2022 Cliburn Competition

SIXTEENTH VAN CLIBURN INTERNATIONAL PIANO COMPETITION
JUNE 2–18, 2022

VAN CLIBURN CONCERT HALL AT TCU • BASS PERFORMANCE HALL
FORT WORTH, TEXAS, USA

Marin Alsop, jury chairman

 

AWARDS AND PRIZES

Beverley Taylor Smith Award for Best Performance of a New Work: Yunchan Lim ($5,000)
Best Performance of a Mozart Concerto: Ilya Shmukler ($5,000)
John Giordano Jury Chairman Discretionary Award: Marcel Tadokoro ($5,000)
Raymond E. Buck Jury Discretionary Award: Changyong Shin ($5,000)
Patricia and Neal Steffen Family Jury Discretionary Award: Andrew Li ($5,000)
Carla and Kelly Thompson Audience Award presented by Medici.tv
: Yunchan Lim ($2,500)

WINNERS’ UPDATES

YUNCHAN LIM  Yunchan’s debut with the New York Philharmonic in May 2023 was named a Critics’ Pick by The New York Times, and led them to call his performance of Rachmaninov’s Concerto No. 3 a “literal” dream: “the juxtaposition of precise clarity and expansive reverie; the vivid scenes and bursts of wit; the sense of contrasting yet organically developing moods; the endless and persuasive bendings of time—the qualities that tend to characterize nighttime wanderings of the mind.” As the Evening Standard noted following his Wigmore debut: “We’re at the start of something special.” Yunchan signed with Decca Classics in October 2023 and continues touring in 2024–2025.

ANNA GENIUSHENE  Accolades ensued for the silver medalist—Musical America named her Young Artist of the Month in July 2022 and Pianist magazine featured her on the cover in June 2023—and invitations from well-respected institutions followed. Anna’s newest album—a deeply personal project of lullabies spanning from John Field and Liszt to Dutilleux and Weinberg—is released in September 2023, and she is set to record a duo disc with her husband and frequent collaborator, pianist Lukas Geniušas, for release next year on the Alpha label. She will join the roster of the Bowers Program of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center for 2024–2027. She currently resides in Lithuania with her husband and their two young sons.

DMYTRO CHONI  Forthcoming highlights for Dmytro include recital and chamber music debuts at Vienna Konzerthaus, recital debuts in Lucerne and Hamburg, and a return to the Palau de la Música, Barcelona for a solo recital. During the 2023–24 season he will give recitals with violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann in Munich and Milan, among others. Dmytro regularly appears as soloist with renowned orchestras, such as the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, and Ukraine National Symphony. His debut album was released by Naxos in 2020, containing works from the 20th century by Debussy, Ginastera, Ligeti and Prokofiev, receiving a “Supersonic Award” by Pizzicato magazine. He is currently studying with Prof. Dr. Milana Chernyavska at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz.

CLAYTON STEPHENSON  Recent and upcoming highlights of Clayton’s burgeoning career include appearances with the Calgary Philharmonic, Chicago Sinfonietta, and the Fort Worth, Louisville, Lansing and North Carolina Symphony Orchestras; as well as recitals at the Phillips Collection Concert Series in Washington, DC, Foundation Louis Vuitton Auditorium in Paris, Bad Kissinger Sommer Festival and BeethovenFest in Germany, Colour of Music Festival, Ravinia Festival and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.  He has been featured on NPR, WUOL, and WQXR, and appeared in the “GRAMMY® Salute to Classical Music” Concert at Carnegie’s Stern Auditorium. He now studies in the Harvard-NEC Dual Degree Program, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in economics at Harvard and a master’s degree in piano performance at the New England Conservatory under Wha Kyung Byun.

ILYA SHMUKLER  Ilya is a laureate of many international piano competitions, taking top prizes at the New York Virtuoso, Lewisville Lake Symphony, Artist Presentation Society (St. Louis), Shigeru Kawai (Tokyo), Sсriabin–Rachmaninov (Bulgaria), and Rachmaninov (St. Petersburg) Competitions. In 2021, he won the Carnegie Weill Recital Hall Debut Audition and made his New York debut at the venerated venue on December 13, 2022. He completed his master’s degree with honors at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory in 2021, under the guidance of Elena Kuznetsova and Sergey Kuznetsov. Presently, he studies with 2001 Cliburn Gold Medalist Stanislav Ioudenitch at the International Center for Music at Park University in Parkville, Missouri.

ULADZISLAU KHANDOHI  Uladzislau has became a laureate of many international competitions, releasing a solo album with Melodiya. Since 2020, Uladzislau has been a student at the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory, studying with Professor Natalia Trull. He has toured in Belarus, Russia, Spain, Italy and France. He most recently won the 2021 editions of the Ferrol International Piano Competition in Spain and the Sanremo International Piano Competition in Italy. Uladzislau is a scholarship student of the Yuri Rozum International Charitable Foundation.


JURY

Marin Alsop, chairman (United States)
Jean-Efflam Bavouzet (France)
Alessio Bax (Italy)
Rico Gulda (Austria)
Andreas Haefliger (Switzerland)
Stephen Hough (United Kingdom)
Anne-Marie McDermott (United States)
Orli Shaham (Israel/United States)
Lilya Zilberstein (Germany)
Wu Han (China Taiwan/United States)

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Conductors: Nicholas McGegan (Semifinal Round), Marin Alsop (Final Round)
Orchestra: Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra
Commissioned Work: Stephen Hough, Fanfare Toccata

The Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra

THE FORT WORTH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

The Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra under Music Director Robert Spano is deeply committed to uniting its community through performance, education, and outreach, reaching an audience of more than 200,000 annually. Since its beginnings in 1912, the FWSO has been an essential thread in the city’s cultural fabric and the very foundation of Fort Worth’s performing arts. The FWSO has performed at Carnegie Hall and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of SHIFT: A Festival of American Orchestras. The FWSO has released 13 recordings – with several being world premiere releases – garnering international acclaim. The FWSO has embraced creative collaborations through residencies, partnerships, and commissions. As the principal resident company of the acoustically superb Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall, the Orchestra performs a full season of concerts featuring internationally acclaimed guest artists and works by living composers. The Orchestra performs and partners with the Texas Ballet Theater, Fort Worth Opera, The Cliburn, and Performing Arts Fort Worth. Each summer at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, the FWSO presents Concerts In The Garden – a series of family-friendly concerts that have become a city-wide tradition. The FWSO keeps exceptional musical experiences at the heart of its community. For more information, visit fwsymphony.org.

Gabriela Montero

GABRIELA MONTERO
Composer of the Commissioned Work

Gabriela Montero has been commissioned to compose a new work for the 2025 Cliburn Competition, to be performed by all 30 competitors, as well as serve as a member of the jury. This marks the third time that the composer of the commissioned work will also serve on the jury.

Gabriela Montero’s visionary interpretations and unique compositional gifts have garnered her critical acclaim and a devoted following on the world stage. Anthony Tommasini remarked in The New York Times that “Montero’s playing had everything: crackling rhythmic brio, subtle shadings, steely power…soulful lyricism…unsentimental expressivity.”

The 2023–2024 season will feature performances of her own “Latin Concerto” on an extensive U.S. tour with Mexico City’s Orquesta Sinfónica de Minería and Carlos Miguel Prieto, as well as with the New World Symphony (Stéphane Denève), Polish National Radio Symphony (Marin Alsop), Antwerp Symphony (Elim Chan), and National Arts Centre Orchestra (Alexander Shelley), the latter with which she continues a flourishing four-year creative partnership through 2025. In May 2024, she also makes her highly anticipated return to Los Angeles to work with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and Jaime Martín.

Ms. Montero’s other recent highlights include a European tour with the City of Birmingham Symphony and Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, as well as debuts with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, and the Minnesota Orchestra, where “Montero’s gripping performance…made a case that she might become the classical scene’s next great composer/pianist” (Star Tribune). Other recent highlights include residencies with the Sao Paolo Symphony, Prague Radio Symphony, Basel Symphony, and at the (partially COVID-disrupted) Rheingau Festival; debuts at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall, New York’s 92nd Street Y, Paris’ Philharmonie and La Seine Musicale, and the London Piano Festival at King’s Place; and the launch of “Gabriela Montero at Prager,” an ongoing artistic residency established at the Prager Family Center for the Arts in Easton, Maryland.

Celebrated for her exceptional musicality and ability to improvise, she has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras to date, including the New York, Royal Liverpool, Rotterdam, Dresden, Oslo, Vienna Radio, Naples, and Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestras; the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, Zürcher Kammerorchester, and Academy of St Martin in the Fields; and the Yomiuri Nippon, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, Toronto, Baltimore, Oregon, Dallas, Vienna, Barcelona, Lucerne, and Sydney Symphony Orchestras; the Belgian National Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin, and Residentie Orkest.

A graduate and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, Ms. Montero is also a frequent recitalist and chamber musician, having given concerts at such distinguished venues as Wigmore Hall, Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Vienna Konzerthaus, Berlin Philharmonie, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Cologne Philharmonie, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Munich Herkulessaal, Sydney Opera House, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Luxembourg Philharmonie, Lisbon Gulbenkian Museum, Manchester Bridgewater Hall, Seoul’s LG Arts Centre, Hong Kong City Hall, and the National Concert Hall in Taipei, and at the Barbican’s “Sound Unbound,” London Piano, Edinburgh, Salzburg, SettembreMusica in Milan and Turin, Enescu, Lucerne, Ravinia, Colorado, Gstaad, Saint-Denis, Violon sur le Sable, Aldeburgh, Cheltenham, Rheingau, Ruhr, Trondheim, Bergen, and Lugano Festivals.

An award-winning and bestselling recording artist, her most recent album, released in autumn 2019 on the Orchid Classics label, features her own “Latin Concerto” and Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major, recorded with the Orchestra of the Americas in Frutillar, Chile. Her previous recording on Orchid Classics features Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and her first orchestral composition, Ex Patria, winning her her first Latin Grammy® for Best Classical Album. Others include Bach and Beyond, which held the top spot on the Billboard Classical Charts for several months and garnered her two Echo Klassik Awards: the 2006 Keyboard Instrumentalist of the Year and 2007 Award for Classical Music without Borders. In 2008, she also received a Grammy® nomination for her album Baroque, and in 2010 she released Solatino, a recording inspired by her Venezuelan homeland and devoted to works by Latin American composers.

Ms. Montero made her formal debut as a composer with Ex Patria, a tone poem designed to illustrate and protest Venezuela’s descent into lawlessness, corruption, and violence. The piece was premiered in 2011 by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Her first full-length composition, Piano Concerto No. 1, the “Latin Concerto,” was first performed in 2016 at the Leipzig Gewandhaus with the MDR Sinfonieorchester and Kristjan Järvi, and subsequently recorded and filmed with the Orchestra of the Americas for the ARTE Konzert channel.

Winner of the 4th International Beethoven Award, Gabriela Montero is a committed advocate for human rights, whose voice regularly reaches beyond the concert hall. She was named an Honorary Consul by Amnesty International in 2015 and recognized with Outstanding Work in the Field of Human Rights by the Human Rights Foundation for her ongoing commitment to human rights advocacy in Venezuela. In January 2020, she was invited to give the Dean’s Lecture at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute and has spoken and performed twice at the World Economic Forum in Davos. She was also awarded the 2012 Rockefeller Award for her contribution to the arts and was a featured performer at Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Inauguration.

Born in Venezuela, she started her piano studies at age 4, making her concerto debut at age 8 in her hometown of Caracas. This led to a scholarship from the government to study privately in the United States and then at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Hamish Milne.

gabrielamontero.com

Carlos Miguel Prieto

Carlos Miguel Prieto
Semifinal Round Conductor

Known for his charisma and expressive interpretations, Mexican conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto has established himself not just as a major figure in the orchestra world but also as an influential cultural leader, educator, and a champion of new music. In a significant career development, he will start his tenure as Music Director of the North Carolina Symphony at the beginning of the 2023–24 season.

From 2007 to 2022, he was the Music Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de México, the country’s leading ensemble, and significantly raised the caliber of the orchestra. He was also Music Director of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra from 2006 to 2023, where he helped lead the cultural renewal of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. In 2008, he was appointed Music Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Minería, an orchestra with great tradition in Mexico now in its 45th season.

Recent highlights include engagements with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, NDR Elbphilharmonie, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, the Hallé, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Spanish National Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Strasbourg Philharmonic, and Auckland Philharmonia.

Prieto is in demand as a guest conductor with many of the top North American orchestras, including Cleveland, Dallas, Toronto, Minnesota, Washington, New World, and Houston Symphony, and has enjoyed a particularly successful relationship with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the North Carolina Symphony.

Prieto made his hugely successful BBC Proms debut at Royal Albert Hall on August 5, 2023.

Since 2002, alongside Gustavo Dudamel, Prieto has conducted the Orchestra of the Americas, which draws young musicians from the entire American continent. A staunch proponent of music education, Prieto served as Principal Conductor of the YOA from its inception until 2011 when he was appointed Music Director. In 2018 he conducted the orchestra on a tour of European summer festivals, which included performances at the Rheingau and Edinburgh festivals as well as Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie. He has also worked regularly with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and the NYO2 in New York.

Prieto is renowned for championing Latin American music as well as his dedication to new music. He has conducted over 100 world premieres of works by Mexican and American composers, many of which were commissioned by him. Prieto places equal importance on championing works by Black and African American composers such as Florence Price, Margaret Bonds, and Courtney Bryan, among others.

Prieto has an extensive discography that includes Deutsche Gramophone (nominated for three Grammys) Naxos and Sony labels. Prieto was recognized by Musical America as the 2019 Conductor of the Year. A graduate of Princeton and Harvard universities, Prieto studied conducting with Jorge Mester, Enrique Diemecke, Charles Bruck, and Michael Jinbo.

Marin Alsop

Marin Alsop
Final Round Conductor

One of the foremost conductors of our time, Marin Alsop represents a powerful and inspiring voice. Convinced that music has the power to change lives, she is internationally recognized for her innovative approach to programming and audience development, deep commitment to education, and championing of music’s importance in the world. The first woman to serve as the head of a major orchestra in the United States, South America, Austria, and Britain, she is, as The New York Times put it, not only “a formidable musician and a powerful communicator” but also “a conductor with a vision.”

The 2023–2024 season marks Alsop’s fifth as chief conductor of the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, which she leads at Vienna’s Musikverein and Konzerthaus, as well as on recordings, broadcasts, and international tours; her first as artistic director & chief conductor of the Polish National Radio Symphony; and her first as principal guest conductor of London’s Philharmonia Orchestra. She also holds positions as chief conductor of the Ravinia Festival, where she curates and conducts the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s annual summer residency, and as the first music director of the National Orchestral Institute + Festival (NOI+F) at the University of Maryland, where she launched a new academy for young conductors and leads the NOI+F Philharmonic each June.

A full decade after becoming the first female conductor of London’s Last Night of the Proms, Alsop makes history again in September 2023, as both the first woman and the first American to guest conduct three Last Nights in the festival’s 128-year history. In spring 2024, she makes her company debut at the Metropolitan Opera, leading John Adams’s oratorio El Niño in a fully staged new production starring Julia Bullock and Davóne Tines. Other 2023–2024 highlights include a new production of Bernstein’s Candide with the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony, an all-American program to inaugurate her four-season Philharmonia appointment, Penderecki’s seldom-heard opera The Black Mask with the Polish National Radio Symphony, and returns to the podiums of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France and Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.

In 2021, Alsop assumed the title of music director laureate and OrchKids Founder of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, which she continues to conduct each season. During her outstanding 14-year tenure as its music director, she led the orchestra on its first European tour in 13 years, released multiple award-winning recordings, and conducted more than two dozen world premieres, as well as founding OrchKids, its groundbreaking music education program for Baltimore’s most disadvantaged youth. In 2019, after seven years as music director, Alsop became conductor of Honour of Brazil’s São Paulo Symphony Orchestra (OSESP), with which she continues to undertake major projects each season. Deeply committed to new music, she was music director of California’s Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music for 25 years, leading 174 premieres.

Alsop has longstanding relationships with the London Philharmonic and London Symphony Orchestras, and regularly guest conducts such major international ensembles as the Cleveland Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Budapest Festival Orchestra, and Orchestre de Paris, besides leading the La Scala Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and others. In collaboration with YouTube and Google Arts & Culture, she spearheaded the “Global Ode to Joy” (GOTJ), a crowd-sourced video project to celebrate Beethoven’s 250th anniversary in 2020.

Recognized with BBC Music “Album of the Year” and EMMY® nominations in addition to GRAMMY®, Classic BRIT and Gramophone awards, Alsop’s discography comprises more than 200 titles. These include recordings for Decca, Harmonia Mundi and Sony Classical, as well as her acclaimed Naxos cycles of Brahms with the London Philharmonic, Dvořák with the Baltimore Symphony, and Prokofiev with the São Paulo Symphony. Recent releases include a live account of Candide with the London Symphony Orchestra & Chorus; a Kevin Puts collection with the Baltimore Symphony; and the first installment of a complete Schumann symphonic cycle for Naxos with the Vienna RSO.

The first and only conductor to receive a MacArthur Fellowship, Alsop has also been honored with the World Economic Forum’s Crystal Award. Amongst many other awards and academic positions, she served as both 2021-2022 Harman/Eisner Artist-in-Residence of the Aspen Institute Arts Program and 2020 Artist-in-Residence at Vienna’s University of Music and Performing Arts; is director of graduate conducting at the Johns Hopkins University’s Peabody Institute; and holds honorary doctorates from Yale University and the Juilliard School. To promote and nurture the careers of her fellow female conductors, in 2002, she founded the Taki Concordia Conducting Fellowship, which was renamed in her honor as the Taki Alsop Conducting Fellowship in 2020. The Conductor, a documentary about her life, debuted at New York’s 2021 Tribeca Film Festival and has subsequently been broadcast on PBS television, screened at festivals and in theaters nationwide, and recognized with the Naples International Film Festival’s 2021 Focus on the Arts Award.

Roberto Plano

Roberto Plano – Italy/United States
2005 Cliburn Finalist

Italian native Roberto Plano has performed all over the world, appearing with prestigious orchestras (Kremerata Baltica, Houston Symphony, Berliner Philarmoniker Camerata, Festival Strings Luzern) under the direction of renowned conductors such as Sir Neville Marriner, James Conlon, Pinchas Zuckerman, and Miguel Harth-Bedoya. As a recitalist he played at Lincoln Center, Sala Verdi, Salle Cortot, Wigmore Hall, and Herculessaal, and at the internationally acclaimed Newport Festival, Portland Piano Festival, Ravinia Festival, Gilmore International Keyboard Festival (USA), Chopin Festival (Poland), Gijon International Piano Festival (Spain), and Bologna Festival (Italy). An avid chamber musician as well, Roberto played with some of the most prestigious string quartets in the world such as the Takács, Cremona, St. Petersburg, Fine Arts, Jupiter, and Muir.

First Prize Winner at the 2001 Cleveland International Piano Competition, Prize Winner at the Honens, Dublin, Sendai, Geza Anda, and Valencia Competitions, and Finalist at the 2005 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Roberto’s engaging personality has made him a favorite guest on radio programs such as NPR’s Performance Today, and on TV shows for PBS, France’s Mezzo and Japan’s NHK. Plano was also named the Best Ensemble Performer at the Honens Competition for his performances with cellist Shauna Rolston and soprano Ingrid Attrot, and he was the winner of the Best Recital and Best Performance of a Commissioned Work prizes at the Dublin International Piano Competition.

He has recorded for Decca, Brilliant, Azica, Arktos, Sipario, DaVinci, and Concerto labels, being awarded the maximum 5-star rating by several music magazines. Amadeus, the most widely-read music magazine in Italy, featured Roberto twice on the magazine’s cover, with CDs of music by Alexander Scriabin and forgotten Italian composer Andrea Luchesi. In 2013, he performed the world premiere of Luchesi’s two piano concertos with the Busoni Chamber Orchestra in Trieste, Italy, with Massimo Belli conducting; the performance included a never-before heard cadenza written for the concerto by Mozart. Roberto’s debut award-winning recording for DECCA Classics was released in 2016, featuring the Harmonies Poétiqueset Religieuses by Liszt, which have not been recorded by Decca since the 1960s.

Roberto Plano studied at the Verdi Conservatory in Milan, the Ecole “Cortot” in Paris, and the Lake Como Academy. During his career he has been awarded several prizes, including the Lumen Claro, previously assigned to influential Italian people like soprano Barbara Frittoli, stylist Ottavio Missoni, and economist Mario Monti. He has been described by The Chronicle in Glens Falls, NY, the “Pavarotti of the Piano” for his lyricism, and also defined by Chicago radio commentator Paul Harvey, Jr. as the heir to Rubinstein and Horowitz. The New York Times music critic Anthony Tommasini wrote: “This Italian pianist showed artistic maturity beyond his years… there was a wonderful clarity and control of inner voices in his performances.” A member of the faculty at Boston University since 2016, Roberto joined Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music as Associate Professor of Piano in August 2018. In 2023, Roberto became Professor of Piano at the Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana in Lugano, Switzerland, and International Visiting Professor of Piano at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England.


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Anne-Marie McDermott

Anne-Marie McDermott – United States

Pianist Anne-Marie McDermott is a consummate artist who balances a versatile career as a soloist and collaborator. She performs over 100 concerts a year in a combination of solo recitals, concerti and chamber music. Her repertoire choices are eclectic, spanning from Bach and Haydn to Prokofiev and Scriabin to Kernis, Hartke, Tower and Wuorinen. 
 
With over 50 concerti in her repertoire, Ms. McDermott has performed with many leading orchestra including the New York Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, Dallas Symphony, Columbus Symphony, Seattle Symphony, National Symphony, Houston Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, St. Louis Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Moscow Virtuosi,  Hong Kong Philharmonic, San Diego Symphony, New Jersey Symphony and Baltimore Symphony among others. Ms, McDermott has toured with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Moscow Virtuosi. 
 
In the recent seasons, Ms, McDermott performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic, North Carolina Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Huntsville Symphony, Alabama Symphony, San Diego Symphony, the Oregon Mozart Players, and  the New Century Chamber Orchestra. 
 
Recital engagements have included the 92nd Street Y, Alice Tully Hall, Town Hall,  The Schubert Club, Kennedy Center, as well as universities across the country. Anne-Marie McDermott has curated and performed in a number of intense projects including: the Complete Prokofiev Piano Sonatas and Chamber Music, a Three Concert Series of Shostakovich Chamber Music, as well as a recital series of Haydn and Beethoven Piano Sonatas. Most recently, she commissioned works of Charles Wuorinen and Clarice Assad  which were premiered in May 2009 at Town Hall, in conjunction with Bach’s Goldberg Variations. 
As a soloist, Ms. McDermott has recorded the complete Prokofiev Piano Sonatas, Bach English Suites and Partitas (which was named Gramophone Magazine’s Editor’s Choice), and most recently, Gershwin Complete Works for Piano and Orchestra with the Dallas Symphony and Justin Brown. 
 
