China  I  16

“I believe that our music can never lie, because our hearts never lie, and music is something that is very close to the heart. Our true personality will show in our music, and what we try to hide in real life will show in our music; one’s music is a mirror of one’s life.”

Born in Shanghai, Xuanyan Jessie Gong has lived in New York for five years, attending the Waldorf School of Garden City and studying piano at Juilliard Pre-College with Ernest Barretta. She takes additional lessons with 2005 Cliburn Finalist Chu-Fang Huang and formerly studied with Matti Raekallio. Last year saw a first-prize finish in the senior division at the Kaufman Music Center International Piano Competition, as well as an appearance on NPR’s From the Top. She also took part in the Valissima Institute, a program for highly advanced female instrumentalists with a strong interest in conducting. Her dedication to music stems from her surety in its power: “I believe that music can invisibly cure people’s hearts, unite people through feelings, and make the world a much better place then it could have become.” She notes that participating in the Cliburn Junior has been her goal since elementary school; she looks forward to working with “some of the best musicians and the future leaders of classical music in the world.” Her interests outside of piano lie in both “all things mysterious, things like astronomy and physiology,” and the everyday—spending time with her brother and her friends and staying connected with her grandparents and friends in China.


Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in D Minor, BWV 875
CHOPIN  Ballade No. 1 in G Minor, op. 23
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in C Major, op. 33, no. 2
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in A Minor, op. 39, no. 6

Quarterfinal Round

CHOPIN Nocturne in E-flat Major, op. 55, no. 2
HAYDN Sonata in C Major, Hob. XVI:50 (I)
SCHUMANN Sonata No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 18 in E-flat Major, op. 31, no. 3
LIEBERMANN Impromptu, op. 68, no. 1
LISZT Rhapsodie espagnole

Final Round – Concerto 

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Minor, op. 37