Members Only Music programs and evaluation opportunities at MTAC-SCCMTAC Members Only
Certificate of Merit

Certificate of Merit (CM) is a systematic music study program involving approximately 30,000 music students in annual evaluations throughout California. Sponsored by The Music Teachers’ Association of California ® (MTAC), this program is designed to develop the typical student, while simultaneously offering challenging opportunities for the advanced level student. Students who participate in CM benefit from a higher level educational opportunity by increasing musical aptitude, gaining self-confidence, and attaining advanced levels of musical achievement.

The new MTAC online system supports students’ musical endeavors in CM through a variety of tools and resources. Using web-based portals, teachers are able to efficiently manage their student roster and applications, while parents are able to view up-to-date information on their child’s application and progress.

The Certificate of Merit phase of the new online system launched in the late summer of 2016.

// Important CM Dates for 2016-2017

Friday, September 30 – Fall Information Meeting

October 1-31 – Enrollment of students on new Online System

October 1-January 15 – Enter repertoire online

November 1-10 – Parents pay on new Online System

Friday, December 2 – Teachers CM Repertoire Discussion

Saturday, March 18 – CM Evaluations Voice at St. Andrew Church

Saturday, March 19 – CM Evaluations Piano, Strings, Winds at UCSC

Sunday, April 2 – Branch Honors Recitals at St. Andrew Church


Student recitals

Student recitals are scheduled at approximately two month intervals and are open to students of branch member teachers. Recitals are free and open to the public, however a fee of $5.00 to performing students assists with recital costs.

Opus One Recital

Opus One provides an informal home performance opportunity for students with little recital experience. It is offered to students of all ages/instruments at CM prep level or equivalent, who might feel more comfortable performing in a home-like environment. These recitals are held in the studios or homes of participating MTAC teachers. Watch the monthly newsletter [or this website/link] for dates and locations. All guidelines for the standard MTAC Performances apply, and the $5.00 recital fee is required. At the discretion of the host, an informal reception may follow the performance. Teachers and parents who are willing to donate refreshments are much appreciated!

// Student Recital Dates for 2016-2017

Sunday, October 23 – Application deadline for November recital
Saturday, November 5Student Recital 2:30pm at the downtown Santa Cruz library

Thursday, January 19 – Application deadline for January recital
Sunday, January 29Student Recital 2:30pm at the downtown Santa Cruz library

Opus One Recital TBA


Celebrate Piano Ensemble (CPE)

Celebrate Piano Ensemble offers pianists an avenue to explore literature for one or two pianos, four or eight hands. The annual February concert in the superb Recital Hall of UCSC’s Music Center is a fund-raiser for the Talent Bank scholarships. Meetings during the year are open to all interested members and instruments, friends and students. Check the newsletter for event and meeting dates.

Munching with Mozart – Free concerts at the Public Library

‘MunchMo’ is a series of informal concerts in the meeting room of the Central Branch of the Santa Cruz Public Library. Concerts are co-sponsored by the Santa Cruz County Music Teachers and the FSCPL (Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries). These free concerts happen monthly on the 3rd Thursday and begin at 12:10 p.m. Performers are children and adult amateurs, as well as professional musicians. The only requirement is that the performances be at a level that will be enjoyed by a general audience. The attendance ranges from 45 to 60 people. Musicians donate their performances.
For more information contact Carol Panofsky at

// Preferred Dress

Hair should be arranged so that it does not fall into the face while performing.
Black concert attire is appropriate.

Dresses or skirts knee length or longer, or dressy slacks. (Skirts shorter than knee length should be accompanied by tights.)
Blouses or shirts completely covering midriff when performing.
Dress shoes (no athletic shoes or flip-flops).
Pianists: Try out shoes with piano pedals beforehand.

Collared dress shirt, dress slacks and nice shoes. Coat and tie welcome.
No athletic shoes or flip-flops.

**Dress guidelines apply to all Santa Cruz County Branch performances, including Certificate of Merit events.

// Not allowed

T-shirts, shorts, athletic team jerseys, jeans, bare midriffs, exposed underwear, form fitting camisoles or tank tops,
sloppy slide-on shoes including flip-flops.
We reserve the right to ask inappropriately dressed students not to perform.



  Plan to arrive a little early – allow more than enough time to find parking.
  Sit quietly while others perform.
  Performers should acknowledge the audience’s applause with a bow and smile before and after performing.
  PLAN TO STAY FOR THE ENTIRE RECITAL — if you must leave early, sit near the exit and leave between pieces.
  Parents, be prepared to take noisy younger siblings outside.