In addition to her many achievements, Anne-Marie McDermott has been named the Artistic Director of the famed Vail Valley Music Festival in Colorado, which hosts the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Dallas Symphony  in addition to presenting over 40 chamber music concerts throughout the summer.  She is also Artistic Director of two new Festivals; The Ocean Reef Chamber Music Festival and The Avila Chamber Music Celebration in Curacao. 
 
As a chamber music performer, Anne-Marie McDermott was named an artist member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in 1995 and performs and tours extensively with CMS each season. She continues a long standing collaboration with the highly acclaimed violinist, Nadja Salerno Sonnenberg.  As a duo, they have released a CD titled “Live” on the NSS label and plan to release the Complete Brahms Violin and Piano Sonatas in the future. Ms. McDermott is also a member of the renowned piano quartet, Opus One, with colleagues Ida Kavafian, Steven Tenenbom and Peter Wiley.  
 
She continues to perform each season with her sisters, Maureen McDermott and Kerry McDermott in the McDermott Trio. Ms, McDermott has also released an all Schumann CD with violist, Paul Neubauer, as well as the Complete Chamber Music of Debussy with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. 
 
Ms. McDermott studied at the Manhattan School of Music with Dalmo Carra, Constance Keene and John Browning. She was a winner of the Young Concert Artists auditions and was awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant. 
 
Ms. McDermott regularly performs at Festivals across the United States including, Spoleto, Mainly Mozart, Sante Fe, La Jolla Summerfest, Mostly Mozart, Newport, Caramoor, Bravo, Chamber Music Northwest, Aspen, Music from Angelfire, and the Festival Casals in Puerto Rico, among others.


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Momo Kodama

Momo Kodama – Japan

Praised for her “impeccable technique and facility for crystalline sounds” (American Record Guide), “her natural ease and keen sense for drama” (BBC Music Magazine), “deliciously pearly touch” (Classical-Music) and “crisp, pointed and sensuous playing” (San Francisco Chronicle), Momo Kodama has built up an impressive career with performances with world-renowned orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Bayerisches Staatsorchester, NHK Symphony Orchestra, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, Orchestre de Chambre de Paris and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of Seiji Ozawa, Eliahu Inbal, Charles Dutoit, Kent Nagano, Roger Norrington, Lawrence Foster and André Previn. She has appeared at the Vienna Musikverein, Berlin Philharmonie, Berlin Konzerthaus, Suntory Hall Tokyo, Philharmonie de Paris, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ in Amsterdam and the Wigmore Hall in London. 

She is a regular guests at festivals including Marlboro, Verbier, La Roque d’Anthéron, Festival Chopin, Festival d’Automne, Festival Saint-Denis, Enesco Festival, Tivoli Festival, Settembre Musica, Schleswig-Holstein, Miyazaki and Matsumoto (Seiji Ozawa). 

Momo Kodama enjoys making chamber music with partners including Christian Tetzlaff, Renaud Capuçon, Augustin Dumay, Gautier Capuçon, Steven Isserlis and Jörg Widmann. She also devised and performed a programme for the 100th anniversary of Debussy’s death, with actor Pascal Rénéric and bariton Josep-Ramon Olivé at La Bellevilloise in Paris with further repeats in France and China. 

Her repertoire ranges from the classical and romantic periods to contemporary works. Composers such as Toshio Hosokawa, Jörg Widmann and Christian Mason have written especially for her. Momo Kodama is regarded as a highly distinguished interpreter of Olivier Messiaen’s oeuvre (among which the Turangalîla-Symphonie, the Vingt Regards sur l’enfant-Jésus, the Catalogue d’Oiseaux), and premiered his Fantaisie for Violin and Piano with Isabelle Faust in 2006. 

Her latest recording for ECM, released in spring 2021, features concertos by Mozart and Toshio Hosokawa, with the Mito Chamber Orchestra conducted by Seiji Ozawa. Prior to this, her CD “La vallée des cloches” and “Point and Line – Hosokawa/Debussy Etudes” also released by ECM, received outstanding reviews from The New York Times, BBC Music Magazine (recording of the month), Classica (“Choc”), Neue Zürcher Zeitung, In addition, Momo Kodama has recorded two CD’s for Pentatone together with her pianist sister Mari with works by Tchaikovsky and Martinů, as well as four CD’s for Triton with works by Chopin, Debussy and Messiaen.  On october 1st, Momo Kodama was appointed Professor at the Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe. 

Born in Osaka in Japan, Momo Kodama spent her early years in Europe: educated at a German school, she attended the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique de Paris. She continued her studies under Murray Perahia, András Schiff, Vera Gornostaeva and Tatiana Nikolayeva. In 1991, she became the youngest laureate of the ARD International Music Competition in Munich. 

Momo Kodama is based in Paris and Karlsruhe. In her spare time she enjoys cooking, especially for and with friends and family. 


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Alexander Kobrin

Alexander Kobrin – United States
2005 Cliburn Gold Medalist

“He surrendered neither the smoothness nor the dynamic fluidity that the modern piano allows, and he gave his sense of fantasy free rein, and creating an almost confessional spirit” (The New York Times).

Called the “Van Cliburn of today” by the BBC, pianist Alexander Kobrin has placed himself at the forefront of today’s performing musicians. His prize-winning performances have been praised for their brilliant technique, musicality, and emotional engagement with the audience. The New York Times has written that Mr. Kobrin was a “fastidious guide” to Schumann’s “otherworldly visions, pointing out hunters, flowers, haunted corners and friendly bowers, all captured in richly characterized vignettes.” “This was a performance that will be revered and remembered as a landmark of the regeneration of exceptional classical music in Central New York.” -a critic wrote after Mr. Kobrin’s performance of the Second Piano Concerto by Johannes Brahms with Syracuse Symphony in Syracuse, NY.

In 2005, Mr. Kobrin was awarded the Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Gold Medal at the Twelfth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in Fort Worth, TX. His numerous successes in competitions also include top prizes at the Busoni International Piano Competition (First Prize), Hamamatsu International Piano Competition (Top Prize), Scottish International Piano Competition in Glasgow (First Prize)

Mr. Kobrin has performed with many of the world’s great orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic, Russian National Orchestra, Belgrade Philharmonic, English Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Verdi, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Moscow Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony, Berliner Symphony, Chicago Sinfonietta, Swedish Radio Symphony, Birmingham Symphony, Warsaw Philharmonic, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. He has collaborated with such conductors as Mikhail Pletnev, Mikhail Jurovsky, Mark Elder, Vassiliy Sinaisky, James Conlon, Claus Peter Flor, Alexander Lazarev, Vassiliy Petrenko and Bramwell Tovey.

He has appeared in recital at major halls worldwide, including Carnegie Zankel Hall and Avery Fisher Hall in New York, the Kennedy Centre in Washington, Albert Hall and Wigmore Hall in London, Louvre Auditorium, Salle Gaveau and Salle Cortot in Paris, Munich Herkulesaal and Berliner Filarmonia Hall in Germany, the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire, Sheung Wan Civic Centre in Hong Kong, as well as Sala Verdi in Milan and many others. Other past performances have included recitals at Bass Hall for the Cliburn Series, the Washington Performing Arts Society, La Roque d’Antheron, the Ravinia Festival, the Beethoven Easter Festival, Busoni Festival, the renowned Klavier-Festival Ruhr, the Festival Musique dans le Grésivaudan, the International Keyboard Institute & Festival, annual concert tours in Japan, China, and Taiwan.

Though widely acclaimed as a performer, Mr. Kobrin’s teaching has been an inspiration to many students through his passion for music. From 2003 to 2010 he served on the faculty of the Russian State Gnessin’s Academy of Music. In 2010 Alexander Kobrin was named the L. Rexford Distinguished Chair in Piano at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University, and from 2013 until 2017 has been a member of the celebrated Artist Faculty of New York University’s Steinhardt School. In July 2017, Mr. Kobrin has joined the faculty of the renowned Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. Mr. Kobrin has also given masterclasses in Europe and Asia, the International Piano Series, and at the Conservatories of Japan and China. In 2020, he became co-director of Hiiumaa Homecoming Festival in Estonia.

Mr. Kobrin has been a jury member for many international piano competitions, including the Van Cliburn in Fort Worth, TX, Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolzano, Hamamatsu International Piano Competition, the Blüthner International Piano Competition in Vienna, E-Competition in Fairbanks, AK, and the Neuhaus International Piano Festival in Moscow.

Mr. Kobrin has released recordings on the Harmonia Mundi, Quartz, and Centaur labels, covering a wide swath of the piano literature to critical acclaim. His Schumann album, released on Centaur Records has been included into the top-5 albums of the year in 2015 by Fanfare Magazine. Gramophone Magazine raved about his Cliburn Competition release on Harmonia Mundi, writing that “in [Rachmaninoff’s] Second Sonata (played in the 1931 revision), despite fire-storms of virtuosity, there is always room for everything to tell and Kobrin achieves a hypnotic sense of the music’s dark necromancy.”

Mr. Kobrin was born in 1980 in Moscow. At the age of five, he was enrolled in the world-famous Gnessin Special School of Music after which he attended the prestigious Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatoire. His teachers have included renowned professors Tatiana Zelikman and Lev Naumov.
Mr. Kobrin immigrated to the United States in 2010 and became its citizen in 2015.

Mr. Kobrin is a Shigeru Kawai artist.


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Philippe Bianconi

Philippe Bianconi – France
1985 cliburn silver medalist

French pianist Philippe Bianconi has been described as an artist whose playing is “always close to the soul of the music, filling the space with poetry and life,” (Washington Post) and who offers “an extraordinary exhibition of musicianship, technical control and good taste” (The London Times). Having appeared as a soloist with the world’s finest orchestras, Mr. Bianconi recently concluded his tenure as director of the American Conservatory at Fontainebleau, a post he held between 2013–2017 that cemented his reputation as one of the most distinguished artists of his generation. He continues to teach at the American Conservatory at Fontainebleau and joined the faculty of École Normale de Musique de Paris in fall 2018. 

Mr. Bianconi was awarded the silver medal in the Seventh Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 1985 and made his acclaimed recital debut at Carnegie Hall in 1987.  Since then, he has appeared as a soloist with leading orchestras, including Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Baltimore, Atlanta, Dallas, and Montreal, and performed at the Ravinia Festival with the Chicago Symphony under James Conlon. He has collaborated with such distinguished conductors as Lorin Maazel, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Kurt Masur, JoAnn Falletta, Marek Janowski, and Edo de Waart. 

In Europe, Mr. Bianconi appears regularly with many orchestras, including a recent performance with James Conlon and the Orchestre de l’Opéra de Paris in the sold-out Paris Garnier Opera House, and with the Orchestre National de France, Orchestre de Paris, Berlin Radio Symphony, Netherlands Philharmonic, Warsaw Philharmonic, Prague Symphony Orchestra, Orchester der Beethovenhalle in Bonn, and Strasbourg Philharmonic. He has concertized a number of times in Australia, performing with the Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras. 

An active and acclaimed recitalist, he has performed around the world, including at New York’s Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, at Wigmore Hall in London, for the Berlin Philharmonic, and in San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Hamburg, Milan, Madrid, Tokyo, Shanghai, and Sydney. His recent recital in the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris was a huge success, with Le Figaro acclaiming him “one of the best pianists in France.” In March 2019, as part of the Festival du Printemps des Arts de Monaco, Mr. Bianconi will perform and record Brahms’ first and second piano concertos with the Monte Carlo Philharmonic and conductor Michal Nesterowicz. 

Philippe Bianconi’s recording of Debussy’s Prèludes for the La Dolce Volta label received a prestigious Diapason d’Or de l’année and a nomination for “Recording of the Year” at the Victoires de la Musique Classique. Additionally, he has recorded Debussy piano music and the complete solo works of Ravel, as well as solo albums of Schumann and Schubert, for the Lyrinx label. His other recordings include the Brahms Violin Sonatas with Tedi Papavrami on the Aeon label, works of Shostakovich and Prokofiev with cellist Gary Hoffman on the Le Chant du Monde label, and the three Schubert lieder cycles with Hermann Prey on Denon, a Chopin album with the four Ballades, and a Schumann album featuring Papillons, Carnaval and Davidsbündlertänze. In 2020, Mr. Bianconi released a live album of Brahms’ First and Second Piano Concertos with the Monte Carlo Philharmonic and conductor Michal Nesterowicz, recorded as part of the Festival du Printemps des Arts de Monaco. 

As director of the American Conservatory at the Palais de Fontainebleau from 2013–2017, he joined a celebrated coterie of previous faculty and directors, among them Maurice Ravel, Robert Casadesus, Jean Francaix, Henri Dutilleux, Leonard Bernstein, and Nadia Boulanger, who was director from 1949–1979. Founded in 1921, the American Conservatory has trained an enormous number of legendary musicians, including Aaron Copland, Elliott Carter, Virgil Thomson, Astor Piazzolla, Phillip Glass, and Quincy Jones. Mr. Bianconi makes his home in Paris when he is not performing. 


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Igor Parshin

Igor Parshin

Pianist Igor Parshin graduated with the highest marks from the famous Gnessin State Musical College and Russian Academy of Music. In 2015, he received a scholarship to the TCU School of Music, where he completed his Artist Diploma. He also earned a Master of Music with Dr. Michael Bukhman, a fellow Cliburn in the Classroom artist. 

Igor has successfully participated in international competitions all across the globe. He has performed in solo performances throughout Europe, Asia, and the United States, but his most interesting musical experience was on board the first high polar exploration cruise ship Le Commandant Charcot, bringing concerts all the way to Antarctica! He is one of the first pianists to cross the entire Atlantic Ocean from North to South. Locally, Igor can be seen at the Piano Texas International Festival and Academy, and the Basically Beethoven Festival in Dallas. 

Malcolm Liu

Malcolm Liu

Pianist Guobi Malcolm Liu began studying the piano at the age of 6 and made his professional debut at age 9.  He graduated as the first-place student from the Sichuan Conservatory of Music. Moving to the United States, he completed both Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the School of Music at the University of Kansas. Malcolm is currently a teaching fellow at University of North Texas  where he studies with Artist-in-Residence and 1973 Cliburn Gold Medalist Vladimir Viardo.

Malcolm is a prizewinner of several piano competitions and music scholarships. But piano isn’t the only thing he plays well—he is also a professional gamer! He plays “League of Legends,” and once received a large scholarship to pay for his undergraduate degree by winning a tournament.

Huan Yang

Huan Yang

A native of China, pianist Huan Yang is an avid collaborator and educator—she loves to make music with her friends and students! She earned an undergraduate degree from the Central Conservatory of Music (Beijing) and moved to the United States to complete a master’s degree at Northwestern University in Chicago. Currently, she is an adjunct instructor at Tarrant County College and serves as a staff pianist at Texas Christian University, where she also received her DMA degree in piano performance.

Outside of classical music, Huan performs church music of various styles, including contemporary, pop, and jazz. When not practicing the piano, Huan likes to cultivate her succulent garden.

Elisa Valle

Elisa Valle

Elisa Valle is a vocalist, singer/songwriter, guitarist, and pianist. Originally from Los Angeles, she began her musical journey at age 9 by joining a local choir. She enrolled in private voice lessons at age 16, and only one year later, began composing her own songs.

Elisa joins Cliburn in the Classroom as a bilingual host. She is also an instructor at Artes de la Rosa, where she teaches songwriting and leads the choir for K-12 students. You can see her students perform in Northside events such as the Dia de los Muertos Festival, the Christmas Parade, and various theater events hosted by Artes. Outside of classical music, Elisa’s most influential artists are Taylor Swift, Karol G, and Natalia Lafourcade.

Elisa’s teaching philosophy focuses on nurturing and supporting students in their artistic journey. She is deeply committed to using music as a means of self-expression and aims to inspire others to experience the same.

Gabriela Montero

Gabriela Montero – VENEZUELA/UNITED STATES

In addition to serving on the jury, Gabriela Montero has been commissioned to compose a new work for the 2025 Cliburn Competition, to be performed by all 30 competitors. This marks the third time that the composer of the commissioned work will also serve on the jury.

Gabriela Montero’s visionary interpretations and unique compositional gifts have garnered her critical acclaim and a devoted following on the world stage. Anthony Tommasini remarked in The New York Times that “Montero’s playing had everything: crackling rhythmic brio, subtle shadings, steely power…soulful lyricism…unsentimental expressivity.”

The 2023–2024 season will feature performances of her own “Latin Concerto” on an extensive U.S. tour with Mexico City’s Orquesta Sinfónica de Minería and Carlos Miguel Prieto, as well as with the New World Symphony (Stéphane Denève), Polish National Radio Symphony (Marin Alsop), Antwerp Symphony (Elim Chan), and National Arts Centre Orchestra (Alexander Shelley), the latter with which she continues a flourishing four-year creative partnership through 2025. In May 2024, she also makes her highly anticipated return to Los Angeles to work with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and Jaime Martín.

Ms. Montero’s other recent highlights include a European tour with the City of Birmingham Symphony and Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, as well as debuts with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, and the Minnesota Orchestra, where “Montero’s gripping performance…made a case that she might become the classical scene’s next great composer/pianist” (Star Tribune). Other recent highlights include residencies with the Sao Paolo Symphony, Prague Radio Symphony, Basel Symphony, and at the (partially COVID-disrupted) Rheingau Festival; debuts at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall, New York’s 92nd Street Y, Paris’ Philharmonie and La Seine Musicale, and the London Piano Festival at King’s Place; and the launch of “Gabriela Montero at Prager,” an ongoing artistic residency established at the Prager Family Center for the Arts in Easton, Maryland.

Celebrated for her exceptional musicality and ability to improvise, she has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras to date, including the New York, Royal Liverpool, Rotterdam, Dresden, Oslo, Vienna Radio, Naples, and Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestras; the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, Zürcher Kammerorchester, and Academy of St Martin in the Fields; and the Yomiuri Nippon, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, Toronto, Baltimore, Oregon, Dallas, Vienna, Barcelona, Lucerne, and Sydney Symphony Orchestras; the Belgian National Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin, and Residentie Orkest.

A graduate and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, Ms. Montero is also a frequent recitalist and chamber musician, having given concerts at such distinguished venues as Wigmore Hall, Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Vienna Konzerthaus, Berlin Philharmonie, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Cologne Philharmonie, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Munich Herkulessaal, Sydney Opera House, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Luxembourg Philharmonie, Lisbon Gulbenkian Museum, Manchester Bridgewater Hall, Seoul’s LG Arts Centre, Hong Kong City Hall, and the National Concert Hall in Taipei, and at the Barbican’s “Sound Unbound,” London Piano, Edinburgh, Salzburg, SettembreMusica in Milan and Turin, Enescu, Lucerne, Ravinia, Colorado, Gstaad, Saint-Denis, Violon sur le Sable, Aldeburgh, Cheltenham, Rheingau, Ruhr, Trondheim, Bergen, and Lugano Festivals.

An award-winning and bestselling recording artist, her most recent album, released in autumn 2019 on the Orchid Classics label, features her own “Latin Concerto” and Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major, recorded with the Orchestra of the Americas in Frutillar, Chile. Her previous recording on Orchid Classics features Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and her first orchestral composition, Ex Patria, winning her her first Latin Grammy® for Best Classical Album. Others include Bach and Beyond, which held the top spot on the Billboard Classical Charts for several months and garnered her two Echo Klassik Awards: the 2006 Keyboard Instrumentalist of the Year and 2007 Award for Classical Music without Borders. In 2008, she also received a Grammy® nomination for her album Baroque, and in 2010 she released Solatino, a recording inspired by her Venezuelan homeland and devoted to works by Latin American composers.

Ms. Montero made her formal debut as a composer with Ex Patria, a tone poem designed to illustrate and protest Venezuela’s descent into lawlessness, corruption, and violence. The piece was premiered in 2011 by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Her first full-length composition, Piano Concerto No. 1, the “Latin Concerto,” was first performed in 2016 at the Leipzig Gewandhaus with the MDR Sinfonieorchester and Kristjan Järvi, and subsequently recorded and filmed with the Orchestra of the Americas for the ARTE Konzert channel.

Winner of the 4th International Beethoven Award, Gabriela Montero is a committed advocate for human rights, whose voice regularly reaches beyond the concert hall. She was named an Honorary Consul by Amnesty International in 2015 and recognized with Outstanding Work in the Field of Human Rights by the Human Rights Foundation for her ongoing commitment to human rights advocacy in Venezuela. In January 2020, she was invited to give the Dean’s Lecture at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute and has spoken and performed twice at the World Economic Forum in Davos. She was also awarded the 2012 Rockefeller Award for her contribution to the arts and was a featured performer at Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Inauguration.

Born in Venezuela, she started her piano studies at age 4, making her concerto debut at age 8 in her hometown of Caracas. This led to a scholarship from the government to study privately in the United States and then at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Hamish Milne.

gabrielamontero.com

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Jon Nakamatsu

Jon Nakamatsu – UNITED STATES

Now in his third decade of touring worldwide, American pianist Jon Nakamatsu continues to draw critical and public acclaim for his intensity, elegance, and electrifying solo, concerto, and chamber music performances. Catapulted to international attention in 1997 as the gold medalist of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition—the only American to achieve this distinction since 1981—he subsequently developed a multi-faceted career that encompasses recording, education, arts administration, and public speaking, in addition to his vast concert schedule.

Mr. Nakamatsu has been guest soloist with over 150 orchestras worldwide, including those of Baltimore, Berlin, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Detroit, Florence, Los Angeles, Milan, San Francisco, Seattle, Tokyo, and Vancouver. He has worked with such esteemed conductors as Marin Alsop, Sergiu Comissiona, James Conlon, Philippe Entremont, Hans Graf, Marek Janowski, Raymond Leppard, Gerard Schwarz, Stanisɫaw Skrowaczewski, Michael Tilson Thomas, and Osmo Vänskä.

As a recitalist, Mr. Nakamatsu has appeared in New York City’s Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Musée d’Orsay, and Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, and in major centers such as Boston, Chicago, Houston, London, Milan, Munich, Prague, Singapore, Warsaw, and Zurich. In Beijing he has been heard at the Theater of the Forbidden City, the Great Hall of the People, China Conservatory, and National Centre for the Performing Arts. His numerous summer engagements included appearances at the Aspen, Tanglewood, Ravinia, Caramoor, Vail, WolfTrap, Colorado Brevard, Britt, Colorado College, Evian, Interlochen, Klavierfestival Ruhr, Santa Fe, and Sun Valley Festivals. In 2024, he will participate in an extended residency at Bowdoin Festival in Maine and return to Chautauqua Institution in New York where he has served as artist-in-residence since the summer of 2018.

