International Piano-e-Competition
Alexander Braginsky
Alexander Braginsky (Nonvoting Chair) / United States
Introduced to the piano by his concert pianist mother, Moscow-born Alexander Braginsky began studying the piano at the age of four. His first teacher, Alexander Goldenweiser, a classmate of Rachmaninov and Scriabin, introduced Braginsky to the 19th century Romantic tradition. Braginsky also studied with Theodore Gutman, another illustrious representative of the Golden Age of Russian piano schools. Offering his audiences a repertoire that extends from Baroque to avant-garde, Braginsky has performed more than 20 world premiers, most of which were commissioned and written for him. Braginsky has performed extensively in USSR, Israel, England, Belgium, Italy, Germany, Taiwan, People’s Republic of China, Spain, France and the United States. He also appeared on stage in collaboration with the variety of renowned artists including Yefim Bronfman and Oleg Kagan. Together with his wife, cellist Tanya Remenikova, the couple was the first artists-in-residence appointed by Churchill College, Cambridge, in 1981. A Professor on the faculty of the International Music Summer Course in Vienna, Austria, Braginsky has given numerous master classes around the world. He was awarded the Josef Dichler Gold Medal for outstanding achievement in 2003. Today, Braginsky teaches at the University of Minnesota School of Music and is the Artistic Director of the Musicians in Debut International (MIDI) as well as the Founding President and the Artistic Director of the Minnesota International Piano-e-Competition.


David Dubal
David Dubal / United States
David Dubal is internationally known as a pianist, teacher, writer, and broadcaster. An acknowledged authority on the piano literature, Mr. Dubal’s books. The Art of the Piano, Evenings with Horowitz, Reflections from the Keyboard, and Conversations with Menuhin are highly acclaimed and have been translated into Chinese, Japanese, German, etc. He has also written numerous articles in journals, liner notes, and CD booklets for the Nimbus Grand Piano Series. He edited American Piano Music from the Civil War through World War I for International Music. David Dubal’s video, The Golden Age of the Piano has been seen worldwide on Philips Classics VCR and DVD in four languages and won him an Emmy award. He also presented a multi-media show on Horowitz for Steinway and Sons using Horowitz’s piano. Recipient of the first ASCAP Deems Taylor award for broadcast journalism, David Dubal has won numerous awards including the coveted George Foster Peabody award. He also received a proclamation from mayor Guiliani for his services to music in New York City. During 1999 he was heard every Sunday at WQXR as host of the program The American Century - a series devoted to American music. He was music and program director of the radio station WNCN (New York City) and was also producer and commentator of innumerable special broadcasts. Mr. Dubal has been on the faculty of the Juilliard School since 1983 and the Manhattan School of Music since 1995. At Juilliard, his series The World of the Piano is one of the most popular classes in the Evening Division. David Dubal has conducted master classes worldwide including: Seoul National University, the Berne Conservatory in Switzerland, and in Brazil and Israel. Mr. Dubal has judged many international competitions including a series of 6 lecture-recitals at the 1989, 1993, 1997 Van Cliburn competitions. The Dubal Collection of Interviews is at the University of Maryland. He is a Housewright Eminent Scholar at Florida State University. Currently Mr. Dubal is heard every Wednesday night at 10:00PM on WQXR in his program: Reflections From The Keyboard, The Piano in Comparative Performance. His new book, The Essential Canon of Classical Music was recently published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. In May, 2006, Mr. Dubal received an honorary Doctor of Music from the 64 colleges of The State University of New York.


Akiko Ebi
Akiko Ebi / Japan
A prolific recording artist and international performer, Akiko Ebi’s career was launched with she won the 1975 Grand Prix of the International Marguerite Long Competition in Paris. In 1980 she was a laureate of the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw. Ms. Ebi has performed around the world, and tours annually in her native Japan. Most recently she performed with L’Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, L’Orchestra Philharmonique de Radio France, the NHK Symphony and the Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra. Ms. Ebi has recorded Chopin’s complete Etudes, Preludes, Nocturnes and Impromptus, as well as the works of Brahms, Liszt, Franck, Webern and Pierne. She was awarded the French Grand Prix d’Or of her recording of the works of Dynam-Victor Fumet, and her second Grand Prix d’Or Japonais for her disk of the compositions of Hikari Oe. Regarded as one of the most important interpreters of French music among all Japanese pianists, Ms. Ebi was named Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government in 1993, and in 2002 received Japan’s prestigious Exxon-Mobile Music Prize.


