreat includes a final, participant’s private sharing of music followed by box lunch on day five.

  • $325 deposit required with registration.
  • Full refund less $50 processing fee 20 days or more before the session start date, after which no refund is given.
  • Balance due by October 3, 2022.


New-music pianist Jesse Myers with his expert guidance on exploring the piano with a fresh perspective; learn to deconstruct music to see it in a new light, enliven music by alluding to imaginative sounds and textures, discover a brand-new you by letting go of apprehensions and surrendering to the music.

Born into a family of professional musicians, Rachel Matthews teaching reflects her lifelong immersion in the expressive language of the classical repertoire. She seeks to make this language her own and will encourage you to do the same! She brings an emphasis on building artistry and expression, as well as a passion for cultivating creative & effective practice skills for all stages of learning and performance.

Movement and wellness coach and assistant director Gayle Holeton encourages mindful exploration into optimal use of the body’s design for more ease, agility, strength and balance for pianists. An experienced private piano teacher, she embraces a teaching philosophy filled with humor and the joy of learning which she describes as “exploring a person’s boundaries to expand and live fully.”

Director Lisa Bergman enjoys exploring humor and enjoyment at the keyboard as a welcome balance to the demands of practice and the challenge of learning processes.   She advocates playing “for fun” whenever possible and encourages involvement with other musicians.  She focuses on expediting learning by embracing mindful, thorough practice.

Lisa B SOMA photo

Lisa Bergman

Program Director
A passionate promoter of classical music, Lisa Bergman is a national Gracie Award-winning radio announcer on Classic KING-FM streaming worldwide. A concert pianist specializing in collaborative piano and chamber music she is a graduate of the Juilliard School, Stony Brook University and the University of Washington, cum laude. A former member of the University of Washington Music Faculty, her discography includes six CDs.

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Jesse Myers (3)

Jesse Myers

October Faculty
Seattle-based pianist Jesse Myers is an adventurous explorer of music that expands the possibilities of the piano. With a strong interest in performance that pushes piano music into new realms, Myers frequently performs music for prepared piano, new music for piano and electronics, as well as traditional classical literature in nontraditional settings. His solo concerts have been featured on King FM, Seattle Magazine, City Arts Magazine, Second Inversion, Seattle Weekly…

The Live Music Project, and regularly appear in The Stranger’s curated best concerts. His recent work with the prepared piano and electroacoustic music has led to tours across the country including artist residencies and solo guest performances at universities, conservatories, and music festivals.

Mr. Myers has chosen the vocation of being a lifetime student of the piano and tireless teacher of its techniques and repertoire. He is on the faculty at Holy Names Academy and runs a thriving studio from his home in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood comprised primarily of adult classical pianists making a return to the piano.

Jesse Myers has a Master of Music degree from the University of Washington in piano performance. He also attended Bowling Green State University, where he earned his Bachelor of Music in piano performance.

Rachel Matthews

Rachel Matthews

October Faculty
Pianist & composer Rachel Matthews has performed across the US, Canada and Europe, including at the the 92nd Street Y in New York, the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, DC, and on the Accueil Musical series in Paris. She served for nine years as co-Artistic Director of the Foothills Chamber Music Festival, presenting chamber music performances with principal players of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra and other major American ensembles.

Increasingly active in recent years as a composer, her works have been heard across the US and at venues including the International Viola Congress, the Fondazione Ambrosianeum in Milan and the Espoo Music College in Finland. Rachel was winner in 2010 of the Maurice Gardner Composition Competition and the International Music Prize for Excellence in Composition, and she is recipient of numerous grants and commissions. A full-length CD of her works, entitled “Dreams” (Centaur, 2012), was described by critic Laurence Vittes as “exquisite….one of those miracles in which a new musical vision is defined” (Strings, November 2012). Rachel is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory and the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, and holds a doctorate in piano performance from the Peabody Conservatory. She maintains a vibrant and active teaching studio in Seattle.

Gayle Holeton

Gayle Holeton

Assistant Director / Movement & Wellness Coach
An educator, private piano studio professional and Nia Black Belt teacher. She practices in Alexander Technique, Feldenkrais, Yoga, Martial Arts and Dance. Retreat focus will be mindful exploration into optimal use of the body’s design, for more ease, agility, strength and balance for pianists.