With clarinetist Jon Manasse, Mr. Nakamatsu tours as a member of the Manasse/Nakamatsu Duo. Following its Boston debut in 2004, the Duo released its first CD for harmonia mundi usa (Brahms Sonatas for Clarinet and Piano) which received the highest praise from The New York Times classical music editor James Oestreich, who named it among the “Best of the Year” for 2008.  A frequent chamber musician, he has collaborated repeatedly with ensembles such as the Emerson, Escher, Jupiter, Miró, Modigliani, Prazak, St. Lawrence, Tokyo, and Ying string quartets, Imani Winds, and Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet, with whom he made multiple tours beginning in 2000.

Mr. Nakamatsu’s 13 CDs recorded for harmonia mundi usa have garnered extraordinary critical praise. An all-Gershwin recording with Jeff Tyzik and Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra featuring Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Concerto in F remained in the top echelons of Billboard’s classical charts for over six months. Other acclaimed discs include the recording premiere of Lukas Foss’ First Piano Concerto with Carl St. Clair and Pacific Symphony, Brahms Piano Quintet with Tokyo String Quartet in the quartet’s final recording as an ensemble, and a solo recording including Robert Schumann’s Second Piano Sonata whose YouTube posting has garnered over 600K hits.

Mr. Nakamatsu has been profiled extensively in print, radio, television, and online. He has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, in Reader’s Digest magazine and recently on Live from Here! with Chris Thile. In 1999, he performed at the White House at the special invitation of President and Mrs. Clinton. He has also performed for the United States Mayor’s Convention in San Francisco and, in 2001, was the featured guest artist during the opening and dedication of the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II in Washington, D.C.

A former high school teacher of German with no formal conservatory training, Mr. Nakamatsu studied privately with Marina Derryberry for over 20 years beginning at the age of 6; worked with Karl Ulrich Schnabel since the age of 9; and trained for 10 years in composition, theory, and orchestration with Dr. Leonard Stein of the University of Southern California’s Schoenberg Institute. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Stanford University in German Studies and secondary education. In 2015, he joined the piano faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and, in 2023, the Department of Music at Stanford University. He lives in the Bay Area with his wife Kathy and young son Gavin.

jonnakamatsu.com

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Lise de la Salle

Lise de la Salle – FRANCE

With more than 15 years of award-winning Naïve recordings and international concert appearances, Lise de la Salle has established herself as a musician of real sensibility and maturity. Her playing inspired a Washington Post critic to write, “For much of the concert, the audience had to remember to breathe… the exhilaration didn’t let up for a second until her hands came off the keyboard.”

Ms. de la Salle has played with many of the world’s leading orchestras and conductors. She made her London Symphony Orchestra debut with Fabio Luisi, which initiated a long-term association: he invited her to be the first artist-in-residence at the Zurich Opera (2014), featured her regularly with the Vienna Symphony—including a performance in New York in the Great Performers Series at Lincoln Center—and collaborated with her to record the complete works of Rachmaninov for piano and orchestra. She has also appeared with the most prominent orchestras in the United States (Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia), across Europe (BBC, London, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Munich, Paris, Rotterdam), and Asia (NHK, Singapore, Tokyo Metropolitan), working with conductors such as Herbert Blomstedt, Fabio Luisi, James Conlon, Gianandrea Noseda, Krzysztof Urbanski, Antonio Pappano, Rafael Payare, Karina Kanellakis, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Osmö Vanska, Fabien Gabel, James Gaffigan, and Semyon Bychkov.

Recital tours have taken her to esteemed halls—including the Vienna Musikverein, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Herkulessaal in Munich, Berlin Philharmonie, Tonhalle Zurich, Lucerne KKL, Bozar in Brussels, Wigmore and Royal Festival Halls, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, and the Hollywood Bowl—and most prestigious festivals. She also takes pleasure in educational outreach and conducts masterclasses in many of the cities in which she performs.

She has released 10 critically acclaimed recordings with Naïve, including an all-Chopin disc with a live recording of the Second Piano Concerto with Fabio Luisi and the Staatskapelle Dresden; a Liszt album for his Bicentennial, which received the Diapason d’Or and was named Gramophone’s Editor’s Choice; and Bach Unlimited, a Bach-focused album also featuring Liszt’s Fantasy and Fugue on a theme of B.A.C.H and the Bach/Busoni Chaconne. Her latest solo album (2021), When do we Dance?, presents an odyssey of dances through a whole century.

Ms. de la Salle started the piano at age 4 and gave her first concert five years later in a live broadcast on Radio France. She entered the Paris Conservatoire at age 11, and at 13, made her concerto debut in Avignon, followed by her Paris recital debut at the Louvre, and went on tour with the Orchestre National d’Ile de France. She has worked closely with Pierre Réach, Bruno Rigutto, and Pascal Nemirovski, and was long-term advisee of Genevieve Joy-Dutilleux.

In 2004, she won the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in New York. Later that year, the organization presented both her New York and Washington, D.C. debuts. At the Ettlingen International Competition in Germany, she won First Prize and the Bärenreiter Award. She has also won First Prize in many French piano competitions.

lisedelasalle.com

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Mari Kodama

Mari Kodama – JAPAN/UNITED STATES

Mari Kodama is consistently praised for her virtuosity in a wide range of repertoire, including orchestral, chamber, and solo works by composers of all periods. She is also known for her natural musicality, tonal expressiveness with a clear form, and as a benchmark Beethoven interpreter.

In the 2023–2024 season, Ms. Kodama showcases her diverse talents with various international concert appearances, such as an open-air concert with Philharmonischen Staatsorchesters Hamburg (Kent Nagano); three season opening concerts with National Symphony Orchestra, Taiwan (Lan Shui); debut concerts with Orchestra Haydn of Bolzano and Trento; and a return to Japan Philharmonic (Kahchung Wong). She will give a solo recital for Festival Louvre Lance, as well as duo recitals with Momo Kodama in Japan and at Salle Bourgie in Montreal. She will also give her first recital at Konzerthaus Blaibach, which marks the start of her series with all 32 of Beethoven’s piano sonatas and new works written by Rodolphe Bruneau-Boulmier.

As a further demonstration of her versatility, she plays a central part in the hugely successful ballet production “Beethoven Projekt II” (John Neumeier) which re-opened the Staatsoper Hamburg after months of Covid-19 closures and which was revived in 2022–2023 with eight performances. In recital, she collaborated with Markus Hinterhäuser featuring Messiaen’s Visions de l’Amen. She also organized the Beethoven Festival “A Life in a Day” in San Francisco and presented all 32 of Beethoven’s piano sonatas over two days by 14 different soloists.

Beethoven’s piano works form a focal point of Ms. Kodama’s recording activities with Pentatone and Berlin Classics. She is one of few female pianists to record the composer’s complete sonatas, with her 2014 box set from Pentatone receiving critical acclaim. In fall 2019, she released Beethoven’s Piano Concerto Nos. 0–5 with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and Kent Nagano, which together with his Rondo for Piano and Orchestra Triple Concerto, and his Eroica Variations for solo piano complement the Beethoven CD (Berlin Classics). Kodama’s next release will be Mozart’s Concerto for Three Pianos and Poulenc’s Concerto for Two Pianos with Orchestre de la Suisse Romande.

Through her performing activities, Ms. Kodama has brought infrequently heard gems of the piano repertoire to global audiences. She has performed Stenhammer’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in Gothenburg and New York, and has also collaborated with Viviane Hagner on Alban Berg’s Chamber Concerto for Piano and Violin, which they performed with both the Jyväskylä Sinfonia and the DSO Berlin. Additionally, in 2013, she premiered Jean-Pascal Beinthus’ Double Piano Concerto together with Momo Kodama and Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo. She also performed in the Canadian premieres of Jörg Widmann’s Valse Bavaroise and Humoresken, both at the Canadian Orford Festival in summer 2010.

In addition to her performances, she also plays an active role as a music festival artistic director. She co-founded the Forest Hill Musical Days Festival, a chamber music festival in San Francisco, with her husband Kent Nagano, and she has also led the chamber music series at the Orford Music Festival. In 2018, she assumed artistic directorship at the Festival Tra Luce e Sogno in Postignano, Italy, for which she secured artists such as Christian Gerhaher, Matt Haimovitz, and Gerold Huber, among others. Ms. Kodama is a Steinway Artist.

marikodama.com

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Andreas Haefliger

Andreas Haefliger – SWITZERLAND

Andreas Haefliger comes from a rich tradition of music making and is acclaimed for his sensitivity, musical insights, and transcendent pianism. Known for innovative programming, he brings an all-encompassing passion and humanity to his concert appearances and recordings. At an early age, he was surrounded by intense vocal artistry, thereby acquiring the beginnings of what would become a highly individual vocal piano sound and a sense of natural lyricism in his music making. Soon after completing his studies at The Juilliard School, he began performing with the major American and European orchestras.

A superb recitalist, Mr. Haefliger has appeared many times at prestigious venues such as the Vienna Konzerthaus and Wigmore Hall, and at the Lucerne and Edinburgh Festivals. A uniquely insightful interpreter of Beethoven, he has made it his life’s work to perform all the sonatas live and on recording, alongside works by other composers in his illuminating Perspectives series, first on Avie (with whom he also recorded flute sonatas with his wife Marina Piccinini) and latterly on BIS.

Mr. Haefliger began his recording career with Sony Classical, later appearing on Decca with the Takács Quartet and also Matthias Goerne, with whom he won the Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik for Schubert’s Goethe Songs. His latest releases on BIS include Beethoven op. 31 sonatas, and concertos by Ravel, Bartók, and Dieter Ammann (written specially for him) with the Helsinki Philharmonic and Susanna Malkki.

In 2024, he and his wife will present the first edition of the Zauberklang Festival, inviting special guests such as Hilary Hahn and Ian Bostridge to perform in intimate surroundings high in the Swiss Alps.

andreashaefliger.com

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Paul Lewis, Jury Chair

Paul Lewis – IRELAND/UNITED KINGDOM
Jury Chair

Paul Lewis is one of the foremost interpreters of the Central European piano repertoire, his performances and recordings of Beethoven and Schubert receiving universal critical acclaim. He was awarded CBE in 2016 for his services to music, and the sincerity and depth of his musical approach have won him fans around the world.

This global popularity is reflected in the world-class orchestras with whom he works, including the Berlin Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, London Symphony, Philharmonia, Bavarian Radio Symphony, NHK Symphony, New York Philharmonic, LA Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw, and Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestras. His close relationship with Boston Symphony Orchestra led to his selection as the 2020 Koussevitzky Artist at Tanglewood.

With a natural affinity for Beethoven, he took part in the BBC’s three-part documentary Being Beethoven and performed a concerto cycle at Tanglewood during summer 2022. He has performed the cycle all over the world, including with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Camerata Salzburg, Melbourne Symphony, Orquestra Simfonica Camera Musicae, São Paulo State Symphony, and Royal Flemish Philharmonic Orchestras, and was the first pianist to play the complete cycle in a single season at the BBC Proms in 2010. Between 2022 and 2024, Mr. Lewis embarks on a four-program Schubert piano sonata series presented at over 25 venues and festivals around the world.

Besides many award-winning Beethoven and Schubert recordings for harmonia mundi, his discography also demonstrates his characteristic depth of approach in other Classical and Romantic repertoire such as Haydn, Schumann, Mussorgsky, Brahms, and Liszt. In chamber music, he is a regular at Wigmore Hall, having played there more than 100 times. He works closely with tenor Mark Padmore in lied recitals around the world; they have recorded three Schubert song cycles together.

Mr. Lewis is co-artistic director of Midsummer Music, an annual chamber music festival held in Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom. He is a passionate advocate for music education, and the festival offers free tickets to local schoolchildren. He also gives masterclasses around the world alongside his concert performances. He himself studied with Joan Havill at Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London before going on to study privately with Alfred Brendel. In 2021, he became an Irish citizen.

Over the course of his career, awards have included Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist of the Year; two Edison awards; three Gramophone awards; Diapason d’Or de l’Annee; South Bank Show Classical Music Award; honorary degrees from Liverpool, Edge Hill, and Southampton Universities; and appointment as Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2016 Queen’s Birthday Honours. Major concerts appearances have included Royal Festival Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Musikverein, Konzerthaus, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Concertgebouw, Berlin Philharmonie, and Berlin Konzerthaus, as well as Tanglewood, Ravinia, Schubertiade, Edinburgh, Salzburg, and Lucerne Festivals.

paullewispiano.co.uk

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Rico Gulda

Rico Gulda – AUSTRIA

Born in Zurich as the youngest son to a family of musicians, Rico Gulda grew up in Munich, where he studied the piano first with his mother Yuko, then continued with legendary German virtuoso Ludwig Hoffmann. At the Vienna Music University, he then studied with Noel Flores, whilst also working with his father, the late pianist-composer Friedrich Gulda.

Initially embarking on a career as pianist, he performed with international orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic, National Orchestra of Belgium, Czech Philharmonic of Brno, Verdi Orchestra Milan, Mozarteum Orchestra of Salzburg, Radio Orchestra Svizzera Lugano, and New Japan Philharmonic, and released recordings on the Naxos, Deutsche Grammophon, Orplid, and Amphion labels. Highlights have included televised performances of Mozart´s Triple Concerto with Martha Argerich (also released on CD/DVD), as well as performances with Renaud Capuçon, Matthias Goerne, Michael Schade, and the late Paul Badura-Skoda. His arrangement of Rossini´s Semiramide Overture for Eight Pianos was performed and recorded at the Verbier Festival, featuring pianists Evgeny Kissin, Lang Lang, Leif Oves Andsnes, and Emanuel Ax, amongst others.

Mr. Gulda taught piano at Mozarteum University (Salzburg), Hansei University (Seoul), and in masterclasses in Vienna, Vietnam, and Japan. He now regularly holds music management workshops and is frequently invited as juror at major international piano competitions. He served on the jury of the 2022 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.

In 2000, Rico Gulda began developing a career in music management: first in artist management and then as manager of Kristjan Järvi´s Absolute Ensemble in New York. In 2007, he joined the Wiener Konzerthaus as executive assistant to the CEO. In 2013, he was promoted to head of artistic planning and dramaturgy of Wiener Konzerthaus, responsible for over 600 concerts per season. He is also artistic director of the Oberösterreichische Stiftskonzerte summer festival.

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Wu Han

Wu Han – CHINA TAIWAN/UNITED STATES

Pianist Wu Han, recipient of Musical America’s Musician of the Year Award, the highest honor bestowed by the organization, enjoys a multi-faceted musical life that encompasses performing, recording, and artistic direction at the highest levels.

Her recent concert activities have taken her from New York’s Lincoln Center stages to the most important concert halls in the United States, Europe, and Asia. In addition to countless performances of virtually the entire chamber repertoire, her recent concerto performances include appearances with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony, and Aspen Festival Orchestra.

She is the founder and artistic director of ArtistLed, classical music’s first artist-directed, internet-based recording label (1997), which has released her performances of the staples of the cello-piano duo repertoire with cellist David Finckel. Her more than 80 releases on the ArtistLed, CMS Live, and Music@Menlo LIVE labels include masterworks of the chamber repertoire with numerous distinguished musicians, the latest being Schubert’s Winterreise with baritone Nikolay Borchev. During the pandemic seasons, Wu Han designed and produced more than 270 digital media projects, including concerts and innovative educational programs, which sustained the art of chamber music in dozens of communities across the United States.

Currently artistic co-director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and Music@Menlo, Silicon Valley’s innovative chamber music festival, she also serves as artistic advisor for Wolf Trap’s Chamber Music at the Barns series and for Palm Beach’s Society of the Four Arts, and in 2022 was named artistic director of La Musica in Sarasota, Florida.

Passionately dedicated to education for musicians of all ages and experience, Wu Han guides the CMS Bowers Program, which admits stellar young musicians to the CMS roster for a term of three seasons. She also oversees the Chamber Music Institute at Music@Menlo, which immerses some 40 young musicians every summer in the multi-faceted fabric of the festival. She was privileged to serve on multiple occasions as a faculty member of Isaac Stern’s Chamber Music Encounters in Israel, New York, and Japan.

A recipient of the prestigious Andrew Wolf Award, Wu Han was mentored by an elite selection of some of the greatest pianists of our time, including Lilian Kallir, Rudolf Serkin, and Menahem Pressler. Married to cellist David Finckel since 1985, she divides her time between concert touring and residences in New York City and Westchester County.

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Yevgeny Sudbin

Yevgeny Sudbin – UNITED KINGDOM

Yevgeny Sudbin has been hailed by The Telegraph as “potentially one of the greatest pianists of the 21st century.” As BIS Records’ only exclusive artist, all of his recordings have met with critical acclaim and are regularly featured as CD of the Month by BBC Music Magazine or Editor’s Choice by Gramophone. His Scriabin recording was awarded CD of the Year by The Telegraph and received the MIDEM Classical Award for Best Solo Instrument Recording at Cannes. It was described by Gramophone as “a disc in a million,” while the International Record Review stated that his Rachmaninov recording “confirms him as one of the most important pianistic talents of our time.” His 10th anniversary disc of Scarlatti sonatas was received with equal rapture and not only hit No. 1 in the Classical Music Charts but was also nominated for the Gramophone Classical Music Award. He was also nominated as Gramophone Artist of the Year in 2016.

Mr. Sudbin performs regularly in many of the world’s finest venues and concert series, both in recital and with orchestra, including Tonhalle Zurich; Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, and Wigmore Hall in London; Concertgebouw (Meesterpianisten, Amsterdam); and Avery Fisher Hall (New York) and Davies Symphony Hall (San Francisco). Recent engagements and tours have included orchestras such as New Zealand Symphony, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester, Lucerne Symphony, Czech Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. His performance of Rachmaninov’s Concerto No. 1 at the BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall was described by The Telegraph as “sublime.”

He has collaborated with some of the world’s most influential conductors, such as Neeme Järvi, Charles Dutoit, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Osmo Vänskä, Hannu Lintu, Tugan Sokhiev, Mark Wigglesworth, Andrew Litton, Dmitri Slobodeniouk, and Vassily Sinaisky. His love of chamber music has led him to collaborate with many other musicians including Alexander Chaushian, Ilya Gringolts, Hilary Hahn, Julia Fischer, the Chilingirian Quartet, and many others. Appearances at festivals include Aspen, Mostly Mozart, Tivoli, Nohant, La Roque d’Antheron, Menton, and Verbier.

Mr. Sudbin lives in London with his wife and three young children. In his spare time, he is an avid photographer.

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Michael Bukhman

Michael Bukhman

Passionate about collaboration, Michael Bukhman is active internationally as a chamber musician, adjudicator, and pedagogue. An award-winning pianist, he has been a top-prize winner and medalist in several international piano competitions.

Currently assistant professor of collaborative piano and chamber music at Texas Christian University (TCU) in Fort Worth, Michael participated in the inaugural concerts of the Van Cliburn Concert Hall at TCU. Working with musicians from the Dallas and Fort Worth Symphony Orchestras, he has also been featured in the Metamorphosis Dallas ensemble, the Spectrum Chamber Music Series, and the Chamber Music Society of Fort Worth. He also established a local chapter of Music for Food, an international community outreach program, generating thousands of dollars to benefit the Tarrant Area Food Bank.

Prior to his appointment to TCU, Michael served as guest artist-in-residence at the Oberlin Conservatory, and on the staff and pre-college faculty of the New England Conservatory. He also taught at Bard and Vassar Colleges. While at Bard, he founded Play/Chat@Bard, a concert series showcasing young musicians in performance with informal conversation.

Michael attended the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where he became the first in that institution’s history to graduate with Honors in Piano Performance. He holds MM and DMA degrees from The Juilliard School.

Danny Jordan

Danny Jordan

Danny Jordan recently returned to the Dallas area after completing their Master of Music Degree in Viola Performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Prior to that, Danny graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in music from Southern Methodist University.  Lauded by critics as “outstanding, with a sound that enraptures,” they have been a prizewinner and finalist at several solo and chamber music competitions, and performed as soloist and in ensembles across the United States.

Outside of performance, Danny is an avid educator, working with violists and violinists of all ages in individual and group settings for more than a decade. Their students have earned entry into a variety of ensembles and programs, including Houston Youth Symphony, Cleveland School of the Arts, the Cleveland Youth Orchestra, and various All-Region ensembles across the state of Texas. Beyond the classroom, Danny was recently appointed to the American Viola Society’s Youth Advisory Council, in which they advocate for the wants and needs of young violists across the United States. Outside of music, Danny spends time tutoring in Spanish, math, and science, and enjoys cooking and hiking with friends.

Danny is thrilled to join Cliburn in the Classroom as a bilingual host!

Hando Nahkur

Hando Nahkur

Described as “consistently amazing in his ability to blend both the technical and interpretive demands of his repertoire,” (WholeNote) internationally acclaimed pianist Hando Nahkur has captivated audiences around the globe in performances as a recitalist, soloist, and collaborative artist. He has appeared with orchestras in the United States, Canada, Costa Rica, Estonia, Sweden, and Germany. In recital, he has performed at major concert venues such as the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the National Theatre in Costa Rica, and the Casa de la Cultura de Reynosa in Mexico. Local audiences have enjoyed his performances at the Meyerson Symphony Center and Steinway Hall in Fort Worth.

Hando was the National Winner of the Eurovision International Competition for Musicians in Austria, and a special prize winner in the Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition. As a recording artist, Hando has seven solo albums to his credit. His recording DeusExClavier reached the top of the music charts in Europe and was named “Record of the Year” by ZEIT-ONLINE in Germany.

Passionate about inspiring students to express themselves musically at the highest level possible, Hando has 20 years of teaching experience. He has served on the faculties of the University of Dallas, Lexington Music School, and Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts.

A native of Estonia, Hando received his early training at the Tallinn Music High School and the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre. He relocated to the United States for additional studies and earned degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music, Yale University, and University of North Texas.

Cecilia Lo-Chien Kao

Cecilia Lo-Chien Kao

Taiwanese pianist Cecilia Lo-Chien Kao is a dynamic performer that is in demand as a chamber musician. She has collaborated with several internationally known artists such as Lynn Harrell and Robert McDuffie, and members of the Tokyo, Emerson, and Juilliard String Quartets, among many others. She has performed at Carnegie Weill Hall and can be heard with cellist Bion Tsang on his album The Blue Rock Sessions.