Gabriel Kwok
Gabriel Kwok / Hong Kong, China
Gabriel Kwok was born in Hong Kong and studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Guy Jonson and, later on, with Louis Kentner. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in 2003. He has been Head of Keyboard Studies at The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts since 1989. Gabriel Kwok holds Visiting Professorship at the Shenzhen Arts School, Xian Conservatory of Music, Xinghai Conservatory of Music and has taught at the Cliburn Piano Institute in Fort Worth, the International Institute for Young Musicians in Kansas, Beijing International Music Festival and Academy in China and Tel-Hai International Piano Master Classes in Israel. He has also given many masterclasses in China, Taiwan, Singapore, Korea as well as cities in Britain, Germany, the Netherland, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. He has held classes at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music, Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Music, Hannover Hochschule für Musik und Theater, Rotterdam Conservatorium, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Eastman School of Music, Kansas University, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Texas Christian University, The Yale School of Music among others. He has been on the panel of judges of many international piano competitions, including the Rome International Piano Competition, the Vianna da Motta International Piano Competition, the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, the Hong Kong International Piano Competition and China International Piano Competition. Gabriel Kwok has collaborated with many distinguished artists in concerts, among whom were Pierre Amoyal, Alan Civil, Albert Markov, Yuri Mazurkevich, Roberta Peters, Jean-Pierre Rampal, Aaron Rosand, Nathaniel Rosen, Hansjoerg Schellenberger, Leon Spierer, Richard Stolzman and Wang Jian.


Nikolai Petrov
Nikolai Petrov / Russia
Nikolai Petrov, an outstanding musician of our time and a recipient of numerous titles and prizes, was born to a family of famous Moscow artists. His grandfather was the famous Russian singer, bass Vasilij Petrov. Nikolai Petrov was educated in the best Russian musical traditions first at the Central Musical School (studying with T.E. Kestner), and then at the Moscow Conservatory, studying with Professor Y.I. Zak. Becoming a laureate at the age of 19 of Van Cliburn and Queen Elizabeth Competitions launched his performing career. In addition to his solo appearances, Nikolai Petrov performed with many of the world’s greatest orchestras and collaborated with leading conductors. “As a pianist, Nikolai Petrov happily combines the highest achievements of the world piano culture with Russian power and scope,” said conductor Gennady Rozhdestvensky. British Guardian wrote, “If you close your eyes you will have the impression that piano concerto is being played with six rather than two hands.” “The mighty Russian pianist possesses genuine hypnotics of Mephistopheles” – noted Italian Il Giornale. “Seldom can one experience so fully this music's primeval quality, starry distance, and divine pattern,” commented German Berliner Zeitung about Petrov’s performance of Bach recital. “The mastery and the might of Nikolai Petrov often reach depths so incredible, they take one's breath away,” wrote the London Times. Nikolai Petrov constantly extends the sphere of his activities by organizing and participating in festivals, competitions and master-classes. As the president of the Russian Art Academy, he is well-known for his active social position in the daily cultural life of Russia. In 2004 year, Nikolai Petrov accepted an offer to become the Artistic Director of the International Fund “New Names.” Mr. Petrov’s latest brainchild, Petrov Charitable Foundation, specializes in providing support for young musicians.


Jerome Rose
Jerome Rose / United States
Jerome Rose, hailed as "the Last Romantic of our own age" and one of America's most distinguished pianists, has been heard in major concert halls across five continents. A Gold Medalist from the International Busoni Competition, Mr. Rose began his international career while still in his early twenties. His catalogue of critically acclaimed recordings on Monarch Classics includes the Liszt Concerti with the Budapest Philharmonic, Liszt's Transcendental Etudes, the Complete Schumann Sonatas, "Davidsbundlertanze", and "Kreisleriana", the Last Three Beethoven Sonatas, and the Complete Ballades & Fantasy of Chopin.
He was a pupil of Adolph Baller when, at the age of 15, he debuted with the San Francisco Symphony. A graduate of the Mannes College and the Juilliard School of Music, Jerome Rose studied with Leonard Shure and Rudolf Serkin at Marlboro. In 1961 he was a winner of the Concert Artists Guild award and was also a Fulbright Scholar in Vienna. Mr. Rose has given masterclasses at the Moscow Conservatory, the Chopin Academy in Warsaw, the Mozarteum in Salzburg, the Munich Hochschule, and is a frequent guest at the Toho Conservatory of Music in Tokyo, Japan. He is on the Faculty of the Mannes College of Music and is Founder/Director of the International Keyboard Institute & Festival held every summer in New York City.
Mr. Rose’s performances at the Festival have been recorded by WFMT Chicago and NPR for worldwide radio broadcast. Mr. Rose appeared last year in recital in France, Italy, Germany, Austria, Spain, Croatia and Korea and served on the Faculties at the Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris and the Salzburg Mozarteum, where he will return next summer for recitals and classes. This fall he toured major cities in China (Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Beijing), giving recitals and masterclasses, and promoting his 4 volume book “Becoming a Virtuoso”. He continues this season with masterclass and recital appearances in the US and Europe. Mr. Rose was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Music from the State University of New York for his lifetime achievement in music.


