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Amateurs Performers

David
Binkley

Michael Brounoff

Jeanne
Craig

Noah DeGarmo

Robert
Finley

Simon
Finlow

Joel
Goodman

Andrew Grosbach

Ken
Iisaka

Mari
Ito

Darren
Lee

Jon
Lee

Lucy
Maxwell

Joann
Oh

Stanley
Sisskin

Michael
Slavin

Joel
Spangler

Utako Tanigawa

Spencer Thompson

Rebecca Wang

Weiling
Wang

Graeme Wilkinson

Mari
Yoshihara

 

 

 

David Binkley


Senior Strategist, DTE Energy
West Bloomfield Township, Michigan

Master Class Repertoire

Chopin: Barcarolle in F-sharp major, Op. 60
Chopin: Ballade No. 1 in G minor, Op. 23

 

Concerto Repertoire

Chopin: Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11 (I. Allegro maestoso)

 

As a first prize winner in the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition, David Binkley performed at Carnegie Hall debut on October 14, 2007. He was also a finalist at the Seattle International Piano Competition in 2008. His musical pursuits have led to fulfilling summers at the Interlochen Center for the Arts, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, the 2012 International Piano Festival in Poland, and most recently the 2014 InterHarmony International Music Festival in Germany. He is currently a Senior Strategist at DTE Energy where he works to develop policies and tools for the development of renewable energies.

 

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Michael Brounoff

U. S. Administrative Law Judge
Plano, Texas

Master Class Repertoire

Brahms: Klavirestücke, Op. 119, Nos. 1, 2 & 3
Prokofiev: Lieutenant Kije Suite, Op. 60 -"Kije's Wedding," & "Troika" (Arranged by Frederic Chiu)

 

Concerto Repertoire

Grieg: Concerto in A minor, Op. 16 (I Allegro molto moderato)

 

 

Although he suspended formal piano study after high school, Michael continued to play for personal enjoyment, serving as musical director of the satirical review, “Assault and Flattery” while in law school. As a practicing attorney, he still found time to direct the music for local productions of Broadway musicals, including Brigadoon, The Fantasticks, Anything Goes, The Grass Harp, Fiddler on the Roof, Oklahoma, and Guys & Dolls. He resumed formal piano study at age 53 with Dr. Tamas Ungar of Texas Christian University and—after accepting an appointment as Administrative Law Judge for the Social Security Administration in Syracuse, NY— with Dr. Fred Karpoff of Syracuse University. Transferring back to Dallas, he resumed study with Dr. Ungar. He has competed in the Van Cliburn Foundation’s, International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs four times, advancing to the semi-final round three times. He has attended Piano Texas Academy and Festival at TCU every year since 2000 except one, and won in competition the privilege of concerto performance with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra four times. Michael lives in Plano, TX with his wife of 37 years, Martha Jane, their son, David Franklin, and Michael’s piano, a 9-foot Knabe named “Obiwan.”

 

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Jeanne Craig

Bedford County (VA) Public Schools
General Music Teacher and Choral Director

Forest, Virginia

Master Class Repertoire

Chopin: Ballade No. 1 in G minor, Op. 23
Prokofiev: Suggestion Diabolique, Op. 4, No. 4

Concerto Repertoire

Mozart: Concerto No. 20 in D minor, K. 466 (I. Allegro)

 

Jeanne Backofen Craig began piano studies at the age of six. A year later, she began competing at the international level. She made her orchestral debut with the Cincinnati Symphony at the age of twelve as a grand prize winner in the Young Artist Division of the 1982 American Music Scholarship Association's Concerto Competition. After college, she completely retired from competition and performance for 25 years, until she entered the 2016 Cliburn Competition for Outstanding Amateurs, where she advanced to the semi-final round of twelve. Since the Cliburn, Jeanne has won 2nd place in the Washington, D.C. International Piano Competition (as well as the audience and press jury awards) and 1st place in the adult amateur division of the Bradshaw & Buono Piano Competition. In 2017, Jeanne performed Rhapsody in Blue with the Jefferson Forest High School Wind Symphony and in recital at Carnegie Hall and the Gasteig Zentrum in Munich, Germany. After seventeen years as the Director of Liturgy at her church, Jeanne returned to the public schools in the fall of 2017 as a member of the faculty of Forest Middle and Jefferson Forest High School where she directs the choirs and teaches Music Appreciation.