Cecilia is an assistant professor at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth and travels across the country as a faculty member of prestigious chamber music festivals. She holds a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Colorado Boulder and a Master of Music from the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to her move to the United States, she was one of the first pianists to receive the Master of Arts degree in Collaborative Piano from National Taiwan Normal University in Taipei, where she also received her bachelor’s degree.

Cecelia is excited to join the team at Cliburn in the Classroom and looks forward to sharing fun music with area elementary students!

Ivaylo Vassilev

Ivaylo Vassilev Ивайло Василев

Bulgaria  I  15

Ivaylo Vassilev has attended the National Music School “L. Pipkov” in his hometown of Sofia, Bulgaria, for nine years—currently studying with Borislava Taneva. He has more than 20 international competition wins to his name, in Bulgaria, France, Russia, Finland, Germany, Singapore, Belgium, Spain, North Macedonia, and the United States. In his country, he has received many national honors, including the 2021 “Crystal Lyre” (the highest art award in Bulgaria by the Union of Bulgarian Musicians and Dancers) and the Special Award from the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture for High Artistic Achievements in 2018 and 2019. Ivaylo also plays viola and composes, and attends classical music concerts at least once a week. Outside of music, he enjoys mathematics, chemistry, geography, reading, foreign languages, and stamp collecting.

 


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Xinran Shi

Xinran Shi

United States I  13

An 8th grader at Miller Middle School in San Jose, California, Xinran Shi has won competitions across the United States. She currently learns piano with Hans Boepple and has appeared on NPR’s From the Top. She was a Young Scholar of the Lang Lang International Music Foundation 2020–2022 class and performed last year at the organization’s galas in New York and California, as well as at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall. Outside of the piano, she enjoys dancing ballet, reading, swimming and traveling.

 


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Can Sarac

Can Sarac

Turkey  I  15

Can Sarac began piano lessons at the age of 5 and won Istanbul University State Conservatory exams that same year, where he went on to study with Fulya Tezer and Melina Kuyumcu. In June 2021, he has been in Michael Schäfer’s studio at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Munich Pre-College program, and he is a scholarship holder of the Liechtenstein International Music Academy. He has won prizes in solo, duo, and accompaniment competitions around the globe and has performed in renowned venues such as Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall, Liederhalle Stuttgart, The State Hermitage Museum St.Petersburg, and “GES-2” (Moscow). Can is a tutoring member of Care-to-Share, a charity initiative to support underprivileged children in their music education. A student at Ugur High School, he enjoys reading and watching sci-fi and fantasy, and is a huge fan of the Fenerbahçe SK sports club.

 


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Akilan Sankaran

Akilan Sankaran

United States  I  16

A sophomore at the Albuquerque Academy, Akilan Sankaran is a major award winner across several disciplines. In piano, he’s studied with Lawrence Blind at the New Mexico School of Music for nine years and regularly takes home first prize at state competitions; he has also performed at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall, the Verbier Festival (which he attended last year on a full scholarship as the only junior pianist), and Toronto’s Royal Conservatory of Music. Akilan is equally as committed to mathematics: he has conducted two in-depth research projects on undergraduate-level topics in number theory, which won him national and international competitions and a feature on NPR. He has competed on the state level in MathCounts (first prize) and cross country (top 20 runner); is a team member in Science Olympiad, Science Bowl, and Speech and Debate Competitions; and writes for his school newspaper.

 


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Samuel Sabbah

Samuel Sabbah

Norway  I  14

Music runs in the family for Samuel Sabbah: his father, Daniel Sabbah, has been his piano teacher since age 5, and his siblings are international prizewinners in voice, violin, and cello. When he was 6, he and his father performed at 40 retirement homes in one year, and he did his first of many media interviews. He is the youngest pianist ever to win prizes in all three national competitions in Norway; he’s followed that with nine first-place finishes at international contests in Belgium, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and the United States. And in 2021, at the age of 13, he was named “Norway’s Best Musician” at the Midgard National Music Competition, for ages 8–21. Outside of music, he enjoys football, ping pong, swimming, card tricks, Legos, puzzles, and Rubik’s Cube.


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Melanie Yutong Liu

Melanie Yutong Liu

China  I  14

A resident of Mill Creek, Washington, Melanie Yutong Liu made her recital debut in Seattle in 2018, and her orchestral debut last year with the Bellevue Symphony. She is a prizewinner of 20 national and international competitions, in Italy, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and has studied piano with Allan Park for 4 years. Melanie is a freshman at Henry M. Jackson High School, where she enjoys math and science. She also plays violin and loves reading philosophy, realism in art, and cycling.

 


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Casey Li

CASEY LI

Singapore  I  14

Casey Li performed as soloist with the Emmanuel Symphony Orchestra in Singapore in July 2017 when she was 8 years old. Since then, she has won prizes at many competitions in her country, as well as in Korea, Japan, and the United States, and has studied piano with Benjamin Loh for five years. She is a student at the Raffles Girls’ School, where she is in the Guitar Ensemble. Outside of piano and school, she has a number of hobbies and interests: Chinese Dance (which she’s studied diligently since she was 5), figure skating, reading, bullet journaling, and hand lettering.


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Olivia Larco

OLIVIA LARCO

United States  I  13

Olivia Larco has music in her blood: her mother is a pianist, and her father plays viola in the Los Angeles Philharmonic. In March 2020, she made her recital and radio debuts at the same time, appearing on NPR’s From the Top in concert at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills; later that year, she began lessons with 1993 Cliburn Finalist Fabio Bidini at The Colburn School. She is a current Lang Lang Scholar who received a full merit scholarship to the 2022 Aspen Summer Music Festival. The Pasadena resident attends the Westridge School for Girls and made her national TV debut in May 2019, playing a piano prodigy on the series finale of ABC’s “Modern Family.” She has also written three novels.

 

 


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Hanna Kozyak

HANNA KOZYAK Ганна Козяк

Ukraine  I  16

Hanna Kozyak began piano lessons when she was 6 and currently studies with Oksana Rapita at the Lviv Krushelnytska State Music Lyceum in her hometown. Since 2015, she has won 14 prizes at national and international competitions. She has given solo performances in Germany, Sweden, Ukraine, and Poland, and made her orchestral debut in 2019 with the Lviv National Philharmonic. Last year, she was awarded a presidential scholarship “For the most gifted young artists of Ukraine.” Away from the piano, she enjoys Alpine skiing, scouting, and literature.

 


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Anna Kesselman

ANNA KESSELMAN

United States  I  15

Anna Kesselman has studied with Natela Mchedlishvili since she was 5 years old. A New York native, she attends the Special Music School High School at Kaufman Music Center, has performed at both Carnegie Weill Recital Hall and Merkin Hall, and has placed in three U.S.-based competitions. Anna was a co-author of the book Who is Florence Price?, published by G. Schirmer, and presented and performed Price’s music with her fellow co-authors in several New York City libraries and halls, as well as Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia.She also serves on the Ambassadors Club at her school, which helps support and promote the Center’s programs through volunteering. Other hobbies include reading and painting.

 


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Kayden Kelly

KAYDEN KELLY

United States / Costa Rica  I  16

Kayden Kelly studies piano with 1993 Cliburn Finalist Fabio Bidini at the Music Academy of The Colburn School; gave his recital debut at the National Theater of Costa Rica in 2018 and his orchestra debut in Italy three years later; and has given more than 20 public performances in the last seven years. The Santa Fe native currently attends the Albuquerque Academy, where is he is on the swim team and in the engineering club. And, when he was 11 years old, received an award for his musical talent and dedication from the Secretary for the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs. Kayden recently appeared on NPR’s From the Top.

 


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William Ge

WILLIAM GE

United States  I  16

A student at the Phillips Academy Andover and the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, William Ge recently debuted with the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Kimmel Center, an appearance that led the Philadelphia Inquirer to rave: “The future was easy to imagine in the hands of William Ge.” A Silver Medalist and Chopin Award winner of the 2023 United States National MTNA Senior Performance Competition and a recipient of the Chopin Foundation’s Chopin Scholarship, he’s a prize-winner of over 20 competitions and currently studies with John Perry and Ya-Fei Chuang. A 2025 Caroline D. Bradley Scholar, William loves physics and is heavily involved in school activities: acting as an Eco-Leader in Andover’s Sustainability Coalition, running distance on the track team, performing with the Chamber Music Society, and writing for The Phillipian, Andover’s weekly publication.

 


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Asta Dora Finnsdottir

ASTA DORA FINNSDOTTIR

Iceland  I  16

Asta Dora Finnsdottir has won 19 competitions in 15 countries: Israel, Ukraine, Iceland, United Kingdom, Greece, France, Hungary, Sweden, Serbia, Czechia, Bulgaria, Russia, Canada, United Arab Emirates, and Singapore. She made both her recital and concerto debuts in Iceland in 2021; currently studies with both Peter Máté at the Reykjavik College of Music (Iceland) and Marina Pliassova at the Barratt Due Institute of Music (Norway); and became an online sensation when at the age of 9 she wowed commuters—and then 2 million YouTube viewers—when she performed Mozart on a public piano while on vacation in London.

 


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Grace Feng

GRACE FENG

United States  I  16

Grace Feng started ballet dancing when she was 3, piano when she was 4, opera singing when she was 6, and viola when she was 8. Now a sophomore at Folsom High School in California, she continues to pursue each of these passions today. She made her recital debut at Carnegie Hall in 2016 and performed at the famed venue again two years later, has won 17 competitions in the United States, and currently studies with Ilana Vered and Carol Chuang. And she is vice president of the Pacific Institute of Music Student Honors Society, which holds benefit concerts to raise funds for local non-profits.

 


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Yiran Zhou

YIRAN ZHOU 周怡然

China  I  15

“Classical music is an indispensable part of the world. For me, playing classical music is a wonderful thing. It means inheritance to our generation. We should learn from the handling of old artists and combine our own thoughts.”

Yiran Zhou made her recital debut in her hometown of Shanghai in 2013; she was 5 years old. Just four years later, she won her first competition, the Frankfurt International Junior Piano Competition; she followed that with first-place finishes at the Rachmaninov and Melbourne Competitions, and third prize at the ClavierCologne NRW. For the past two years, she has studied with Xiao Luo at the Middle School Affiliated to Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Yiran calls her participation in the Cliburn Junior “a dream I wanted to realize since I learned the piano” and has found great inspiration in the festivals and masterclasses she’s attended: “every master’s different understanding of the same piece makes me feel the charm of music.” Outside of the piano, she enjoys watching movies and opera, and reading detective novels.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in C-sharp Major, BWV 848
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 10 in F Minor
KREISLER–RACHMANINOV Liebeslied
KREISLER–RACHMANINOV Liebesfreud

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 4 in E-flat Major, op. 7 (I)
LIEBERMANN Nocturne No. 4, op. 38
STRAVINSKY Trois mouvements de Pétrouchka

Semifinal Round – Recital

ZHAO XIAOXIANG When a Dancer Emerges from Clouds
RACHMANINOV Études-tableaux, op. 39

Final Round – Concerto 

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

 


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Chengcheng Yao

CHENGCHENG YAO 姚承承

China  I  14

“Reading books gives me a lot of information and drive for the development of my artistry. Reading books often brings me a lot of inspiration and arouses various sentiments from the bottom of my heart. It is really a big harvest. I expect I will convey my inner world to the audience through my performances.”

When Chengcheng Yao was 4 years old, he saw someone playing the piano in the lobby of a hotel; he was transfixed, and a seed took root. He began lessons soon thereafter, where his rare tenacity and persistence led him to practice for five hours a day when he was in the first grade. His mother began taking him on the train to Shanghai from their home in Fuzhou once or twice a week—around seven hours round trip—for lessons. In 2019, he was admitted to the Music Middle School Affiliated to Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where he studies with Xie Jia; his previous teachers were Yang Yifu and Zhou Ting. He made both his recital and concerto debuts in Shanghai as well, in 2021 and 2020, respectively. With five early competition victories to his name, he notes that the Cliburn Junior will be his first in-person contest in three years, due to the pandemic. “I hope the world will link together again by such a big music event.” He believes deeply in the life-long benefits of learning classical music: it “helps a person to develop intelligence;” “helps strengthen the mathematical thinking;” “improves a person’s mental capacity and temperament;” and “cultivates the learners’ aesthetic judgment.” Outside of the piano, he enjoys reading books.

 


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in F-sharp Major, BWV 858
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in A Minor, op. 39, no. 6
CHOPIN Waltz in A-flat Major, op. 42
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 1 in F Minor, op. 1

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 2 in A Major, op. 2, no. 2
CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1

Semifinal Round – Recital

ZHAO XIAOXIANG When a Dancer Emerges from Clouds
RAVEL Jeux d’eau
SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13

Final Round – Concerto 

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

 


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Yifan Wu

YIFAN WU 吴一凡
Shirley Cox McIntyre Second Prize Winner 

China  I  14

“With its unique magic power and fascination, classical music is a treasure for our generation, and it waits for us to explore its beauty. It provides us with opportunities to reflect on ourselves and the world. It involves human history, emotions, artistry, which are shared by people around the world. Though we don’t speak the same language, we are touched by the same piece of music. It helps unite people of my generation together and encourages us to strive for peace and love.”

When he was very young, Yifan Wu’s grandmother would play the piano for him, and his mother shared this same passion for music. He started lessons when he was 4 and began to fall in love with the piano. At age 9, he was admitted to the Music Middle School Affiliated to Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where he has been awarded scholarships each academic year. He says his teacher, Ting Zhou, taught him “to learn music enthusiastically. Now music brings me happiness and gives me greater motivation to learn it further.” He made his recital debut at Steinway Hall in his native Shanghai and his concerto debut with the Wuhan Philharmonic Orchestra, both in 2019.  A laureate of several national Chinese competitions, including four first-place finishes, he has not competed since 2018, making the Cliburn Junior his first in five years. He comes to Dallas seeing it as “a good opportunity to improve my piano skills, have a further understanding of music, and most importantly, tap my artistic potential.” Yifan is involved in his school’s badminton club—with weekly matches and/or lectures about the sport—and community cycling team. He also enjoys reading and camping.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in E Major, BWV 878
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 5 “Feux follets”
SCRIABIN Sonata No. 4 in F-sharp Major, op. 30

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in E Major, Hob. XVI:31 (I)
CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1
LISZT Réminiscences de Norma

Semifinal Round – Recital

COUPERIN “Allemande la Verneville” from Pièces de clavecin
BRAHMS Variations on a Theme by Paganini, op. 35, Book II
CUI SHIGUANG Birds Chirp on the Silent Hill
BARBER Sonata, op. 26

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11 (III)

 

Final Round – Concerto 

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11


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Zhonghua Wei

ZHONGHUA WEI 魏中华

China  I  14

“Classical music is my best friend who can comfort me, inspire me, encourage me, and chat with me in my heart. It is an eternal, unsurpassed culture, and I hope I can become a narrator of music to help spread it.”

Zhonghua Wei began his piano studies piano with Jay Sun, his current teacher, when he was 5 years old, gave his solo recital debut at the age of 10, and by the age of 12 had studied the complete Well-Tempered Clavier of Bach, etudes of Chopin and Liszt, and Mozart Sonatas. Currently attending the Xinghai Conservatory Middle School, he has placed in several national Chinese competitions, including Pearl River Kayserburg (first), Steinway (second), and Xinghai Cup (first). And he just won the 2023 Hilton Head International Competition in South Carolina. Of his approach to music, he says: “The music itself drives me to play it. I think it is so interesting and beautiful—carrying life, history, and feelings—and I want to find out these things, to perform what the composers want to say, to integrate my own understanding in it.” Coming to the Cliburn Junior, he’s looking forward to receiving feedback from the jurors and other experts, and to hearing and making friends with the participants. Outside of the piano, Zhonghua enjoys reading, badminton, biking, and meditation.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in C Major, BWV 870
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 5 “Feux follets”
MEDTNER Sonata tragica, op. 39, no. 5

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata No. 14 in C Minor, K. 457 (I)
TCHAIKOVSKY Romance in F Major, op. 51, no. 5
BRAHMS Variations on a Theme by Paganini, op. 35, Book I

Semifinal Round – Recital

UNSUK CHIN Etudes Nos. 1, 4, 5
SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124 (II, III, IV)

Final Round – Concerto 

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124

 


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Taige Wang

TAIGE WANG 王泰格

United States  I  13

“I hope you can feel and be touched by what I intend to deliver from my music: the joy and misery, the hope and helplessness, the hatred and redemption—that you would say you were so moved, that you could not find words to describe.”

Taige Wang began piano at the age of 4 and gave his first public performance that year. The next year, he performed live on China Central Television and won his first competition; then, in 2018, at the age of 8, he gave his first full recital by the invitation of Steinway & Sons in Dalian, China, where he was born. He now has 35 competition wins to his name across Asia, Europe, and North America, and performance highlights include 2022 appearances at Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium, the Nixon Presidential Library, and Ognisko Polskie – the Polish Hearth in South Kensington, London, in the presence of HRH The Duke of Kent. Taige is also a prize-winning composer, with a passion for making audiences “easily empathize” with his music, often by drawing inspiration from everyday life. His Toothbrush Rhapsody Trio “describes everyone’s morning scene—brushing teeth. When people see the title, they become curious to know what this music is and are interested to listen to it.” This year, he was commissioned by the Chamber Society of Lincoln Center to write a piano trio; he’ll perform its debut at Alice Tully Hall in April. He currently attends The Juilliard School Pre-College and studies with Yoheved Kaplinsky and William Grant Naboré and is a From the Top fellow. Outside of piano, he loves solving Rubik’s Cubes and once founded a cubing club at his school; he plays violin and likes Italian Opera; and he used to compete in tennis, earning an award from the United States Tennis Association junior league. Taige received the prestigious Gold President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2022.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in A Major, BWV 888
LISZT Paganini Etude No. 6 in A Minor
MENDELSSOHN Variations sérieuses, op. 54

Quarterfinal Round

CHOPIN Nocturne in B Major, op. 9, no. 3
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 4 in E-flat Major, op. 7 (I)
LISZT Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata

Semifinal Round – Recital

BACH Aria variata alla maniera italiana, BWV 989
SCHUMANN Sonata No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22
BOLCOM Nine Bagatelles

Final Round – Concerto 

RACHMANINOV Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, op. 43


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Sizhe Wang

SIZHE WANG 王思哲

China  I  14

“To me, the existence of Classical Music in our modern generation is so mysteriously attractive, with such beautiful ancient color and light that nothing in this real world can compare with. It’s like a timeless fruit for the development of our civilization.”

Sizhe Wang began learning and practicing Chinese calligraphy at the age of 4, earlier than the piano. He remains deeply committed to the artform, which he says “constantly gives me fresh inspiration about music;” he is also “moved by the magical combination of ‘when East meets West,’” himself being “deeply rooted in East Asian culture” while learning and performing music from the West. He’s studied piano with with his current teacher, Vivian Li, for seven years and has attended the Middle School affiliated to Xinghai Conservatory of Music since 2021. Competition prizes include contests in Germany, Poland, China, and the United States; in 2017, at the age of 9, he made both his recital debut in Guangzhou and his concerto debut in Todi, Italy. The Cliburn Junior will be his first in-person piano competition in three years; “it will be the most phenomenal highlight of my life so far.”  Outside of the arts, Sizhe is a competitive swimmer who led his school’s swimming team to the national finals of the men’s 100m freestyle in the junior category. He’s also a big fan of trains and railroads, and has a significant collection of materials related to the railroad development of Southern China.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

LYADOV “Prélude” and “Valse” from Trois morceaux, op. 57
BACH Prelude and Fugue in G Minor, BWV 861
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in F-sharp Minor, op. 39, no. 3
CHOPIN Rondo à la mazur in F Major, op. 5

Quarterfinal Round

CHOPIN Nocturne in D-flat Major, op. 27, no. 2
MOZART Sonata No. 10 in C Major, K. 330 (I)
KABALEVSKY Sonata No. 3 in F Major, op. 46
SANCAN Toccata

Semifinal Round – Recital

ZHANG ZHAO Hani Love Song
MOMPOU Variations on a Theme of Chopin
CHOPIN Andante spianato et Grande polonaise brillante, op. 22

Final Round – Concerto 

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Major, op. 19

 


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Chihiro Sugawara

CHIHIRO SUGAWARA 菅原千尋

Japan  I  16

“Music transcends the barriers of religion, ethnicity, and language to move people and connect them.”

A student at the Music High School Attached to the Faculty of Music, Tokyo University of the Arts, Chihiro Sugawara has studied piano with Kaai Sugano for the past nine years and Kei Itoh for the last two. She’s won five piano competitions in Japan, including, most recently, the Beethoven International Piano Competition Asia and the Yamaha Junior Piano Competition. She comes now to the Cliburn Junior “to experience a world stage that I had never experienced before.” She hopes “to convey the wonder and excitement of music and spread it to many people.” Chihiro has performed with the Ashikaga Symphony Orchestra in Tochigi and the Geidai Philharmonia Orchestra in Tokyo, as well as the Yamaha Rising Pianists Concert. In her free time, she enjoys looking at paintings in museums.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in D Major, BWV 874
SCRIABIN Fantasie in B Minor, op. 28
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in D Major, op. 39, no. 9

Quarterfinal Round

BRAHMS Intermezzo in E-flat Minor, op. 118, no. 6
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 7 in D Major, op. 10, no. 3 (I)
LISZT Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata

Semifinal Round – Recital

TOKUYAMA Musica Nara, op. 25
BRAHMS Sonata No. 1 in C Major, op. 1

Final Round – Concerto 

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124


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Jan Schulmeister

JAN SCHULMEISTER
The Horchow Family Third Prize Winner

Czechia  I  16

“Music is a passion for me. It has the power to affect all movements of the mind, to enchant, to bewitch. Thanks to it, I can speak to people without words, but with the greatest urgency.”

