Carrol Hillis studied piano at the University of Victoria, Canada, and received an Associateship to the Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto (A.R.C.T.). She also studied piano pedagogy at the Suzuki Institutes at Kingston, Ontario, and Stevens Point, Wisconsin. She has performed as a pianist and vocalist in Toronto and Ottawa, Canada.
In 1987, Carrol moved to Fairfield, Iowa, where she established a piano studio, emphasizing the Suzuki method, and including practical chording skills. Other musical activities include piano accompanying in various styles, composing, arranging and lyric-writing.
Says Carrol: “I’ve been fortunate to have some fine teachers: Barbara Torresen (particularly), Lillian Kitson (even when I didn’t practice) and Mary Ducker in British Columbia, all in classical piano. In jazz piano, Steve Hillis has been most helpful. I’m also lucky to have a wonderful voice teacher in Fairfield, Margaret Clair.”
She continues: “My parents generously supplied me with encouragement, lessons and good instruments, even when the budget was tight. I am also grateful to my husband, Steve Hillis, a kindred spirit, and a fountain of encouragement and musical knowledge.”