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Noah DeGarmo

Emergency Medicine Physician, Team Health
Dallas, Texas

Master Class Repertoire

Prokofiev: Sarcasms, Op. 17
Wagner/Liszt: Liebestod from Tristan Und Isolde

 

Concerto Repertoire

Shostakovich: Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 102 (I. Allegro)

 

Noah C. DeGarmo works primarily as an Emergency Medicine Physician, but his primary passion has always been piano. He has studied with Iris Graffman Wenglin, Xak Bjerken, Alan Chow, and currently Matthew Kline. He has played in master classes with Leon Fleischer and Tong-Il Han. Concerto performances include Mozart No. 20, Beethoven No. 3, and Rhapsody in Blue, most recently as finalist in the Chicago Amateur Piano Competition in 2012. After moving to Dallas a few years ago, he competed in the Cliburn Amateur competition as a quarterfinalist in 2016 and received second place later that summer at the Chicago Amateur Piano Competition. Outside of music he enjoys his two golden retrievers, Mayzie and Ella, as well as travel and cooking.

 

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Robert Finley


Retired electronics engineer

Northborough, Massachusetts

Master Class Repertoire

Scriabin: Sonata No. 3 in F-sharp minor, Op. 23 (I. Dramàtico and III. Andante)
Scriabin: Etude in C-sharp major, Op. 8, No. 1
               Etude in B major, Op. 8 No. 4
               Etude on B-flat minor, Op. 8 No. 11

Concerto Repertoire

Tchaikovsky: Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23
(II. Andante semplice - Prestissimo - Tempo I and III. Allegro con fuoco - Molto meno mosso - Allegro vivo)

 

Robert Finley was born in Hull, England, and is a retired electronics engineer. He began to play the piano at the age of 7, studied at Trinity College of Music and with Norma Fisher, Albert Ferber and in the masterclasses of Jorge Bolet, Louis Kentner and Vlado Perlemuter. He studied electronic engineering at Sussex University and worked in the UK and USA in the field of telecommunications. He gained the ARCM diploma with Honours from the Royal College of Music in 1976. He played recitals and concertos in the USA, UK, Russia, France, Germany, Poland, Hungary, Argentina, Japan and Israel. He is the founder of the Boston Piano Amateurs Association that organizes international piano competitions every two years. He was the winner of the 2012 Yamaha and Pianist Magazine amateur piano competition in Manchester, UK. In 2013 he was invited back to give a recital at the Chethams School of Music and played the first movement of the Chopin 2nd Piano Concerto with the Manchester Camerata orchestra. In 2012 he played the Liszt 1st Piano Concerto with the Boston Civic Symphony Orchestra. In 2015 he gave a recital at the Gasteig auditorium in Munich Germany and also two recitals at the Earth Plaza Auditorium in Yokohama Japan. He won the 2nd prize in the Piano Bridges Competition in St. Petersburg Russia in 2016. In January 2018 he gave a recital at the Alexander Goldenweiser Museum in Moscow.

 

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Simon Finlow

Retired Database Engineer
Washington, District of Columbia

Master Class Repertoire

Balakirev: Mazurka No. 5 in D major
                 Mazurka No. 6 in A-flat
Balakirev: “Islamey: Oriental Fantasy”

 

Concerto Repertoire

Brahms: Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15 (III. Allegro non troppo)

 

Simon Finlow was born and raised in England.  He started learning piano at age 4 and studied with Imogen Cooper from 1972 to 1973.  He graduated with a BA/MA from Oxford University and subsequently earned a PhD in music from King’s College, Cambridge.  Dr. Finlow performed regularly while at university; highlights included concert performances of the Brahms B-flat Concerto, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, and Mozart’s Concerto in A, K.488. In 1985, Dr. Finlow immigrated to the US, where he obtained a Masters degree in computer science, became a US citizen, and worked as an IT professional for the next 25 years.  In 2014, he quit his job and began to practice piano seriously again. With the support of his piano teacher, Michael Adcock at the Washington Conservatory of Music, he set about rebuilding his repertoire and gradually started performing again after a 30-year hiatus. Over the past three years, he has performed both solo and chamber music in recitals throughout the Washington area and competed in various competitions, including the 7th Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition (2016) and the 9th Boston International Competition (2017); at last year’s Washington International Piano Artists Competition, he won special prizes for best performance of a work from the Romantic period and best performance of a Beethoven composition. Simon has also performed and participated in master classes with distinguished artists Joaquin Achuccaro, John Owings, Brian Ganz, Ann Schein, Simone Dinnerstein, and, most recently, Santiago Rodriguez.