Jan Schulmeister belongs to the sixth generation of the Černý-Schulmeister family, well-known in Czechia for musical ability, and began studying piano with his mother, Martina Schulmeisterová, and Eva Zonová at the age of 5. When he was 7, he started participating in competitions, to remarkable results. He has taken home more than 30 first place or other extraordinary awards, both in his home country and at international competitions in Italy, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Estonia, Austria, North Macedonia, and the United States. In 2018, he became the youngest member of the Petrof Art Family, under which he has recorded two CDs. Jan currently continues his studies with Martina Schulmeisterová at the Conservatory of P. J. Vejvanovský Kroměříž, and also takes lessons with Alena Vlasáková at the Janáček Academy of Performing Arts in Brno, Czech Republic, and Ewa Kupiec of the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien, Hannover, Germany. He has a passion for music education and finding innovative ways to reach younger audiences through concerts: “Together with appropriate explanations from me and from their teachers, we can make the ‘musical stories’ more accessible to them. I am always pleased with the subsequent reactions and interesting questions.” Outside of the practice room and stage, he enjoys reading about music history and astronomy, as well as recreational target shooting.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in C Major, BWV 846
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 10 in F Minor
SCRIABIN Etude in C-sharp Minor, op. 2, no. 1
BIZET–HOROWITZ Variations on a Theme from Carmen

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in E-flat Major, Hob. XVI:52 (I)
DEBUSSY “La cathédrale engloutie” from Préludes, Book I
JANÁČEK Piano Sonata 1.X.1905 “From the Street” (I)
LISZT Hungarian Rhapsody No. 10 in E Major

Semifinal Round – Recital

RANDALL MEYERS “Mantra” from Simplexity for Piano
RACHMANINOV Six moments musicaux, op. 16

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22 (II)

 

Final Round – Concerto 

SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22


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Modan Oyama

MODAN OYAMA 大山桃暖

Japan  I  17

“Music has emotions, like songs you hear when you’re sad and songs that give you courage. This is why I think it is possible to resonate with your heart by listening to it according to your current feelings. I think classical music has the ability to touch the heart; is deeply rooted in the people.”

Modan Oyama started studying classical ballet at 3 years old and piano at 4; both pursuits formed the foundation for his love of self-expression and of the stage at a very early age. When he was 12, he started focusing on the piano in earnest after he auditioned for the anime TV show “Forest of Piano” and was cast to record the main character’s childhood piano performances. He currently attends Osaka Gakugei Senior High School and has studied piano with Keiji Serizawa for 10 years and Ayami Serizawa for 6 years. His next piano revelation came in 2019, when he was attending the Imola Summer Piano Academy and Festival in Italy and first experienced the breadth of the global classical music family: “Ah, the world of the piano is so wide.” Having won eight competitions in Japan and placed in many others, Modan’s hopes for the Cliburn Junior include “being exposed to great music from all around the world” and “meeting and conversing with excellent musicians of my generation.” Outside of the piano, his free time is still very focused on ballet—both dancing and attending performances; he considers it “the foundation of my artistry.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in D Major, BWV 850
CHOPIN Etude in A Minor, op. 10, no. 2
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 6 in A Major, op. 82 (II, IV)

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata No. 2 in F Major, K. 280 (I)
CHOPIN Nocturne in B Major, op. 9, no. 3
LISZT Réminiscences de Don Juan

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCARLATTI Sonata in A Major, K. 24
CHOPIN Etude in C Major, op. 10, no. 7
CHOPIN Polonaise in F-sharp Minor, op. 44
LIEBERMANN Nocturne No. 4, op. 38
STRAVINSKY Trois mouvements de Pétrouchka

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22 (II)

Final Round – Concerto 

SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22

 


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Tiankun Ma

TIANKUN MA 马天坤

China  I  16

“The beauty of music is closer to the emotion itself than other artistic beauty. It comes from emotion, expresses emotion, and arouses emotion. I want to express my yearning for and pursuit of beautiful things through my performance.”

Tiankun Ma made his recital debut at the Henan Art Center in Zhengzhou in October 2016, at the age of 9. The following Fall, he began attending the Middle School Affiliated to China Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, where he has now studied with Yameng Huang for almost six years. He calls himself outgoing, conscientious, and in possession of strong self-control; he’s looking forward to the high-level competition at the Cliburn Junior and the learning opportunities that it will bring. Of classical music’s role in society, Tiankun believes that “the development and popularization of classical music is a symbol of the civilization of a nation and a city.” In addition to reading and sports, his musical curiosity leads him to explore operatic, symphonic, and chamber works in his spare time.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in C Major, BWV 846
LISZT “Gnomenreigen” from Two Concert Etudes
RAVEL La valse

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata No. 9 in D Major, K. 311 (I)
CHOPIN Mazurka in A Minor, op. 17, no. 4
LIGETI Etude No. 13 “L’escalier du diable”
CHOPIN Polonaise-fantaisie in A-flat Major, op. 61
SANCAN Toccata

Semifinal Round – Recital

HUANG TIAN Rice-husking Ballad in Awa Mountains
MESSAIEN “Regard des hauteurs” and “Noël” from Vingt regards sur l’enfant-Jésus
SCHUMANN Fantasie in C Major, op. 17

Final Round – Concerto 

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124

 


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Jaeuk Lim

JAEUK LIM 임재욱

South Korea  I  16

“Classical music should deliver hope and emotion to people, which will make the world more humane. I would like to be an active messenger. The degree of my happiness reaches the fullest while playing music on the stage, and I would like to share this fullest happiness with the audience through my performance.”

Jaeuk Lim finds artistic inspiration in the performances and passionate attitudes of other musicians: “they drive my artistry and motivate me to be more serious and excel in the music field.” Born in Incheon, he attended Yewon School and made his concerto debut at the Incheon Culture and Arts Center. Last year, he was accepted into the Seoul Arts High School, where he currently studies piano under Eun Jung Shon. With more than 10 top-three finishes at competitions in Korea, he is approaching his Cliburn Junior appearance with pure dedication: “In preparation for the Competition, I would like to push the limits and become more mature musically. Through the experience, I want to form a value in music and will exert myself to perform better.” He enjoys reading books, which he says informs his music, alongside meditation.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in E Major, BWV 854
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 5 “Feux follets”
CHOPIN Ballade No. 4 in F Minor, op. 52

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata No. 9 in D Major, K. 311
CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1
CHOPIN Scherzo No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 31

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 30 in E Major, op. 109
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
LISZT Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata

Final Round – Concerto 

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


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Seoeun Lee

SEOEUN LEE 이서은

South Korea  I  14

“I think everything I experience inspires my artistry. I want to express everything I see, hear, smell, touch, and feel with my music. I also want to express all the emotions of joy, anger, love, and sorrow with my music.”

Seoeun Lee started playing the piano at the age of 6: she happened to pass by a piano academy near her house in Suwon, was attracted by the sound, and entered the piano academy holding her mother’s hand. She progressed very quickly and says she started dreaming of becoming a pianist in earnest just a year later, after seeing 2009 Cliburn Silver Medalist Yeol Eum Son perform. She has had great success in competitions, including eight first-place finishes in Korea. In 2021, she made both her recital and concerto debuts in Seoul, and was selected as a culture and arts scholarship recipient by the Hyundai Motor Chung Mong-koo Foundation. Seoneun currently studies with Yejin Nho and likes watching piano concert videos on YouTube and attending live concerts in her free time. Knowing that physical health is of vital importance to a performer, she also practices Pilates to develop flexibility, relieve stress, and serve as a mood changer. She comes to the Cliburn Junior wanting “to experience harmony with friends from all over the world through music; I hope those experiences can help me develop into a more sincere and mature musician.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in F Major, BWV 880
CHOPIN Etude in G-sharp Minor, op. 25, no. 6
MENDELSSOHN Variations sérieuses, op. 54

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in E-flat Major, Hob. XVI:52 (I)
CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1
LISZT Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata

Semifinal Round – Recital

CHOPIN Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 35
RAVEL “Scarbo” from Gaspard de la nuit
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata

Final Round – Concerto 

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11

 


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Lukas Lee

LUKAS LEE 李璐王子

China  I  15

“Classical music has brought too much beauty to this generation, too much psychological comfort, too much spiritual treatment, and too many supplies for life. I think that no matter what era classical music is in—whether in the future or in the past—it is the greatest and most sacred art.”

Lukas Lee’s drive in his art stems from the influential people in his life—his teachers, family, and friends—as well as his deep connection with music: “When I play the piano, I feel the beauty of music, the greatness of music, and the sanctity of music.” He attends the Hebei Vocational Art College in his native Shijiazhuang and studies piano with Xiaohan Wang, head of the piano department at the Tianjin Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division. He made both his recital and concerto debuts last summer and is first prize winner of the Singapore International Piano Competition. He comes to the Cliburn Junior excited to visit the United States, “to see it and to feel the local culture” and, in the Competition, he’s hoping “to gain more academic progress, gain the progress of communication with the players, and show myself on this platform.” After practicing, he likes listening to lots of CDs and vinyl records; he also enjoys reading psychology books and science fiction, and playing soccer.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in B Major, BWV 892
LISZT Paganini Etude No. 3 “La campanella”
DUTILLEUX “Choral et variations” from Sonata pour piano

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in E-flat Major, Hob. XVI:52
RACHMANINOV “Elégie” from Morceaux de fantaisie, op. 3
BARTÓK Piano Sonata, Sz. 80

Semifinal Round – Recital

CHOPIN 12 Etudes, op. 25
ZHANG ZHAO Numa Ame

Final Round – Concerto 

SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22

 


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Saehyun Kim

SAEHYUN KIM 김세현

South Korea  I  16

“Leonard Bernstein once said that a great artist ‘leaves us with a feeling that something is right in the world,’ and similarly, Robert Schumann wrote, ‘To send light into the darkness of men’s hearts—such is the duty of the artist.’ Inspired by these artists’ words, I endeavor every day to create music that will reach out a consoling hand to the audience so that they feel understood and reassured in a turbulent world.”

Growing up in Seoul, Saehyun Kim made both his recital and concerto debuts in the capital city, in 2018 and 2019 respectively. He attended the Yewon School for two years and notable engagements during that timeframe include a performance with the Korean Symphony Orchestra and appearances on KBS Classic FM and JTBC Classic Today. He moved to Boston in 2021, where he studies piano with HaeSun Paik at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School and also attends the Walnut Hill School for the Arts. The last two years have seen four competition wins in the United States, at the Morningside Music Bridge International Concerto Competition, New England Conservatory Preparatory School Concerto Competition (Categories B and C), and the New York International Classical Music Competition; he is also a current Lang Lang International Music Foundation Young Scholar and last fall appeared on both the Lang Lang & Friends Virtual Concert and the organization’s Gala Concert. Saehyun is a member of the New England Tennis Academy (NETA) and has competed in USTA tournaments; he also heads the Table Tennis Club at his school.

 


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in E Major, BWV 854
SCRIABIN Etude in C-sharp Minor, op. 42, no. 5
SCRIABIN Etude in C-sharp Minor, op. 2, no. 1
LISZT Fantasy and Fugue on the Theme B-A-C-H

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in D Major, Hob. XVI:42
RAVEL “Scarbo” from Gaspard de la nuit
CHOPIN Polonaise-fantaisie in A-flat Major, op. 61

Semifinal Round – Recital

BOLCOM Nine Bagatelles
LISZT Sonata in B Minor

Final Round – Concerto 

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11


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Zihan Jin

ZIHAN JIN 金子涵

China  I  14

“Classical music is the most profound art of mankind. Through the music I find a better world, and I would like to tell my story to the people through these notes and make the world more beautiful.”

Zihan Jin’s first piano teacher was his father, who he says filled his life with many different kinds of music since he was born. He has studied with Yun Sun at the Secondary School of Shanghai Conservatory of Music for five years and made both his recital and concerto debuts in the city—his hometown—in 2021. Competition wins include several in China, with victories in Swedish and Swiss contest as well; he also had a video selected for the program of “Global Classical Music Talk” of American Chinese TV, where he won the recording and broadcasting certificate of Talented Young Players. Of his approach to musicmaking, Zihan says: “I would like to sing with my fingers through the sound of the music. And I would like to reach the audience; together we meet the composers and discover inspiration from the great genius of these great composers.” Last year, he watched the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition closely, calling it “the competition of my dreams in the future.” Of his hobbies, he lists reading, playing chamber music, and soccer.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH Prelude and Fugue in C Major, BWV 870
CHOPIN Etude in A Minor, op. 25, no. 11
CHOPIN Scherzo No. 4 in E Major, op. 54

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 11 in B-flat Major, op. 22 (I)
CHOPIN Berceuse in D-flat Major, op. 57
LISZT Rhapsodie espagnole

Semifinal Round – Recital

LISZT “Tarantella” from Venezia e Napoli
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 10 in F Minor
CHOPIN Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 35
ZHANG ZHAO Pi Huang

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124 (II, III, IV)

Final Round – Concerto 

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124

 


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Mi Hou

MI HOU 侯米

China  I  15

“Classical music is distant, holy, mysterious, and intimate to our generation. Through their music, composers paint a picture of the society and times in which they lived. I can experience the greatness and achievements of another generation through its music. Their music can help inspire many young generations nowadays, like me.”

Mi Hou’s exposure to music began before he was born; his mother plays many instruments, including piano, accordion, and guzheng. He was drawn to the piano in his home naturally and started lessons at the age of 4 in his native Yangzhong. When he was only 7, his talent and interest were so strong that he started down the path toward being a professional musician and finding a professional teacher. He studied with Chuan Qin from 2017 to 2018 in Shandong. His clear educational goals and higher artistic pursuits meant regularly taking 10-hour train trips to Beijing, winning several competitions in China, practicing or studying for eight hours per day, and eventually moving to the capital city over the following years. He began studies with Jin Zhang 4 years ago and was admitted to the Central Conservatory of Music Middle School in 2020. Of his teacher, Mi says: “he told me that artistry is about getting to the essence of the music to such an extent that the performance takes the audience beyond itself, transcending the everyday and transporting them to another place where they can dream or imagine.” Among his hobbies, he lists listening to music, watching movies, reading history books, traveling, and playing video games, board games, Lego, and golf.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in G Minor, BWV 861
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in A Minor, op. 39, no. 6
LISZT Rhapsodie espagnole 

Quarterfinal Round

BACH–BUSONI Chaconne in D Minor (from Violin Partita No. 2, BWV 1004)
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 7 in D Major, op. 10, no. 3 (I)
CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in D Major, op. 39, no. 9

Semifinal Round – Recital

LISZT Hungarian Rhapsody No. 15 (“Rákóczi March”)
QIGANG CHEN Instants d’un opéra de Pékin
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, op. 83 (I)
LISZT Réminiscences de Norma

Final Round – Concerto 

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Major, op. 19

 


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Seokyoung Hong

SEOKYOUNG HONG 홍석영
Bernice Gressman Meyerson First Prize Winner

South Korea  I  15

“I hope to be a pianist that can remind and somehow transfer the audience’s own personal stories. From those reminded experiences, I hope they find happiness, relief, and even nostalgia. Beyond thinking about the stories from the past, I also hope they can imagine lots of things while and after listening to my performance.”

Seokyoung Hong has had several first or second-place finishes at international competitions in Korea, Switzerland, and the United States. Following two years at the Yewon School in his native Seoul, he moved to Boston in 2022 to study piano at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School with HaeSun Paik while also attending the Walnut Hill School for the Arts. He’s found himself inspired by his new environment: “Nature inspires me in various ways—its huge size, marvelous detail, the beauty of nature itself, and a lot more. For instance, the enormous entities like the ocean and the universe motivate me but also make me feel that I am only a small human.” Seokyoung finds inspiration and motivation from the two most recent winners of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, South Korea’s Yekwon Sunwoo and Yunchan Lim, which was part of his motivation for taking part in the Cliburn Junior. He also hopes to develop his piano playing and artistry, as well as to build experience performing for large audiences. His interest in composing leads him to constantly study, he says, but he also enjoys riding his bike, playing chess, and participating in the table tennis club at school.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in G-sharp Minor, BWV 863
LISZT Concert Etude No. 2 “La leggierezza”
PROKOFIEV Visions fugitives, op. 22, nos. 2, 10, 3
PROKOFIEV Toccata in D Minor, op. 11

 

Quarterfinal Round

RACHMANINOV Prelude in G Major, op. 32, no. 5
HAYDN Sonata in E Major, Hob. XVI:31 (I)
CHOPIN Ballade No. 2 in F Major, op. 38
DUTILLEUX “Choral et variations” from Sonata pour piano

Semifinal Round – Recital

JURI SEO  Doremi Variations
CHOPIN 12 Etudes, op. 25

Semifinal Round – Concerto Movement

RACHMANINOV Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, op. 43 (vars. 18-24)

Final Round – Concerto 

RACHMANINOV Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, op. 43

 


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Andrew Gu

ANDREW GU

United States  I  16

“Classical music has the ability to inspire and uplift the human spirit. It has the power to move us emotionally and transport us to another place and time. In a world that is often filled with negativity and uncertainty, classical music can provide a sense of hope and beauty that can be hard to find elsewhere.”

Andrew Gu won his first international competition in 2015—the Grotrian-Steinweg; he followed that with wins at the Rosalyn Tureck (New York), Chopin (Hartford), Ettlingen (Germany), and Salzburg Festival (Austria), among others. He currently attends Miramonte High School in Orinda, California, and studies piano on the other U.S. coast with with Alexander Korsantia and Hitomi Koyama of the New England Conservatory Preparatory School. He made his concerto debut in 2020 with The Concord Orchestra and appeared on NPR’s From the Top that same year. Of his approach to music, he says: “One of the main things that drive my artistry is a desire to connect with others through music. I believe that music has the power to transcend language and cultural barriers, and I hope to use my performances to create a sense of unity and understanding.” Andrew lists his interests outside of piano as bicycling, coding, cooking, and value investing.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in F Minor, BWV 881
CHOPIN Etudes, op. 10, nos. 1, 4, 5
CHOPIN Scherzo No. 3 in C-sharp Minor, op. 39

Quarterfinal Round

CHOPIN Nocturne in F Major, op. 15, no. 1
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 7 in D Major, op. 10, no. 3 (I, II)
RAVEL “Scarbo” from Gaspard de la nuit

Semifinal Round – Recital

VINE Five Bagatelles
LISZT Sonata in B Minor

Final Round – Concerto 

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 1 in D-flat Major, op. 10

 


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Xuanyan Jessie Gong

XUANYAN JESSIE GONG 龚暄妍

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.


REPERTOIRE

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


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Alyssa Gabrilovich

ALYSSA GABRILOVICH

United States  I  17

“Regardless of our differences, we understand each other through classical music. It is amazing that even today, musicians play pieces that were composed centuries ago. Although society has been changing due to exponential growth of technology, the art of classical music could never be replaced.”

Alyssa Gabrilovich, a junior at Harriton High School near Philadelphia, has studied piano with Dr. Igor Resnianski at the Nelly Berman School of Music for nine years. She says her primary goal when performing is “being able to elicit emotions in other people through the use of imagination” and finds inspiration in the “distinctive colors, images, and meanings that each piece possesses.” Her dedication to her art has certainly been evidenced in her 43 competition prizes to date, as well as scholarships from the Chopin Foundation of the United States, EONClassics, and the Chicago and Philadelphia International Music Festivals. She’s been to Fort Worth twice for the PianoTexas International Festival & Academy and has also participated in festivals in New Orleans, Columbia, Chicago, and Philadelphia. Her host of concert engagements to date have included appearances at Weill Recital Hall (Carnegie Hall), Kimmel Center, and Merkin Hall; she’s been featured on WWFM (New Jersey), WRTI (Philadelphia), and NPR’s From the Top. Her love of culture extends to other areas of her life: she speaks English, Spanish, and Russian; participates in the Asian Culture Club at her school; and enjoys traveling and singing.

 


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in F Minor, BWV 857
RACHMANINOV Étude-tableau in C Minor, op. 39, no. 1
SHCHEDRIN–PLETNEV  “Prologue” and “Horse Racing” from Anna Karenina

Quarterfinal Round

 

SHOSTAKOVICH Prelude and Fugue in E Major, op. 87, no. 9
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 6 in F Major, op. 10, no. 2 (I)
OSSIP GABRILOVICH Melody in E Minor, op. 8
MESSIAEN “Première communion de la vierge” from Vingt regards sur l’enfant-Jésus
RAVEL “Une barque sur l’océan” from Miroirs

Semifinal Round – Recital

PROKOFIEV Visions fugitives, op. 22, nos. 1, 4, 6, 9
PROKOFIEV Symphony No. 1 in D Major, op. 25 (I, II)
VINE Five Bagatelles
BACH–BUSONI Chaconne in D Minor (from Violin Partita No. 2, BWV 1004)

Final Round – Concerto 

GRIEG Piano Concerto in A Minor, op. 16


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Steven Ruochong Cui

STEVEN RUOCHONG CUI 崔若冲

United States  I  17

“The collective effort of all musicians in pursuing their craft, perfecting their sound, and holding faith in the power of their work, classical music can continue to reach more audiences, touch more hearts, and unite more through this universal language.”

Steven Ruochong Cui began piano at the age of 4 in his native Chengdu, China. After his family immigrated to the United States in 2015, he continued his studies with San-Qing Lu-Bennaman and won numerous regional competitions, as well as the International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition for Children and Youth (Poland). Since 2017, he’s been in the pre-college division of The Juilliard School under Yoheved Kaplinsky and Yiheng Yang, and 2022 saw both a first-prize finish at the International ArtePiano Competition and full scholarships to the Aspen Music Festival and School and the Oxford Piano Festival. He is an alumnus of NPR’s From the Top and the Lang Lang Foundation Young Scholars. At school, in addition to serving as the class representative in student government and a member of the Ethics Bowl team, Steven is an editor for the student newspaper—an interest certainly driven by his aptitude as a storyteller. Of his music, he says: “What drives my artistry is the knowledge that every note I play is the authentic story of other human beings, which gives me the responsibility of handling it, of playing it, with the utmost care. These people could be from centuries ago, but their music—their story—never diminishes or dies out. In fact, their sentiments and emotions often resonate even more in the modern day.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in G-sharp Minor, BWV 887
BRAHMS Klavierstücke, op. 118, nos. 1 and 2
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 10 in F Minor

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in C Minor, Hob. XVI:20
CHOPIN Nocturne in B Major, op. 62, no. 1
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 1 in F Minor, op. 1

Semifinal Round – Recital

VINE Sonata No. 1 (I)
CHOPIN Sonata No. 3 in B Minor, op. 58

Final Round – Concerto 

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

 


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Chenxi Chu

CHENXI CHU 褚晨熙

China  I  14

“Classical music is our closest companion on the road of progress. In the future, I hope more children will be exposed to classical music at an early age, which will help them to explore and pursue beauty.”