Jeremy Siepmann
Jeremy Siepmann / Great Britain
Jeremy Siepmann is an internationally acclaimed writer, musician, teacher and broadcaster, and the editor of Piano magazine. In recent years his continuing series for Naxos Records - 'Life and Works' and 'Classics Explained' - have received exceptional accolades from critics and listeners on both sides of the Atlantic. Though long resident in England, he was born and formally educated in the United States. On completing his studies at the Mannes College of Music in New York, he moved to London, at the suggestion of Sir Malcolm Sargent. After several years as a freelance lecturer he was invited to join the staff of London University. For most of the last twenty years he has confined his teaching activity to the piano. His pupils, many coming from abroad to study with him, include pianists of worldwide repute. He has also given numerous masterclasses on both sides of the Atlantic. In January 2004 he was appointed Professor of Musical Aesthetics and the History of Piano Performance at the International Piano Academy - Lake Como, in Italy. As a writer he has contributed articles, reviews and interviews to numerous journals and reference works (including The New Statesman, The Listener, Encounter, The Musical Times, Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine and The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians), some of them being reprinted in book form (Oxford University Press, Robson Books). His books include two volumes on the history and literature of the piano, another on chamber music, and highly acclaimed biographies of Chopin, Brahms, Mozart, Beethoven and Tchaikovsky. Since December 1997, he has been the editor of Piano magazine, whose regular contributors include many of the world's greatest pianists. His career as a broadcaster began in New York in 1963 with an East Coast radio series on the life and work of Mozart, described by Alistair Cooke as "the best music program on American radio". On the strength of this, improbably, he was hired by the BBC as a humorist, in which capacity he furnished weekly satirical items on various aspects of American life. After a long break he returned to broadcasting in 1977, and has now devised, written and presented more than 1,000 programmes, including the international-award-winning series The Elements of Music. In 1988 he was appointed Head of Music at the BBC World Service, broadcasting to an estimated audience of 135 million. He left the Corporation in Spring 1994 to form his own independent production company.


Arie Vardi
Arie Vardi / Israel
Beginning his artistic career at the age of fifteen, Israeli born Arie Vardi went on to receive international acclaim as one of the country’s foremost pianists. After winning the Chopin Competition in Israel, he appeared with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra with Zubin Mehta, and upon winning the George Enescu International Competition in Bucharest, he played numerous concerts throughout Europe. Alongside his study of music at the Rubin Academy, he succeeded in achieving a degree in law at Tel Aviv University. Vardi continued his piano studies in Basel with Paul Baumgartaner and studied composition with Pierre Boulez and Karlheinz Stockhausen. He has performed widely as soloist with major orchestras under the baton of Semion Bychkov, Sergio Commissiona, Lukas Foss, Kurt Masur, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Zubin Mehta, Paul Paray, Paul Sacher and David Zinman, among others. His concert tours have taken him to Eastern and Western Europe, the United States, Latin America, the Far East, Australia and Japan. His first Russian tour, in 1992, included performances in Moscow, St. Petersburg and other cities. Vardi performs regularly as soloist-conductor, playing the complete set of concerti by Bach and Mozart, part of which he has played on the Hammerfluegel. In recent years he has specialized in the literature of the Impressionist period, including the entire repertoire of Debussy and Ravel. His RCA records have won international acclaim and prizes. Mr. Vardi’s extensive repertoire includes various Israeli works, many of which were dedicated to him. In addition to his concert career, Arie Vardi is a professor of piano at the Hochschule fuer Musik in Hannover and at the Rubin Academy of Music, Tel Aviv University, where he served as its director and chaired the Piano Faculty. More than 30 of his students have won first prizes in international competitions. Arie Vardi is best known to television viewers for his series “Master Classes”, the family series of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra which he conducts and presents, and currently for his new series “Intermezzo with Arik”. He has been a Jury member in most of the leading international piano competitions, such as Beijing, Cleveland, Hamamatsu, Leeds, Milan, Moscow, Munich, Salt Lake City, Santander, Sydney, Tokyo, Vienna, Warsaw, and others. He is the Artistic Advisor and Chairman of the Jury of the Arthur Rubinstein International Master Competition. Mr. Vardi has held Master Classes and presented lecture recitals at the Juilliard School of Music, the Paris Conservatoire, the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, the London Royal Academy, and many other major music centers. In the 2001 season, Arie Vardi directed, conducted and played a series of five concerts with the Israel Chamber Orchestra. The series, entitled “The Piano Concerto,” featured twelve concertos ranging from Bach to the 21st century. In the 2004-5 season he launched a new weekend series with the Israel Philharmonic, “Morning Intermezzo”, where he serves as conductor and presenter. Mr. Vardi was the recipient of the Minister of Education Award in 2004 for lifetime achievement.
Alexander Braginsky David Dubal Akiko Ebi Gabriel Kwok Nikolai Petrov Jerome Rose Jeremy Siepmann Arie Vardi
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