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Joel Goodman

 

Professor of Pharmacology, UT Southwestern Medical School
Carrollton, Texas

Master Class Repertoire

Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition (1-5)
Chopin: Ballade No. 3 in A-flat major, Op. 47

Concerto Repertoire

Prokofiev: Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 16 (I. Andantino - Allegretto)

 

 

Joel Goodman has played the piano since childhood – in New York City as a young boy, in Southern California during his school years, and in Dallas since 1982. He took private lessons through his mid 20s, and then started up again in 1999, studying with Adam Wodnicki at University of North Texas.  Goodman has played in Van Cliburn  Amateur Competitions as well as the firstBerlin Amateur Competition. He has performed with the Ft. Worth Symphony three times at Piano Texas.  Goodman received both his doctoral training in pharmacology and post­doctoral work in  cell and molecular biology in Los Angeles. Since 1982 he has been on the faculty of UT Southwestern Medical  School in Dallas, where he directs a research program in fat storage mechanisms.  He also teaches medical and  doctoral students, and directs the science outreach office (Science Teacher Access to Resources at Southwestern).  Besides piano, Joel also enjoys his bicycle and train commute to work, West Coast Swing, Renaissance Weekend,  and wasting way too much time surfing the internet.  

 

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Andrew Grosbach


Aeronautical Engineer, Lockheed Martin
Fort Worth, Texas

Master Class Repertoire

Scriabin: Fantasy in B minor, Op. 28
Chopin: Barcarolle in F-sharp major, Op. 60

Concerto Repertoire

Mendelssohn: Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 25 (complete)

Andrew Grosbach grew up in Minnesota and began playing the piano at the age of five. During primary and secondary school he competed and placed as a finalist numerous times in Minnesota state piano competitions. In addition to taking lessons, he accompanied his high school choir and jazz band. Andrew pursued higher education at Iowa State University, where he received a degree in Aerospace Engineering in the winter of 2015. While at Iowa State, Andrew briefly studied the piano under Dr. William David. After graduation, Andrew moved to Fort Worth Texas and began work as an aircraft structural engineer. He currently studies the piano with Dr. Ilka Araújo at Texas Wesleyan University.

 

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Ken Iisaka


Software Engineer, Indeed
Foster City, California

Master Class Repertoire

Medtner: Forgotten Melodies, Op. 38

 

Concerto Repertoire

Prokofiev: Concerto No. 3 in C major, Op. 26 (I. Andante - Allegro)

 

A native of Japan, music captured Ken Iisaka’s heart at an early age, and began taking lessons at age 4. He once dreamed of becoming a concert pianist, but computer captured his mind in his adolescence. After obtaining a degree in computer science and artificial intelligence, Ken has worked internationally as a software engineer. He currently works in the field of machine learning. Musically, he often leveraged his freedom as an amateur to explore underappreciated works. He recently performed the first complete cycle of Medtner Forgotten Melodies, a tragic collection that was written during the bloody turmoil of the Bolshevik Revolution, at the Berliner Philharmonie. He performs concerts on a regular basis, as a soloist and a chamber musician, and recently performed in Fort Worth with members of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. He was the first-prize winner of the Washington International Piano Artist Competition, and thrice finalist at the Van Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, with Yvonne Liu whom he met at the 2011 Cliburn Amateur competition, surrounded by nearly 40’ of keyboard instruments: 4 pianos and a harpsichord, not including electric keyboards.

 

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Mari Ito


Architect, Stonehill & Taylor Architects
New York, New York

Master Class Repertoire

Schumann: Humoresque, Op. 20
            I. Einfach-Serh rasch und leicht-Noch rascher- Erstes Tempo-Wie im Anfang

 

Concerto Repertoire

Bach: Concerto in D minor, BWV1052 (III. Allegro)

 

Japanese native, Mari Ito obtained BA and MA in architecture and holds first class license in Japan. She practiced architectural design in her own firm for years in Sapporo, Japan and currently works as project manager at Stonehill Taylor Architects in NYC for high-end hotel design and construction administration. Works include Peninsula NY, Intercontinental Barclay, Hilton Atlanta Downtown and the Carlyle. Inspired by the high cultural environment of NYC, she resumed piano playing in 2010, enrolling in Juilliard School evening division. She has participated in Cliburn Amateur Piano Competition 2011, Chicago Amateur Piano Competition 2016. Since 2012, she enjoys studying and performing at Piano Texas.