Music has been intrinsic to Chenxi Chu’s life since the beginning: “From the first tune my mother hummed to me when I was a kid to the first piece I learned to play, classical music accompanies me to sleep and brings me much happiness. It cultivates my aesthetic appreciation and develops my rational thinking. For me, music is as indispensable as air.” A student at the Music Middle School Affiliated to Shanghai Conservatory of Music, he has studied with Zhe Tang and Fan Zhou for five years. A prizewinner of several competitions in China, the Cliburn Junior marks his first international piano contest. In addition to taking on the performance challenge and the benefits he hopes that will bring, he also looks forward to building many friendships while in Dallas, “exchanging our interpretations of music and our ideas with each other, and through them experiencing the diversity of the world.” His curiosity about the world has fostered a love of travel; he enjoys the scenery and architecture of other cultures, and experiencing their local lifestyles and delicacies. His other interests include cooking for friends and family, listening to all kinds of music, and playing video games—which feel like a new world to him.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in F-sharp Major, BWV 858
CHOPIN Etude in F Major, op. 10, no. 8
CHOPIN Barcarolle in F-sharp Major, op. 60
HAMELIN The Minute Waltz, in Seconds

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata No. 15 in F Major, K. 533 (I)
MENDELSSOHN Lieder ohne Worte, op. 30, no. 6
MENDELSSOHN Variations sérieuses, op. 54
WAGNER–LISZT “Isoldens Liebestod” from Tristan and Isolde

Semifinal Round – Recital

VINE Bagatelles Nos. 2 and 3
SCHUMANN Davidsbündlertänze, op. 6

Final Round – Concerto 

GRIEG Piano Concerto in A Minor, op. 16

 


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Eddison Chen

EDDISON CHEN

United States   I  13

“Classical Music is a genre that unites us all in an increasingly polarized and divisive world. We should use the ease of listening to it today to make more music for our generation. I hope to someday be able to make music of my own.”

Kansas City native Eddison Chen began taking home medals at national and international piano competitions when he was 8 years old, placing at the Chicago, Steinway, Kaufman Music Center (New York), and Music Teachers of North America, as well as the International Young Artist Competition in Washington, D.C. His grandmother was his original encouragement for starting lessons, and it wasn’t long before he was “writing random pieces of ‘music.’” He is currently studying with Steven Spooner of the Peabody Institute and 2013 Cliburn third-prize winner Sean Chen of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory. He applied for the Cliburn Junior hoping to gain valuable concert experience, to learn from great artists, and to meet new friends. He says the ultimate goal and motivation of all his piano studies is “to make music that is unlike most music of today,” and hopes to one day “compose a score from a story.” Outside of the piano, Eddison likes to play chess and study math; he’s involved in Math Club at his school and is a National MathCounts finalist. He also enjoys looking at maps and measuring distances between places in the world.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH  Prelude and Fugue in C-sharp Major, BWV 872
LIGETI  Etude No. 4 “Fanfares”
LISZT Mephisto Waltz No. 1

Quarterfinal Round

HAYDN Sonata in A-flat Major, Hob. XVI:46 (I)
CHOPIN Nocturne in D-flat Major, op. 27, no. 2
SCHUMANN Papillons, op. 2
GERSHWIN–WILD I Got Rhythm

Semifinal Round – Recital

RAVEL “Alborada del gracioso” from Miroirs
KURTÁG Selections from Játékok
LISZT Grandes études de Paganini

Final Round – Concerto 

RACHMANINOV Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, op. 43

 


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Orion Weiss

ORION WEISS – UNITED STATES

One of the most sought-after soloists and chamber music collaborators of his generation, Orion Weiss is widely regarded as a “brilliant pianist” (The New York Times) with “powerful technique and exceptional insight” (The Washington Post). He has dazzled audiences with his passionate, lush sound and performed with dozens of orchestras in North America including the Chicago Symphony, Boston Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and New York Philharmonic.

Recent seasons have seen Orion in performances for the Lucerne Festival, Denver Friends of Chamber Music, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, 92nd Street Y, and at the Aspen, Bard, Ravinia, and Grand Teton summer festivals. Other highlights include a performance of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, a live stream with the Minnesota Orchestra, the release of his recording of Christopher Rouse’s Seeing, and recordings of Gershwin’s complete works for piano and orchestra with the Buffalo Philharmonic and JoAnn Falletta.

Orion can be heard on the Naxos, Telos, Bridge, First Hand, Yarlung, and Artek labels. Known for his affinity for chamber music, he performs regularly with violinists Augustin Hadelich, William Hagen, Benjamin Beilman, and James Ehnes; pianists Michael Brown and Shai Wosner; cellist Julie Albers; and the Ariel, Parker, and Pacifica Quartets. In recent seasons, he has also performed with the San Francisco Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Toronto Symphony, National Arts Centre, Israel Philharmonic, and Orpheus Chamber Orchestras.

A native of Ohio, Orion Weiss attended the Cleveland Institute of Music and made his Cleveland Orchestra debut performing Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in 1999. That same year, with less than 24 hours’ notice, he stepped in to replace André Watts for a performance of Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. His list of awards includes the Classical Recording Foundation’s Young Artist of the Year, Gilmore Young Artist Award, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and more. In 2004, he graduated from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Emanuel Ax.


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Jeffrey Swann

JEFFREY SWANN – UNITED STATES

Jeffrey Swann enjoys an international performing career which has taken him throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America, and Asia. He won first prize in the Dino Ciani Competition sponsored by La Scala in Milan, a gold medal at the Queen Elisabeth Competition, a bronze medal at the Cliburn Competition, and top honors at the Warsaw Chopin, Vianna da Motta, and Montreal Competitions, as well as the Young Concert Artists auditions in New York City. His large and varied repertoire includes more than 60 concertos, as well as solo works ranging from Bach to Boulez.

In addition to presenting lecture/recitals worldwide, Jeffrey has performed with the orchestras of Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Indiana, Dallas, Saint Louis, Phoenix, Houston, Lexington, Baltimore, and Minneapolis; and in Europe with the orchestras of Rotterdam, The Hague, Belgian National and Radio, Santa Cecilia, La Scala, Maggio Fiorentino (Florence), RAI Turin and Rome, Südwest Rundfunk, Bayerischer Rundfunk, the Prague Philharmonic, Radio France de Montpellier, and the London Philharmonia, among many others. The conductors with whom he has performed include Zdenek Macal, David Robertson, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Marek Janowski, William Steinberg, Kazimirz Kord, Myung-Whun Chung, Roberto Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Daniele Gatti, and Leonard Slatkin. Recent concerts include the complete Beethoven Sonatas series at Bargemusic (NY), and recitals and master classes in Arizona, Washington D.C., Sicily, Israel, Italy, Puerto Rico, Portugal, and the Republic of Georgia.

In addition, Jeffrey is an internationally renowned Wagner scholar. He lectures throughout the United States illustrating from the piano and is a frequent guest of the Bayreuth Festival. He has written extensively on Wagner, most recently an article on Wagner and Proust, published by Oxford University Press.

He studied with Alexander Uninsky at Southern Methodist University and with Beveridge Webster and Adele Marcus at The Juilliard School, where he received his B.M., M.M., and D.M.A. Degrees. He has made recordings for Ars Polona, Deutsche-Gramophon, RCA-Italy, Replica, Fonit-Cetra, Music & Arts, and Agorá. His CD, “The Virtuoso Liszt” (Music & Arts), won the Liszt Society’s Grand Prix, and his first volume of the Complete Beethoven Sonatas (Agorá) was chosen one of the Best of the Year by Fanfare magazine. His recordings are now available online through NAR Classical.

Jeffrey Swann served as artistic director of the Dino Ciani Festival & Academia (Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy) and artistic director of the Scuola Normale Superiore’s Concert Series (Pisa). He is currently Professor of Piano at New York University and the President’s Distinguished Artist-in-Residence at Northern Arizona University, where he was recently awarded an Honorary Doctorate.

 


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Roberto Plano

ROBERTO PLANO – ITALY

Italian native Roberto Plano has performed all over the world, appearing with prestigious orchestras (Kremerata Baltica, Houston Symphony, Berliner Philarmoniker Camerata, Festival Strings Luzern) under the direction of renowned conductors such as Sir Neville Marriner, James Conlon, Pinchas Zuckerman, and Miguel Harth-Bedoya. As a recitalist he played at Lincoln Center, Sala Verdi, Salle Cortot, Wigmore Hall, and Herculessaal, and at the internationally acclaimed Newport Festival, Portland Piano Festival, Ravinia Festival, Gilmore International Keyboard Festival (USA), Chopin Festival (Poland), Gijon International Piano Festival (Spain), and Bologna Festival (Italy). An avid chamber musician as well, Roberto played with some of the most prestigious string quartets in the world such as the Takács, Cremona, St. Petersburg, Fine Arts, Jupiter, and Muir.

First Prize Winner at the 2001 Cleveland International Piano Competition, Prize Winner at the Honens, Dublin, Sendai, Geza Anda, and Valencia Competitions, and Finalist at the 2005 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Roberto’s engaging personality has made him a favorite guest on radio programs such as NPR’s Performance Today, and on TV shows for PBS, France’s Mezzo and Japan’s NHK. Plano was also named the Best Ensemble Performer at the Honens Competition for his performances with cellist Shauna Rolston and soprano Ingrid Attrot, and he was the winner of the Best Recital and Best Performance of a Commissioned Work prizes at the Dublin International Piano Competition.

He has recorded for Decca, Brilliant, Azica, Arktos, Sipario, DaVinci, and Concerto labels, being awarded the maximum 5-star rating by several music magazines. Amadeus, the most widely-read music magazine in Italy, featured Roberto twice on the magazine’s cover, with CDs of music by Alexander Scriabin and forgotten Italian composer Andrea Luchesi. In 2013, he performed the world premiere of Luchesi’s two piano concertos with the Busoni Chamber Orchestra in Trieste, Italy, with Massimo Belli conducting; the performance included a never-before heard cadenza written for the concerto by Mozart. Roberto’s debut award-winning recording for DECCA Classics was released in 2016, featuring the Harmonies Poétiqueset Religieuses by Liszt, which have not been recorded by Decca since the 1960s.

Roberto Plano studied at the Verdi Conservatory in Milan, the Ecole “Cortot” in Paris, and the Lake Como Academy. During his career he has been awarded several prizes, including the Lumen Claro, previously assigned to influential Italian people like soprano Barbara Frittoli, stylist Ottavio Missoni, and economist Mario Monti. He has been described by The Chronicle in Glens Falls, NY, the “Pavarotti of the Piano” for his lyricism, and also defined by Chicago radio commentator Paul Harvey, Jr. as the heir to Rubinstein and Horowitz. The New York Times music critic Anthony Tommasini wrote: “This Italian pianist showed artistic maturity beyond his years… there was a wonderful clarity and control of inner voices in his performances.” A member of the faculty at Boston University since 2016, Roberto joined Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music as Associate Professor of Piano in August 2018.


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Katia Skanavi

KATIA SKANAVI – GREECE/RUSSIA

Pianist Katia Skanavi’s combination of Greek-Russian cultural roots and Central European musical traditions results in music-making with a unique blend of spontaneity, intuition, and erudition.

Equally active as a soloist and chamber musician, Katia has appeared worldwide with conductors James Conlon, Kurt Masur, Sir Yehudi Menuhin, and Jaap van Zweden, among others, in collaborations with the DSO Berlin, Salzburg Camerata, Kremerata Baltica, Orchestre National de France, and major orchestras of Russia, as well as with the symphony orchestras of Cincinnati, Dallas, Indianapolis, San Francisco, and Tokyo. She has presented recitals in major venues across Europe, Asia, and North America, and partnered with violinists Gidon Kremer, Leonidas Kavakos, Maxim Vengerov, and Yuri Bashmet; cellist Truls Mørk; and the Rossetti String Quartet, in concert and recordings.

Katia’s wide range of interests is reflected in various projects: her development of theater works combining poetry, video projections, and dance with music has been presented in major theaters in Moscow, and she collaborates regularly with living composers, including Arvo Pärt, Alfred Schnittke, Jörg Widmann, Carl Vine, and John Corigliano. Her discography includes several live recitals released on Lyrinx label, as well as an all-Chopin recording, which was selected by Gramophone magazine as its record of the month.

Katia Skanavi began her musical studies in Moscow at the Gnessin School for Gifted Children, and at the age of 12 made her debut in the Grand Hall of the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, performing Kabalevskyʼs Third Piano Concerto under the composerʼs direction. She has diplomas from the Conservatoire National de Paris, Cleveland Institute of Music, and Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, counting among her teachers Bruno Rigutto, Sergey Babayan, Vladimir Krainev, and Vera Gornostaev. She was provided early career support through her prizes at the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud (Paris), Van Cliburn International Piano Competition (Fort Worth), and the Grand Prix Maria Callas (Athens) Competitions.


JUNIOR COMPETITION LINKS
2023 JUNIOR COMPETITION   I  JURY   I  APPLICATION & RULES  I  ROUNDS & REPERTOIRE

Jane Coop

JANE COOP – CANADA

Elegant, experienced, and brilliant, are words to describe pianist Jane Coop who takes her art form to a higher stratum. Renowned for her appealing performance style, she is considered Canada’s premier Mozart interpreter by The Calgary Herald and has consistently been praised for her capacity to graciously carry the sensitivity and spirit of the music she plays, right to her listeners.

Jane has worked with prominent conductors such as Sir Andrew Davis, John Eliot Gardiner, and Rudolf Barshai, and with orchestras around the world including the Royal Philharmonic, Seattle and Oregon Symphonies, Hong Kong Philharmonic, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Orchestra, and most orchestras in Canada. As a respected concerto soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician, she has made appearances in eminent halls such as the Bolshoi Hall in St. Petersburg, the Kennedy Center, Alice Tully Hall, Roy Thomson Hall, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, the Beijing Concert Hall, and the Salle Gaveau in Paris. In her own country, she has given concerts in every province, as well as Yukon. Recent highlights include a concerto with the Saskatoon Symphony and a residency at the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance in Nova Scotia, among solo and chamber recitals.

Jane has recorded extensively and garnered multiple JUNO nominations. This newest title, her 17th recording to her discography, Three Keyboard Masters: Bach, Beethoven, & Rachmaninoff, reflects the depth of her pianistic canon. She is also fortunate to have four concerto recordings, various chamber works recorded with the Satie String Quartet of Paris, and the complete Beethoven Piano and Violin Sonatas with esteemed colleague Andrew Dawes in her list.

Jane’s major teachers were Anton Kuerti and Leon Fleisher. Rounding out her significant contribution to Canadian music, she served as Professor of Piano and Chamber Music at the University of British Columbia’s School of Music for more than three decades. In December 2012, for her years of artistic dedication to this country, she was appointed to the Order of Canada.

Jane Coop is a Steinway Artist.


JUNIOR COMPETITION LINKS
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Adam Golka

ADAM GOLKA – UNITED STATES/POLAND

Pianist Adam Golka has been regularly on the concert stage since the age of 16, when he won first prize at the 2nd China Shanghai International Piano Competition. He has also received the Gilmore Young Artist Award and the Max I. Allen Classical Fellowship Award from the American Pianists Association.

This season began with recitals for Philip Lorenz International Keyboard Concerts and Mesa Arts Center, where Adam presented a program that bridges two long-term repertoire interests: Beethoven Sonatas, which he has explored and performed through his gripping 32@32 series (he paired each sonata with a short film that explored perspectives on the Sonatas, and hosted an amalgam of distinguished guests, from astrophysicists to Alfred Brendel) and Brahms, whose complete piano works he will perform and record over the next few years.

Other highlights of the 2022–2023 season include: Fazil Say’s “Silk Road” Concerto (1994) paired with de Falla’s Nights in the Garden of Spain with the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra and the Asheville Symphony Orchestra; Tchaikovsky 1 with Daniel Meyer and the Erie Philharmonic; Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue in Spain, with the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada; and a duo recital tour with violinist Itamar Zorman with performances at Wigmore Hall and elsewhere.

As a concerto soloist, he has appeared with dozens of orchestras, including the BBC Scottish Symphony, NACO (Ottawa), Warsaw Philharmonic, Shanghai Philharmonic, as well as the San Francisco, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, New Jersey, and San Diego Symphonies. He has enjoyed collaborations with conductors such as Donald Runnicles, Pinchas Zukerman, Mark Wigglesworth, and Joseph Swensen, and he has made countless concerto appearances with his brother, conductor Tomasz Golka. Adam gave his Carnegie Stern Auditorium debut in 2010 with the New York Youth Symphony and his New York recital debut at Alice Tully Hall, presented by the Musicians Emergency Fund.

Adam has recorded works by Beethoven, Schumann, and Brahms for First Hand Records, and he has premiered works composed for him by Richard Danielpour, Michael Brown, and Jarosław Gołębiowski.

Adam Golka is deeply indebted to his two main teachers, 1985 Cliburn Gold Medalist José Feghali, with whom he studied at Texas Christian University, and Leon Fleisher, with whom he worked as part of the Artist Diploma program at the Peabody Conservatory. Since finishing his formal studies, he has continued to develop his artistry through private mentorship from his favorite artists: Alfred Brendel, Richard Goode, Murray Perahia, Ferenc Rados, and András Schiff, who invited him to give recitals at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr and Tonhalle Zürich for the “Sir András Schiff Selects” concert series.

 


JUNIOR COMPETITION LINKS
2023 JUNIOR COMPETITION   I  JURY   I  APPLICATION & RULES  I  ROUNDS & REPERTOIRE

Tanya Karyagina

Tanya Karyagina

Praised for her “brilliant fluency, outstanding tone quality,” (La Libre Belgique) and “elegant alternation of tragedy and optimism” (Fort Worth Star-Telegram), American pianist Tanya Karyagina made her concerto debut at only 9 years old with the Kazakh Chamber Orchestra. Closer to home, she has also appeared as a soloist with the Fort Worth Chamber and TCU Symphony Orchestras, among others. She has won top prizes in nearly 30 national and international piano competitions.

As an avid chamber musician and entrepreneur, Dr. Karyagina is the founder and pianist for the ALORTA Trio together with violinist Ordabek Duissen and cellist Alan Steele. She is also the founder and director of Southwestern Piano Ensemble, a student ensemble that performs repertoire written and arranged for multiple pianos.

Dr. Karyagina’s passion for training and equipping the next generation of pianists and musicians has led her to establish the Tanya Karyagina Piano School – a school which provides world-class training for the next generation of piano students. She has served on music faculty in many higher education institutions: Vanguard University, Tarrant County College, Dallas Baptist University, Texas Christian University, USC’s Thornton School of Music, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Texas Baptist College.

Apart from her teaching and piano performance career, Dr. Karyagina plays harpsichord professionally and is also an aspiring violinist. She likes spending time with friends and family, being outdoors, hiking, walking, jogging, swimming, cooking, reading, traveling, and experiencing new cultures.

Mikhail Berestnev

Mikhail Berestnev

Equally in demand as a recitalist, soloist, and chamber musician, Mikhail Berestnev brings to every performance the experiences of a career spanning the globe, including Australia, Ireland, Russia, Belgium, Brazil, and Spain, in addition to concert halls across the United States. Recent collaborations include solo appearances under the direction of Maestro Hector Guzman, and composer and conductor Dr. Robert Xavier Rodriguez; in chamber music with members of the Dallas Symphony; as part of the MAKE Trio; and with the Julius String Quartet.

Mr. Berestnev is artist in residence with the St. Matthews Cathedral Arts Program in Dallas, guest artist and collaborative pianist with the “Musica Nova” Ensemble at the University of Texas at Dallas, collaborative pianist at The Dallas Opera Family & Outreach Program and Texas Ballet Theater, and an artist of Cliburn in the Classroom.

Dzmitry Ulasiuk

Dzmitry Ulasiuk

Pianist Dzmitry Ulasiuk was raised in an environment of classical music in Minsk, Belarus. He started professional piano studies at age 16 and performed a solo recital of all Chopin music one year later. While working on his doctorate in Belarus, he was recruited to study at TCU. He then continued his studies at SMU, and finally completed his doctorate degree in piano performance at the University of North Texas. A laureate of 17 international piano competitions, Dr. Ulasiuk has performed worldwide, in both solo recitals and with orchestras. In addition to concertizing, he loves to teach and has a thriving piano studio in Plano.

For his Carnegie debut, a critic wrote, “There are times when a reviewer simply decides to put pencil and paper away and enjoy the music, and this was one of those times” (New York Concert Review). Dr. Ulasiuk received critical acclaim for his first two commercial CDs under the Centaur Records label. He is currently working on a third CD of all French music. www.dzmitryulasiuk.com

Benjamin Loeb

Benjamin Loeb

Benjamin Loeb is an accomplished conductor, pianist, arranger, educator, arts administrator, and entrepreneur. As a conductor, Mr. Loeb has led orchestras across the United States and around the world. His varied projects range across all genres, from concerts of Beethoven symphonies and recordings with Yo-Yo Ma, tours with popular rock musicians, and world premieres of the most cutting-edge contemporary music. At the invitation of the U.S. Department of State, Mr. Loeb toured Argentina and Uruguay as an Artistic Ambassador, performing recitals of the music of American composer Scott Joplin and giving masterclasses and workshops with youth orchestras and young musicians. A graduate of Harvard, Juilliard, Curtis, and Peabody, Mr. Loeb brings his passion for high-level performance into the education sphere through leadership and direction of several youth orchestras and international conducting workshops.

He lives in Plano, TX, with his wife, Quyen, and three children. Mr. Loeb’s far-ranging interests do not limit him to music; he is a proud Rotary Paul Harris Fellow, and has directed plays, cooked gourmet meals for 65, tutored over 500 people in test preparation for the Princeton Review, and played and enjoyed almost every sport. Moreover (or most importantly), he is a lifetime Dallas Cowboys fan.

Robin Bangert

Robin Bangert

As a professional dancer for 14 years and a student of ballet since age 5, Robin Bangert has been moved by music most of the waking hours of her life. Originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Robin left home at 15 to pursue professional ballet training, first at Harid Conservatory in Florida, then the North Carolina School of the Arts and The Houston Ballet Academy, before joining Texas Ballet Theater (TBT) in 2004. During her career in ballet, in the corps and then as a soloist, Ms. Bangert had the opportunity to dance a wide range of repertory from the great classics such as Artistic Director Ben Stevenson’s Swan Lake to ultra-contemporary works.

Ms. Bangert loves the collaborative conversation between dancer, choreographer, conductor, and orchestra and the laser focus and care it takes to bring them together. She remains in awe of music’s ability to transform a mood or to inspire movement. Dancing to live music, both in the studio and onstage with the Fort Worth and Dallas Symphony Orchestras, was a joy she never took for granted. Some of her favorite roles include Ingrid in Stevenson’s Peer Gynt (Edvard Grieg), Russian Girls and Dark Angel in George Balanchine’s Serenade (Tchaikovsky), Christopher Wheeldon’s DGV: Danse à Grande Vitesse (Michael Nyman), and an original role in Jonathan Watkin’s Crash (Ryan Cockerham). She delighted in teaching adults and children in Dallas-Fort Worth, and back on Cape Cod during each summer season break.