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Darren Lee

Financial and income tax advisor, Finance professor
Toronto, , Canada

Master Class Repertoire

Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 (I. Moderato)
Bach: Italian Concerto in F major, BWV 971

Concerto Repertoire

Beethoven: Concerto No. 3 in C minor Op. 37 (I. Allegro con brio)

 

Darren was a participant in the Piano Texas Amateurs Program in 2014 and 2015 and performed with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra in 2014.  He has a repertoire of over 20 piano concertos ranging from Bach to Barber and has performed with numerous professional orchestras.  Darren is based in Toronto, Canada and his professional career as a CPA involves roles as an income tax and financial advisor as well as an accounting and finance instructor.  In his spare time, he is a highly competitive runner and frequently travels the world in search of the perfect race.  Highlights of his marathon running exploits include those in Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, London, Paris, Berlin, Rotterdam, and Fukuoka.

 

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Jon Lee


Software Manager
San Francisco, California

Master Class Repetoire

Prokofiev: Sonata No. 7 in B-flat major, Op. 83
Bach: French Suite No. 5 in G major, BWV 816

 

Jon Lee began his piano studies at age 6 and performed his first solo recital at 14. During his formative years in Wisconsin and Utah he studied with Barbara Henry, Elaine Bliss, Donald Walker, and Gary Amano. His active participation in the competition circuit led to wins in the Utah State Fairpark Salute to Youth competition, Utah State University Piano Festival, state division of the MTNA Piano Competition, as well as a finalist in the Kingsville International, Stravinsky International, and Junior Gina Bachauer International Piano Competitions. Jon attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to pursue a computer science degree, during which he studied piano performance under David Deveau. In addition to participating in master classes with Leon Fleisher, André-Michel Schub, and Russell Sherman, Jon has performed with the Utah Symphony and Boston Pops Orchestra. A resident of San Francisco, Jon continues further piano study with Yoshikazu Nagai while working in technology as a software engineering manager in the Bay area.

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Lucy Maxwell


Medical Business Administrator
Anchorage, Alaska

Master Class Repetoire

Prokofiev: Sonata No. 6 in A major, Op. 82: (I. Allegro Moderato and II. Allegretto)

Concerto Repetoire

Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Op. 30 (I. Allegro ma non tanto)

 

Lucy Maxwell made her Carnegie Weill Hall debut in 2016 playing the "unplayable" Lavapiés from Iberia by Albéniz and has followed with a debut performance at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage in 2018. Lucy has actively performed in various piano festivals across the USA including Symphony of Sounds in Alaska, Piano Texas Piano Festival and California Concerto Weekend where she dazzled audiences with an unprecedented performance of the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 2. Her epic performance was nominated Judge’s Distinction Award (Plaque Trophy) Winner of the American Protégé International Concerto Competition 2018. She has also won first prize at the Aloha International Piano Competition 2016 and in the American Protégé International Competition of Romantic Music 2016. With a unique Chinese-born Australian upbringing, Lucy began piano studies at the age of four and obtained her AMusA in piano performance under the tutelage of James Muir in Sydney. She now resides in Alaska, USA and in addition to her musical pursuits, Lucy holds a Bachelors in Commerce and Liberal Studies from the University of Sydney and is the Co-Founder and Administrator of Arctic Spine and Arctic Surgery Center, a premier medical clinic and ambulatory surgery facility in Alaska. Outside her vocation, Lucy's avocation in piano has been influenced by her private teacher and mentor Dr Timothy Smith, Associate Dean of Performing Arts at the University of Alaska, in addition to the privilege of studying masterclasses with world-class pianists such as Jon Nakamatsu, Piers Lane, Jill Timmons, Natasha Paremski, Igor Resnianski, Gwendolyn Mok, Hui-Ying Tawaststjerna.