Ms. Bangert retired from Texas Ballet Theater in 2018. She is honored to join the Cliburn in the Classroom team and appreciates the opportunity to share her enthusiasm for music and movement with kids across DFW!

Lauren Koszyk

Lauren Koszyk

Lauren Koszyk maintains a versatile career as an educator, opera coach, and collaborative pianist in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. A graduate of the University of North Texas, she earned her Master of Music in Collaborative Piano with a related field in Early Music; she also holds a degree in German Language. Ms. Koszyk has been presented with top honors by the Governor of Illinois and the President of Illinois State University.

A passionate and dedicated educator, she currently serves as piano faculty at Tarrant County College Northwest, maintains a private piano studio in the Dallas area, and is an active member of the Dallas Music Teachers Association, where she serves as treasurer. Her students have been accepted into top music schools and summer festivals across the country. She is honored to work for leading arts organizations including the Frances Clark Center for Keyboard Pedagogy and, of course, Cliburn in the Classroom!

Chloé Trevor

Chloé Trevor

Quickly becoming one of the most talked about and sought-after musical ambassadors to Generation Z, violinist Chloé Trevor has combined her spirit for classical music and her passion for mentoring the youth of today to connect on a personal level with audiences in exciting and innovative ways. She is acclaimed for her “dazzling technique,” “excellent musicianship,” and “bold personality unafraid to exult in music and ability.” Ms. Trevor has appeared as a soloist with orchestras worldwide, including the Dallas and Houston Symphonies here in Texas. She made her New York concerto debut in 2013, and Avery Fisher Hall debut in 2014.

Dedicated to music education and outreach, Chloé regularly connects with students and teachers through interactive performances, masterclasses, and lectures, both in person and online. She enjoys spreading her message of positivity and encouragement to tens of thousands of young people through an extensive and ever-growing social media following. Summer 2018 marked the inaugural year of the Chloé Trevor Music Academy, an intensive two-week program for string players and pianists offering one-on-one instruction, chamber music coaching, masterclasses, orchestral training, and career guidance by the world’s premier soloists, teachers, and conductors. She makes her debut as a Cliburn in the Classroom host this year.

Adriana Morales

Adriana Morales

Adriana Morales grew up in Colombia, where she studied piano from early childhood through high school. A scholarship to Texas Christian University brought her to the United States, where she earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in piano pedagogy (teaching). During her studies, Ms. Morales developed an interest in jazz and joined the Curt Wilson Big Band. She also won the Young Artist Performing Series Competition in her hometown and performed in one of Colombia’s finest concert halls, the Library Hall Luis Angel Arango.

Prized as a pedagogue, Adriana teaches dozens of young pianists at the Coppell Conservatory, where her students frequently take home top prizes in area festivals and competitions. Active in her local community, she is also the music director at Silver Creek United Methodist Church in Azle and served as the vice president of Carrolton Music Teachers Association. Her lecture recitals have highlighted the intersection of language, culture, and music in Texas and abroad; topics have included Music and Language Intertwined, Latin American Art Song, and Viviendo la Música. She is excited to join Cliburn in the Classroom as a host for the first time in the 2022–2023 school year!

Spencer Myer

SPENCER MYER – UNITED STATES

Lauded for “superb playing” and “poised, alert musicianship” by the Boston Globe, and labeled “definitely a man to watch” by London’s The Independent after his 2012 Wigmore Hall recital debut, American pianist SPENCER MYER is one of the most respected and sought-after artists on today’s concert stage.

He has been soloist with The Cleveland Orchestra, the Cape Town and Johannesburg Philharmonics, the Indianapolis, New Haven and Phoenix Symphony Orchestras and Beijing’s China National Symphony, collaborating with conductors Yannick Nézét-Séguin, Michael Christie, Arthur Fagen Bernhard Gueller, Jahja Ling, Kevin Rhodes, Gerald Steichen, Thomas Wilkins and Victor Yampolsky. His 2005 tour of South Africa included a performance of Beethoven’s five piano concerti with the Chamber Orchestra of South Africa, followed by six subsequent return tours.  An in-demand chamber musician, he has appeared at the Lev Aronson Legacy Festival with cellists Lynn Harrell, Brian Thornton, Ralph Kirshbaum and Amit Peled, and enjoys a recurring partnership with the Miami String Quartet at the Kent/Blossom Music Festival.  Other artistic partners have included clarinetist David Shifrin, soprano Nicole Cabell, and the Jupiter and Pacifica String Quartets.

Spencer Myer’s career was launched with three important prizes: First Prize in the 2004 UNISA International Piano Competition in South Africa, the 2006 Christel DeHaan Classical Fellowship from the American Pianists Association and the Gold Medal from the 2008 New Orleans International Piano Competition. He was a member of Astral Artists’ performance roster from 2003-2010.

Spencer Myer served on the piano faculty of Boston’s Longy School of Music of Bard College from 2016 to 2022, and is currently Associate Professor of Piano at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.  He has released four CDs on the Steinway & Sons label — Piano Rags of William Bolcom, and three discs with cellist Brian Thornton encompassing repertoire of Brahms, Debussy and Schumann.

Spencer Myer is a Steinway Artist.

www.spencermyer.com


AMATEUR COMPETITION LINKS
2022 AMATEUR COMPETITION   I  JURY   I   ARTISTIC COLLABORATORS  I  AMATEUR HISTORY

Xiaolu Zang

Xiaolu Zang

China  I  Age 22

Born in Qinhuangdao, Xiaolu Zang was 4 years old when an electric keyboard caught his attention. He eventually attended the Beijing Central Music Conservatory Middle School for seven years under Professor Ye Lin and won first prizes in several major Chinese competitions. It was during that time, at the age of 15, that he recalls a singular day when he determined himself to become a professional musician. That commitment took him to Germany in 2017, where he studies with Arie Vardi at Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover.

Xiaolu has done well at international contests, including winning first prize at the Verona and Mayenne (France) Competitions, and strong showings at the Busoni, Leeds, Queen Elisabeth, and Hamamatsu Competitions. He performed numerous concerts in China, Germany, Japan, Austria, France, Italy, Belgium, Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Dubai. His strong interest in collaboration led to his work with the Staatsballett Hannover in 2020, playing both of Chopin’s piano concertos with the Staatsorchester Hannover in its special production about the life of choreographer Nijinsky.

Growing up in China and living five years in Europe now, Xiaolu visited the United States three times prior to the Cliburn and is looking forward to more time here. He finds experiencing different cultures to be key to artistic development, noting: “The essence of all kinds of music is to move people, to let one think, to mark the victory of humanity. The way we achieve it should not be the same, just like what Feruccio Busoni said, ‘Music is born free.’”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

SCHUMANN Humoreske in B-flat Major, op. 20
SCRIABIN Sonata No. 4 in F-sharp Major, op. 30
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata

Quarterfinal Round

SCHUBERT Sonata in C Minor, D. 958
RAVEL La valse

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 28 in A Major, op. 101
SCHUBERT Impromptu in C Minor, D. 899, no. 1
JANÁČEK Sonata 1.X.1905 (“From the Street”)
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, op. 83

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 16


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Yuki Yoshimi

Yuki Yoshimi

Japan  I  Age 22

Tokyo-born Yuki Yoshimi did not decide to pursue music professionally; he first “met the piano” at a friend’s house when he was 5 years old and has “loved the piano since then.” A graduate of the Toho Gakuen School of Music, where he worked with Hisako Ueno and Kei Itoh, his studies eventually brought him to the United States; he has attended the New England Conservatory of Music under Alexander Korsantia since 2020.

Yuki won the first prize in the 86th Music Competition of Japan, becoming the youngest winner at the age of 17. Two years later, he won silver at the Manhattan International Music Competition and just last year made the semifinals of the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition.

He has given recitals throughout Japan, including at Hamarikyu Asahi Hall and Toppan Hall. In addition, he was selected as a Chanel Pygmalion Days artist in 2019 and gave six recitals at Nexus Hall. He has performed with the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, and New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra. In December 2020, he substituted for Michel Dalberto at Suntory Hall, performing the Mozart Concerto No. 17 in G Major, K. 453 with the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra—a concert he calls “the most enjoyable performance I have ever had.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
LISZT Sonata in B Minor

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Sonata in D Major, K. 311
BRAHMS Variations on a Theme by Paganini, Books I and II

Semifinal Round – Recital

DEBUSSY Preludes, Book II
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Minor, op. 83

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, op. 26


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Sergey Tanin

Sergey Tanin

Russia  I  Age 26

Sergey Tanin started piano lessons when he was 5 years old, and—though his parents were not musicians and never pushed him to practice—his commitment to the instrument grew quickly. By age 9, he had decided to be a pianist. Growing up in Yakutia in far Eastern Russia, a long way from major cities and the concerts they might offer, he drew inspiration from recordings by great artists, such as Argerich, Pletnev, Michelangeli, and Rubinstein. He was “taken by the power of music.”

He first gained international recognition in 2018 at the Géza Anda Competition in Switzerland (third prize and audience award), which he followed in 2020 by winning the Kissinger KlavierOlymp in Germany. After graduating in 2019 from the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, where he studied with Irina Plotnikova, he moved to Switzerland to attend the Basel Musik Academie under the tutelage of Claudio Martinez-Mehner. He holds the Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship, and, in 2020, the Swiss Television (SRF) released a documentary about him, entitled The Pianist Who Came in from the Cold.

As a soloist, he has performed with leading symphony orchestras, including the Tonhalle-Orchestra Zürich, Musikkollegium Winterthur, National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, Bremen Philharmonic, Mariinsky Symphony Orchestra, Prague Philharmonic, and Vogtland Philharmony. He has performed in recital in Czechia, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain, Finland, France, Switzerland, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine. His debut CD, released in 2021 on the Prospero Classical label, was nominated for an International Classical Music Award.

His most vivid concert memory came in May 2020, during lockdown, when he was asked to perform a livestreamed concert at the famous Hotel Storchen Zurich. They lifted a Steinway by crane to the rooftop, where Sergey played with a view of the mountains, lakes, and people below. “I was so happy at that moment,” he said, “especially when I heard the applause from the streets.”

sergeytanin.com


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

CPE BACH Sonata in F-sharp Minor, H. 37
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
LISZT “Sposalizio” from Années de pèlerinage
LISZT “Les jeux d’eaux à la Villa d’Este” from Années de pèlerinage
MESSIAEN “Regard de l’Esprit de joie” from Vingt Regards sur l’enfant-Jésus

Quarterfinal Round

MOZART Fantasia in C Minor, K. 396
BRAHMS Sonata No. 1 in C Major, op. 1

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUBERT Sonata in C Minor, D. 958
SCHUBERT–LISZT “Sei mir gegrüsst”
PROKOFIEV Ten Pieces, op. 12

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major, op. 58

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, op. 26


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Marcel Tadokoro

Marcel Tadokoro

France/Japan  I  Age 28

Marcel Tadokoro was born in Fukuoka, Japan, into a “literary family:” neither his French mother nor Japanese father are musicians. But he studied piano and had the opportunity to give a small public concert when he was 8; he says that was the moment he “immediately understood this would be my life.”

After graduating from high school in Nagoya, he moved to Paris at the age of 18 to pursue his dream. He earned his artist diploma from the Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional de Paris with Olivier Gardon (2013), and his master’s degree from the Conservatoire National Supérieure de Paris under the guidance of Jean-François Heisser and Florent Boffard (2017). It was when he met Rena Shereshevskaya eight years ago, with whom he currently studies at the École Normale de Musique de Paris “Alfred Cortot” as a scholarship student, that he has focused on major competitions and performance opportunities.

Marcel is a prizewinner of competitions in France, Russia, Germany, Panama, Austria, and Japan, and last year made strong appearances in both the Queen Elisabeth (semifinalist) and Montreal (finalist) Competitions. His orchestral debut took place in Nagoya, Japan, in 2010, where he performed with the Chamber Music Ensemble of the Central Aichi Symphony Orchestra during a concert in honor of the 200th anniversary of Chopin’s birth. He made his formal recital debut four years later in Nice, France. He has since performed with the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, National Philharmonic of Ukraine, and the Ural Philharmonic Orchestra, and makes frequent recital appearances across France and in Belgium.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
RAMEAU “Musette en rondeau” from Suite in E Minor, RCT 2
BEETHOVEN Six Variations on an Original Theme in F Major, op. 34
LISZT Transcendental Etude No. 5 “Feux follets”
STRAVINSKY Trois mouvements de Pétrouchka

Quarterfinal Round

COUPERIN La visionnaire
SZYMANOWSKI Variations in B-flat Minor, op. 3
RAVEL Gaspard de la nuit

Semifinal Round – Recital

RAMEAU “Le Rappel des Oiseaux” from Suite in E Minor, RCT 2
SCRIABIN Three Etudes, op. 65
RACHMANINOV Variations on a Theme of Corelli, op. 42
DEBUSSY Nocturne
BRAHMS Variations on a Theme by Paganini, op. 35, Books I and II

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat Major, K. 595

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 1 in C Major, op. 15

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, op. 26


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Yutong Sun

Yutong Sun

China  I  Age 26

Yutong Sun, a native of Tianjin, China, is currently studying with Alexander Korsantia and Dang Thai Son at the New England Conservatory. He has gained international recognition by winning prizes at prestigious competitions, including placing in three in Spain: Santander (second), Canals (third), and Jaén (first). He returns to Fort Worth this year after competing in the 2017 Cliburn Competition.

Yutong’s formative studies began at the Central Conservatory of Music Middle School in Beijing under Hua Chang. He made his recital debut at age 10 in Beijing and his orchestra debut with the Orchestra of Granada in Spain at age 16. He has since made appearances in major venues around the world, such as the Salle Cortot in Paris, Palau de la Música in Barcelona, Jordan Hall in Boston, and Bolshoi Hall in St. Peterburg.

He has performed with the Quiroga Quartet and been soloist with major orchestras, including the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine; Symphony Orchestra of Galicia, City of Granada Orchestra, and RTVE Symphony Orchestra in Spain; St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra; and Phoenix and Fort Worth Symphony Orchestras.

In 2013, he released a recital recording as part of the Laureate Series on the Naxos label.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HANDEL Chaconne in G Major, HWV 435
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
LIGETI Etude No. 13 “L’escalier du diable”
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 31 in A-flat Major, op. 110

Quarterfinal Round

VINE Five Bagatelles
CHOPIN Fantasy in F Minor, op. 49
BACH–BUSONI Chaconne in D Minor, BWV 1004

Semifinal Round – Recital

ALBÉNIZ “Corpus Christi en Sevilla” from Iberia, Book I
CHOPIN Polonaise in F-sharp Minor, op. 44
LYATOSHYNSKY Prelude, op. 44, no. 4
LYATOSHYNSKY Prelude, op. 38, no. 3
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 8 in B-flat Major, op. 84

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat Major, op. 73

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, op. 26


CLIBURN COMPETITION LINKS

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Clayton Stephenson

Clayton Stephenson

United States  I  Age 23

Growing up in New York City, Clayton Stephenson found musical inspiration in community programs. As he describes it, the “3rd Street Music School jump-started my music education; the Young People’s Choir taught me phrasing and voicing; the Juilliard Outreach Music Advancement Program introduced me to formal and rigorous piano training, which enabled me to get into Juilliard Pre-College; the Morningside Music Bridge validated my talent and elevated my self-confidence; and the Boy’s Club of New York exposed me to jazz; and the Lang Lang Foundation brought me to stages worldwide and transformed me from a piano student to a young artist.”

Clayton now studies in the Harvard-NEC Dual Degree Program, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in economics at Harvard and a master’s degree in piano performance at the New England Conservatory under Wha Kyung Byun. And his accolades along the way have been bountiful: 2022 Gilmore Young Artist; 2017 U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts; Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award; Gheens Young Artist; Young Scholar of the Lang Lang International Music Foundation; and a jury discretionary award at the 2015 Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition and Festival.

Highlights of Clayton’s burgeoning career include recitals at Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris, Kissinger Sommer Festival in Bad Kissinger, BeethovenFest in Bonn, Stars and Rising Stars in Munich, Swiss Alps Classics at Switzerland, and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. He has been featured on NPR, WUOL, and WQXR, and appeared in the “GRAMMY® Salute to Classical Music” Concert at Carnegie’s Stern Auditorium.

He has performed as a guest artist with orchestras including the Calgary Philharmonic, Chicago Sinfonietta, Louisville Symphony, Augusta Symphony, Colour of Music Festival, and Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestras. On the 69th U.N. Day, Clayton played with the International Youth Orchestra at the United Nations General Assembly Hall.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HAYDN Sonata in D Major, Hob. XVI:37
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
STRAVINSKY–AGOSTI Suite from The Firebird
STRAUSS–GODOWSKY Symphonic Metamorphosis on Die Fledermaus

Quarterfinal Round

RAVEL “Prélude” from Le tombeau de Couperin
LISZT Ballade No. 2 in B Minor
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, op. 83

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 21 in C Major, op. 53 (“Waldstein”)
LIEBERMANN Gargoyles, op. 29
BRAHMS Sonata No. 1 in C Major, op. 1

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, K. 467

Final Round – Concerto I

GERSHWIN Piano Concerto in F Major

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Vitaly Starikov

Vitaly Starikov

Russia  I  Age 27

After Vitaly Starikov completed his studies at the Ural Special Music School in his native Yekaterinburg, his “dream came true” when he began studying with Vera Gornostayeva, one of the world’s most venerated teachers, at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. At that time, her student, Vadym Kholodenko, had just won the 2013 Cliburn Competition, which “greatly inspired” Vitaly: “and it was then that the thought was born to someday participate in this competition.”

He went on to earn his bachelor’s degree at the Conservatory and is now completing his master’s degree, under the tutelage of Eliso Virsaladze. He also credits his studies with Boris Petrushansky at the Accademia Internazionale di Imola “Incontri col Maestro” in Italy and masterclasses with Dmitry Bashkirov and Dmitry Alexeev for his musical development.

Vitaly’s journey in music started when his parents enrolled him in a children’s music group at age 3, and he went on to a school for talented children at 7. He made his concerto debut at age 10 with the Ural State Russian Folk Orchestra, and his recital debut three years later, in the small hall of the Ural Special Music School. It was at 14 that he committed his life to music, and has since performed with the Antwerp and Belgian National Orchestras, Belarusian State Symphony Orchestra, and St. Petersburg Symphony, and toured with the Orchestre national de Metz. Recital and chamber music appearances have taken him around the world, notably to Austria, Slovakia, Israel, Cyprus, Italy, France, Belgium, and Malaysia. He has won top prizes at nine international competitions, including a recent finals appearance in the 2021 Queen Elisabeth (fifth prize).


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
DEBUSSY Estampes
WAGNER–LISZT Overture to Tannhäuser

Quarterfinal Round

BACH Fantasia and Fugue in A Minor, BWV 904
LISZT “Die Loreley”
BRAHMS Sonata No. 2 in F-sharp Minor, op. 2

Semifinal Round – Recital

CHOPIN Nocturne in C Minor, op. 48, no. 1
CHOPIN Scherzo No. 4 in E Major, op. 54
SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13
SCHUBERT–LISZT “Du bist die Ruh”
SHOSTAKOVICH Sonata No. 1, op. 12

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488

Final Round – Concerto I

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Ilya Shmukler

Ilya Shmukler

Russia  I  Age 27

When he was 3 years old, Moscow native Ilya Shmukler’s mother found him jumping on the bed and beautifully singing Robertino Loreti’s “Jamaica;” she immediately recognized his musical talent and started him in lessons. It was important to his non-musician parents that he be raised as a well-rounded person, so his early years were also spent with school, table tennis, and ballroom dancing. But at 10, he says his life changed after applying for and winning his first music competition and attending the subsequent international summer academy: “There I discovered a true musical life, and I fell in love with it, inspiring me to commit my life to music.”

He performed his first recital at age 12, and made his orchestral debut at 14. He has since made solo appearances in Europe and North America, and has performed with the Mariinsky Theatre, Sendai Philharmonic, Bayer Symphoniker, Tambov Symphonic, and New Music Orchestras, among others.

Ilya is a laureate of many international piano competitions, taking top prizes at the New York Virtuoso, Lewisville Lake Symphony, Artist Presentation Society (St. Louis), Shigeru Kawai (Tokyo), Sсriabin–Rachmaninov (Bulgaria), and Rachmaninov (St. Petersburg) Competitions. He was also a competitor in the 2017 Cliburn Competition. In 2021, he won the Carnegie Weill Recital Hall Debut Audition and will make his New York debut at the venerated venue in December 2022.

He completed his master’s degree with honors at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory in 2021, under the guidance of Elena Kuznetsova and Sergey Kuznetsov. Presently, he studies with 2001 Cliburn Gold Medalist Stanislav Ioudenitch at the International Center for Music at Park University in Parkville, Missouri.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

BACH–BUSONI Toccata, Adagio and Fugue in C Major, BWV 564
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
STRAVINSKY Trois mouvements de Pétrouchka

Quarterfinal Round

MEDTNER Sonata reminiscenza, op. 38, no. 1
DEBUSSY Images, Book I
SCRIABIN Fantasy in B Minor, op. 28

Semifinal Round – Recital

BRAHMS Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, op. 24
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 8 in B-flat Major, op. 84

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

GRIEG Piano Concerto in A Minor, op. 16

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Changyong Shin

Changyong Shin

South Korea  I  Age 28

Anyang native Changyong Shin has garnered international attention with first-prize wins at the Gina Bachauer, Seoul, and Hilton Head International Piano Competitions. He has studied in the United States since 2016, earning a bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music and master’s degree and artist diploma from The Juilliard School under the guidance of Robert McDonald. He is currently studying with Wha Kyung Byun at New England Conservatory as an artist diploma student.

He has performed throughout Asia, North America, and Europe, including recitals at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel and Weill Recital Halls, WQXR’s The Greene Space, and Salle Cortot and the Louvre in Paris, as well as festival appearances for the Barletta Piano Festival (Italy), Klavier-Festival Ruhr (Germany), and Newport and Green Lake Festivals in the United States. Concerto appearances include those with the Utah Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, KBS Symphony, Sendai Philharmonic, and Hilton Head Symphony Orchestras.

A rising star in his native country, recent highlights include a sold-out recital at Seoul Art Center’s IBK Chamber Hall, followed by a sold-out recital tour, and multiple performances as part of Lotte Concert Hall’s highly selective “In-House Artist Series.” He was invited to give a special performance of a new work by Korean composer Young-jo Lee as a member of the Korea National Institute for the Gifted in Arts, and has performed at the Kumho Art Hall, Sejong Center for the Performing Arts, and other major venues.

Changyong has released three professional recordings; his debut CD was named one of the “Best New Recordings of 2018” by WQXR, and subsequent albums received rave reviews from ClassicsToday and Pizzicato. He has a passion for speaking to his audiences during concerts, to create a more meaningful connection between the music, artists, and attendees—to “share the music from heart to heart.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HAYDN Sonata in C Major, Hob. XVI:50
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
CHOPIN Nocturne in B Major, op. 62, no. 1
GRANADOS “Los requiebros” from Goyescas, op. 11

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 28 in A Major, op. 101
RACHMANINOV Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 36 (1931)

Semifinal Round – Recital

BACH Toccata in D Major, BWV 912
SCHUMANN Humoreske in B-flat Major, op. 20
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, op. 83

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 16


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Jinhyung Park

Jinhyung Park

South Korea  I  Age 26

Seoul native Jinhyung Park began studying piano at the age of 5 and made his recital debut 10 years later. After completing his bachelor’s degree in piano performance at Yonsei University under the tutelage of Ian Yungwook Yoo, he moved to Germany to study with Arie Vardi at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien in Hannover.

Jinhyung’s concert schedule has taken him around the world, with engagements across Korea, as well as recitals in Prague, Bratislava, and Paris, and concertos with the Slovakia Symphony Orchestra, RTVE Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Gyonggi Philharmonic Orchestra, Gwacheon Philharmonic Orchestra, KBS Symphony Orchestra, Bucheon Philharmonic Orchestra, and Incheon Philharmonic Orchestra. He is also the proud recipient of a Yamaha Music Korea scholarship and the Shinhan Music Award.

His international prizes include first place at the Prague Spring International Music Competition and second prizes at the Panama and Hilton Head International Piano Competitions; he also boasts strong finishes at the Cleveland, Santander, and Montreal Competitions.

Also interested in conducting and composing, Jinhyung cites his deep love of music as his primary motivator in life. He expects the Cliburn to be “an unforgettable experience for an optimistic future.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
DEBUSSY Images, Book I
LISZT Venezia e Napoli

Quarterfinal Round

MENDELSSOHN Prelude and Fugue in E Minor, op. 35, no. 1
BRAHMS Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, op. 24

Semifinal Round – Recital

PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 6 in A Minor, op. 82
SCHUMANN Fantasiestücke, op. 12

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major, op. 58

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, op. 26


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Georgijs Osokins

Georgijs Osokins

Latvia  I  Age 27

Born into a family of pianists in Riga, Latvia, Georgijs Osokins began his studies at the age of 5 with his father, Sergejs Osokins. After 12 years at the Emīls Dārziņš Music School, he studied with Sergei Babayan at The Juilliard School in 2015, then moved to Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf to study with Georg Friedrich Schenck. He finds “consistent development” to be the hallmark of a great musician: “only when an artist fully embraces his responsibility of being the linking element between the creator and the recipient, can he start to generate art himself.”

Georgijs has performed around the world, with numerous orchestras including Taiwan Philharmonic, Kremerata Baltica, Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and Tokyo New City Orchestra. Recitals have taken him across Asia, North America, and Europe, with notable appearances at the Elbphilharmonie, Klavier-Festival Ruhr, Lockenhaus Festival, International Piano Series in Bern/Fribourg, Salzburg Festival, Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre Hall, Tongyeong Hall in South Korea, Berlin Konzerthaus, and Muziekgebouw in Amsterdam. He often tours with Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer.

A finalist of the 2015 Chopin and 2019 Busoni Competitions, Georgijs won first prizes at the International Moscow F. Chopin, Scriabin International Competition in Paris, and Manhattan International Music Competition. He has released four commercial recordings to date, with rave reviews from Gramophone, Danish Radio, Pizzicato, and France Musique.

georgijsosokins.com


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

SCRIABIN Sonata No. 9, op. 68 (“Black Mass”)
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
CHOPIN Sonata No. 3 in B Minor, op. 58

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 31 in A-flat Major, op. 110
CHOPIN Variations in A Major, B. 37 “Souvenir de Paganini”
LISZT Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata

Semifinal Round – Recital

BACH–BUSONI Adagio in A Minor, BWV 564
MOZART Sonata No. 9 in D Major, K. 311
TAKEMITSU Rain Tree Sketch II
CHOPIN 12 Etudes, op. 25

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 25 in C Major, K. 503

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major, op. 58

Final Round – Concerto II

TCHAIKOVSKY Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat Minor, op. 23


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Jonathan Mak

Jonathan Mak

Canada  I  Age 25

On Jonathan Mak’s third birthday, his sister’s piano teacher decided to give him a trial lesson; he has been actively studying both piano and viola ever since. He made his orchestra debut with the Canadian Sinfonietta just one year later, at the age of 4.

After graduation from the Cardinal Carter Academy for the Arts in his native Toronto, he went on to study with Daniel Shapiro at the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in piano performance, as well as minors in viola performance and German. Under the tutelage of Boris Slutsky, he recently completed his master’s degree in piano performance at the Yale School of Music, where he is currently pursuing a Master of Musical Arts degree. In fall 2022, he will begin doctoral studies at Rice University with Jon Kimura Parker.

Jonathan’s international accomplishments include first prize at the 2009 Manchester International Concerto Competition for Young Pianists; the 2013 Jean Lumb Foundation Kotcheff Family Arts Award; and the 2021 Sylva Gelber Music Foundation Award. He has been a guest soloist with numerous orchestras, most notably the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra in Bulgaria, Manchester Camerata, Orchestra Filarmonica di Udine, and Krakow Philharmonic Orchestra, and has also given recitals in Italy, Bulgaria, Manchester, China, Vienna, and Poland.

An avid chamber musician, he has been invited to perform at various festivals including the Festival of the Sound in Ontario, Ottawa Chamberfest, and the Edinburgh International Festival. In the summer of 2017, Jonathan was part of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada as an Award of Excellence winner. Returning to the orchestra in 2018, he joined NYOC on their European tour as a recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts Michael Measures Prize.

jonathanmakpiano.weebly.com


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HAYDN Sonata in A-flat Major, Hob. XVI:46
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
RACHMANINOV Variations on a Theme of Corelli, op. 42

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 18 in E-flat Major, op. 31, no. 3
RAVEL Gaspard de la nuit

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUMANN Humoreske in B-flat Major, op. 20
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 8 in B-flat Major, op. 84

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488

Final Round – Concerto I

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

Final Round – Concerto II

BRAHMS Piano Concerto No. 1 in D Minor, op. 15


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Ziyu Liu

Ziyu Liu

China  I  Age 24

When he was a child, Ziyu Liu’s parents discovered that he could memorize melodies of songs and play them, without any instruction, on their electric keyboard. They bought him a piano, and he started learning on his own. At the age of 11, he decided that he wanted to become a professional pianist because of the joy he got from communicating with others through music.

He entered the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing at the age of 12 and—feeling he started later than his contemporaries—studied intensively. He moved to Germany in 2015 to study with Ewa Kupiec at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover, where he remains today under the tutelage of Arie Vardi. In 2019, he went to three competitions (Viotti, Singapore, Cantù) and took home top prizes at each of them.

Ziyu has performed in many countries, including Austria, Sweden, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Netherlands, China, and Singapore; in concert venues such as the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, Warsaw Philharmonie, National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, Weimarhalle, Sota Concert Hall in Singapore, and Shanghai Concert Hall; and at the Kissinger Sommer, Weimar Music, and Coburg Music Festivals.

The Jinan, China, native also enjoys giving lectures on composers, sharing his passion for understanding “the story behind the notes.” He calls participation in the Cliburn his dream since childhood: “I want to bring love, friendship to people through this wonderful platform in this difficult time.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

SCHUBERT Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946
BARTÓK Sonata, Sz. 80
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata

Quarterfinal Round

SCHUMANN Humoreske in B-flat Major, op. 20
RAVEL La valse

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUBERT Impromptu in F Minor, D. 935, no. 1
MUSSORGSKY Pictures at an Exhibition
GINASTERA Sonata No. 1, op. 22

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major, op. 58

Final Round – Concerto II

TCHAIKOVSKY Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat Minor, op. 23


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Kate Liu

Kate Liu

United States  I  Age 28

Born in Singapore, Kate Liu began playing the piano when she was 4 years old and moved to the United States when she was 8, where she studied at the Music Institute of Chicago. She made her orchestral debut in 2010, at age 16, with the Cleveland Orchestra, and a New York recital debut a year later. In 2015, she burst onto the international scene after winning the bronze medal and audience prize at the International Fryderyk Chopin Competition in Warsaw; her debut album was then released on the Institute’s label.

She maintains an active performance schedule in North America, Europe, and Asia, highlighted by performances at the Seoul Arts Center, Shanghai Concert Hall, Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, The Kennedy Center and Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., and Warsaw Philharmonic Hall. Orchestral collaborations include those with the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Polish Radio Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Daegu Symphony Orchestra, and Rochester Philharmonic.

Early on in her career, she won first prizes at the Asia-Pacific International Chopin and New York International Piano Competitions. She received a bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, and a master’s degree and artist diploma from The Juilliard School under the tutelage of Robert McDonald and Yoheved Kaplinsky.

kateliu.com


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

SCHUBERT Allegretto in C Minor, D. 915
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 8 in B-flat Major, op. 84

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 31 in A-flat Major, op. 110
FRANCK Prélude, Choral et Fugue

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUMANN Arabeske in C Major, op. 18
BRAHMS Sonata No. 3 in F Minor, op. 5

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 2 in F Minor, op. 21

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 16


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Denis Linnik

Denis Linnik

Belarus  I  Age 26

Denis Linnik began his musical education in his hometown of Maryina Horka, Belarus, when he was 6. Just two years later, he moved to Minsk to study piano and live with other talented young musicians—he says being constantly surrounded by music made it a truly inseparable part of his life. His musical development advanced quickly over the next years, leading him to success in youth competitions and successful stints at the State Gymnasium-College of Arts “I.O. Akhremchik” and the Belarusian State Academy of Music.

He moved to Switzerland in 2017, where he currently studies at the Hochschule für Musik in Basel with Claudio Martinez Mehner and Zoltán Fejérvári. He has won awards at several major piano international competitions, such as the Città di Cantù International Piano and Orchestra Competition, International Horowitz Competition, and Orpheus Chamber Music Competition. His debut CD was released by the KNS Classical label in 2022.

His concert activity as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber collaborator has led him across Europe, where he performed at prestigious festivals, including the Gstaad Menuhin, Wien Modern, ArtDialog, 100% Classique, and SOLSberg Festivals. Aside from the standard piano repertoire, he enjoys exploring the fields of historical performance, contemporary music, and jazz. In 2021, he took part in several jazz projects, as well as two operas by contemporary American composers Du Yun and Michael Hersch.

He sees his participation in the Cliburn as a “singular opportunity to try myself on the highest level and to compete with the best musicians of my generation.” More than that, though, he says: “For several reasons since my very childhood, I was imagining myself playing in this particular competition and had a feeling that it could be a life-changing event for me as a musician.”

denislinnik.com


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

RAMEAU “L’Entretien des Muses,” “Les tourbillons,” and “La joyeuse” from Suite in D Major, RCT 3
KARAMANOV Variations for Piano
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
RACHMANINOV Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 36 (1931)

Quarterfinal Round

SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13
SCRIABIN Sonata No. 5, op. 53
LIGETI Etude No. 13 “L’escalier du diable”

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 30 in E Major, op. 109
MEDTNER Sonata in E Minor, op. 25, no. 2 “Night Wind”
BRAHMS Intermezzo in A Major, op. 118, no. 2

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat Major, K. 595

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 2 in F Minor, op. 21

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 16


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Yunchan Lim

Yunchan Lim, 2022 Cliburn Gold Medalist

South Korea  I  Age 18

Yunchan Lim launched onto the international music stage when he was 14. He won second prize and the Chopin Special Award in his first-ever competition, the Cleveland International Piano Competition for Young Artists in 2018. That same year, he stood out as the youngest participant in the Cooper International Competition, where he won the third prize and the audience prize, which provided the opportunity for him to perform with the Cleveland Orchestra. 2019 meant more accolades, when, at the age of 15, he was the youngest to win Korea’s IsangYun International Competition, where he also took home two special prizes.
 
Now just 18, he has performed across South Korea—including with the Korean Orchestra Festival, Korea Symphony, Suwon Philharmonic, and Busan Philharmonic Orchestras, among others—as well as in Madrid, at the invitation of the Korea Cultural Center in Spain. He also participated in the recording of “2020 Young Musicians of Korea,” organized by the Korean Broadcasting System and released that November. 
 
A native of Siheung, Yunchan currently studies at the Korea National University of Arts under Minsoo Sohn. Coming to Fort Worth, he says he is “looking forward to playing in front of the warmest and most passionate audience in the world.” 


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
COUPERIN “La Couperin” from Pièces de clavecin, Book IV, order 21
MOZART Sonata No. 9 in D Major, K. 311
CHOPIN Variations on “Là ci darem la mano,” op. 2

Quarterfinal Round

BACH “Ricercar a 3” from The Musical Offering, BWV 1079
SCRIABIN Sonata No. 2 in G-sharp Minor, op. 19 (“Sonata-Fantasy”)
BEETHOVEN Variations and Fugue in E-flat Major, op. 35 (“Eroica”)

Semifinal Round – Recital

LISZT 12 Transcendental Etudes

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 22 in E-flat Major, K. 482

Final Round – Concerto I

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

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Andrew Li

Andrew Li

United States  I  Age 22

Andrew Li credits his time in the Harvard University/New England Conservatory of Music joint program with substantially aiding in his development as a musician and a human being. He is currently finishing a bachelor’s degree in human evolutionary biology and a master’s in piano performance, the latter under the guidance of Wha Kyung Byun, with whom he has studied since the age of 12.

He is a winner of the Boston Symphony Orchestra Youth Concerto Competition and the Harvard Music Association Achievement Awards, as well as a prizewinner at numerous international competitions, such as the Cooper International Piano Competition, Hilton Head International Piano Competition, and Minnesota International Piano-e-Competition.

Andrew has previously performed with the Boston, Boston Civic, Minnesota, Hilton Head, Pro Musica, Glens Falls, Lexington, and NEC Youth Symphony Orchestras, and has appeared in venues such as Boston’s Symphony and Jordan Halls, Minneapolis’ Orchestra Hall, Vancouver Playhouse, Warner Concert Hall, and Shalin Liu Performance Center. He has been featured on NPR’s From the Top, both as soloist and with his trio.

He was exposed to music from a very early age, primarily from listening to his older brother George practice in their Lexington, Massachusetts, home. Andrew started piano lessons at the age of 6 with Dorothy Shi, emboldened by the challenge of beating his brother. However, his competitiveness quickly gave way to a profound love of music, relishing in finding deeper meanings and hidden gems within. Competing in the Cliburn is one of his childhood dreams: he remembers repeatedly watching the 2001 Cliburn documentary as a toddler, cheering on Olga Kern and Stanislav Ioudenitch, and waving a chopstick to emulate James Conlon.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HAYDN Sonata in D Major, Hob. XVI:42
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
STRAVINSKY Trois mouvements de Pétrouchka
LISZT Hungarian Rhapsody No. 6

Quarterfinal Round

BEETHOVEN Six Variations on an Original Theme in F Major, op. 34
BRAHMS Variations on a Theme by Paganini, Books I and II

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 4 in E-flat Major, op. 7
PROKOFIEV Sarcasms, op. 17
RACHMANINOV Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 36 (1931)

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

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

Final Round – Concerto II

TCHAIKOVSKY Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat Minor, op. 23


 

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Shuan Hern Lee

Shuan Hern Lee

Australia  I  Age 19

Born in Perth, Australia, Shuan Hern Lee started taking piano, vocal, music theory, and composition lessons with his father, Yoon Sen Lee, when he was 2½ years old. His childhood home was filled with music at all hours of the day, as both parents taught piano.

Among his many accolades are 14 international first prizes at piano competitions in Ukraine, Serbia, Netherlands, Germany, China, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Italy, France, and United States—including the 2019 Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition and Festival, where he became the first Australian ever to win a Cliburn competition.

Shuan Hern performed at Carnegie Hall at the age of 7, and has since concertized around the world, including with the Kazakhstan Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Symphonic Orchestra of Ukraine, Vienna Pops Orchestra, Perth Symphony Orchestra, Armenia State Philharmonic Orchestra, Novosibirsk Philharmonic Orchestra, Imola Chamber Orchestra, and West Australian Symphony Orchestra.

He has made a number of major media appearances, including Australia’s Got Talent, New York’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Observance in 2016, and other TV and radio programs in Australia, China, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine. Shuan Hern recently completed his bachelor’s degree at the University of Western Australia at the age of 18. He continues to study with Yoon Sen Lee and currently attends the Accademia Internazionale di Imola “Incontri col Maestro” under the tutelage of Ingrid Fliter.

shuanhernlee.net


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
HAYDN Sonata in E-flat Major, Hob. XVI:52
CHOPIN Barcarolle in F-sharp Major, op. 60
BALAKIREV Islamey: Oriental Fantasy

Quarterfinal Round

BACH Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D Minor, BWV 903
CHOPIN Ballade No. 4 in F Minor, op. 52
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, op. 83

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUMANN Sonata No. 2 in G Minor, op. 22
MUSSORGSKY Pictures at an Exhibition
PROKOFIEV Toccata in D Minor, op. 11

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat Major, op. 73

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Elizaveta Kliuchereva

Elizaveta Kliuchereva

Russia  I  Age 23

When she was 6, Elizaveta Kliuchereva—who was born in Moscow into a family of visual artists—was walking in the corridors of her art school and found a very old piano standing in the corner. She says: “From the moment I saw the piano and opened the keyboard, I realized that it is going to be my life, and I would not be able to live without music.”

She has since studied at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover, and the Accademia Internazionale di Imola “Incontri col Maestro” with Vladimir Ovchinnikov, Arie Vardi, and Boris Petrushansky, respectively. Elizaveta is a prizewinner of more than 30 international piano competitions in the United Kingdom, China, Kazakhstan, Italy, Estonia, Russia, and France, and was a semifinalist at last year’s Leeds Competition.

Among her performance highlights are the Ukrainian Kharkiv Philharmonic, Central Music School at the Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory, Hilton Head Symphony, National Philharmonic of Russia, St. Petersburg State Symphony, Prague Radio Symphony, Karaganda Symphony Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, and New Mexico Philharmonic. She now comes to the Cliburn to realize a “real dream—to play in this hall and on this stage, where many genius pianists have played before.”


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
FRANCK Prélude, Choral et Fugue
LISZT Rhapsodie espagnole

Quarterfinal Round

BACH–SILOTI Prelude in B Minor, BWV 855a
CHOPIN Polonaise-Fantaisie in A-flat Major, op. 61
DEBUSSY La plus que lente
DEBUSSY “Feux d’artifice” from Preludes, Book II
STRAUSS–GODOWSKY Symphonic Metamorphosis on Die Fledermaus

Semifinal Round – Recital

SCHUBERT Impromptus, D. 935, nos. 1 and 2
SCHUMANN Carnaval, op. 9
RACHMANINOV Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 36 (1931)

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, K. 467

Final Round – Concerto I

LISZT Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major, S. 124

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Honggi Kim

Honggi Kim

South Korea  I  Age 30

In Honggi Kim’s childhood home in Wonju, his sister played an electric keyboard; his parents then encouraged him to start learning the instrument after he played the same pieces she did, on his own, by ear. During his middle school years at art school in Seoul, he also studied composition, which he credits with deepening his understanding of music and its logic, so that he could develop his own interpretations.

He went on to graduate from the Seoul Arts High School and Korea National University of Arts; he has lived and studied in Germany since 2014, at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München and the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Frankfurt am Main, with Arnulf von Arnim and Antti Siirala.

Honggi has been awarded prizes at numerous international piano competitions, including Geneva, China International, Isang Yun (Korea), Jaén (Spain), and Géza Anda (Switzerland). He was a semifinalist in the 2017 Cliburn Competition and, in 2019, won the Hong Kong International Piano Competition.

He has given recitals in Switzerland, Italy, Germany, China, Singapore, Japan, and Korea; and performed with orchestras including Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Macau Orchestra, Changwon Symphony Orchestra, Wonju Symphony Orchestra, Münchner Kammerorchester, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, and Korean Symphony Orchestra.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

SCARLATTI Sonata in B Minor, K. 87
SCARLATTI Sonata in B Minor, K. 27
SCARLATTI Sonata in G Major, K. 13
SCARLATTI Sonata in G Major, K. 455
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
TCHAIKOVSKY–PLETNEV Suite from The Nutcracker

Quarterfinal Round

SCHUMANN Carnaval, op. 9
LISZT Hungarian Rhapsody No. 9 “Pesther Carneval”

Semifinal Round – Recital

RACHMANINOV Ten Preludes, op. 23
ADAMS China Gates
BARBER Sonata for Piano, op. 26

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466

Final Round – Concerto I

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 1 in C Major, op. 15

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, op. 30


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Uladzislau Khandohi

Uladzislau Khandohi

Belarus  |  Age 20

Uladzislau Khandohi was born in Minsk, Belarus, to a family of musicians—dulcimer players. When his parents noticed him picking out melodies on the piano at the age of 7, they took him to music school, where he progressed quickly; he won his first grand prix (at the Mendzelevskaya Open City Competition for young pianists in Mogilev) at age 10, and the first prize of the Sviridov Competition for Young Performers in St. Petersburg a year later.  

In 2013, he entered the Republican Music College of the Belarusian State Academy of Music, after which he became a laureate of many international competitions, including first-prize wins at Kazakhstan’s International Astana Piano Passion Competition; International Nutcracker Television Contest; and International Sviridov Competition. In 2016, he reached the finals of the Gina Bachauer International Junior Piano Competition in Salt Lake City and recorded his first solo album.

Now 20, Uladzislau has performed in Belarus, Russia, Spain, Italy, and France. He has studied with Natalia Trull at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory since 2020. He most recently won the 2021 editions of the Ferrol International Piano Competition in Spain and the Sanremo International Piano Competition in Italy.


REPERTOIRE

Preliminary Round

HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13
SCRIABIN Mazurka in E Minor, op. 25, no. 3
PROKOFIEV Four Etudes, op. 2

Quarterfinal Round

BACH Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D Minor, BWV 903
PROKOFIEV Sonata No. 6 in A Major, op. 82

Semifinal Round – Recital

RAVEL Gaspard de la nuit
RACHMANINOV Études-tableaux, op. 39, nos. 2, 3, 4
RACHMANINOV Variations on a Theme of Corelli, op. 42

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 9 in E-flat Major, K. 271

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor, op. 11

Final Round – Concerto II

RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, op. 18


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