 

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Joann Oh

Office Manager
Irvine, California

Master Class Repertoire

Rachmaninoff: Moment Musical in B minor, Op. 16, No. 3
Schubert: Impromptu in G-flat major, D.899 Op. 90, No. 3

 

Concerto Repertoire

Grieg: Concerto in A minor, Op. 16 (III. Allegro moderato molto e marcato – Quasi presto – Andante maestoso)

 

Born in Los Angeles, Joann Oh earned degrees in German studies and pre-med at Pomona College (Claremont, California) and Wesleyan University (Middletown, Connecticut). In June 2016, Ms. Oh was chosen to perform in the Cliburn Amateur Competition in Fort Worth, TX. She is the winner of the Elizabeth Tishler prize in piano and a grant recipient of the Yale-Griffith Scholarship to study music and language in Vienna and Munich; in Vienna, she studied piano with Rosario Marciano. Previously, Ms. Oh performed with orchestra in San Jose, CA with the California Concerto Weekend Orchestra. For the last 3 years, Ms. Oh has participated in recitals and masterclasses at Piano Texas in Fort Worth, TX. In addition to these honors, Ms. Oh was awarded a scholarship from the Korean-American Foundation for academic excellence. Currently a student of Steven Vanhauwaert, Ms. Oh resides in Orange County, California, and works as an office manager. In high school, Ms. Oh was a nationally ranked synchronized swimmer.

 

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Stanley Sisskin

Software Developer
New York City, New York

Master Class Repetoire

Ravel: Sonatine
Mozart: Concerto No. 17 in G major, K. 453 (I. Allegro)

 

Concerto Repertoire

Mozart: Concerto No. 17 in G major, K. 453 (II. Andante – III. Allegretto – Presto)

Stanley Sisskin received a Bachelor's degree in music from the University of California at Berkeley, and a Master’s Degree in Accompanying and Chamber Music from the Manhattan School of Music. Mr. Sisskin was the first prize winner of the Chicago International Amateur Competition, concerto division in 2014. He has appeared as soloist with the New York Piano Society, with the New York Concerti Sinfonietta, and with the Fort Worth Symphony as part of the PianoTexas Amateur Program. Mr. Sisskin has worked as a software developer for Bloomberg, LP since 2002.

 

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Michael Slavin

Retired Physician
Manhasset, New York

 

Master Class Repertoire

Prokofiev: Sonata No. 2 in D minor, Op. 14 (I. Allegro ma non troppo - II. Allegro marcato)
Prokofiev: Sonata No. 1 in F minor. Op. 1

Concerto Repertoire

Chopin: Concerto No. 2 in F minor, Op. 21 (I. Maestoso)

I began playing the piano at age 5, and at age 9, attended the Juilliard School of Music preparatory division for the next 10 years. My undergraduate college years were spent at Cooper Union in New York City where I received a bachelor’s degree in physics. I then attended medical school, and afterwards practiced ophthalmology and neuroophthalmology in Long Island for 25 years.

At Juilliard, I gave many local piano recitals (two at Town Hall in NY City) many of which were broadcasted by WQXR and WNYC. At age 11, I performed the Mozart Piano Concerto in D major (the Coronation) with the Little Orchestra Society in Lincoln Center. Several years later after winning a piano concerto competition (circa 1965), I performed Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in the Brooklyn Academy of Music with the Brooklyn Philharmonic.

My retirement from ophthalmology practice several years ago has afforded me the time to again study music and practice the piano seriously. Since then, I have recorded all 4 Chopin Scherzi and all 21 of the Chopin Nocturnes. I was awarded first prize in the Chicago international amateur piano concerto competition in May 2012, and was a second prize winner in an international piano competition in Colorado Springs (2013). I was the winner of the 12th Washington international piano artist’s competition in 2014. In March 2015, I was a first prize winner in the Paris International Piano Competition for amateurs, and in Sept 2015 received first prize in the 3rd international amateur Chopin Competition in Warsaw, Poland. I was awarded the silver medal at the most recent (2016) Van Cliburn International Piano competition for amateurs. I have given numerous recitals in the New York City and Washington DC area. I am a member of the New York Piano Society.

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Joel Spangler

Federal Administrative Law Judge
Knoxville, Tennessee

Master Class Repertoire

Kreisler/Rachmaninoff: Liebesfreud
Liszt: Mephisto Waltz No. 1 “Der Tanz in der Dorfshenke” (The Dance in the Village Inn)

 

Concerto Repertoire

Beethoven: Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15 (I. Allegro con brio)

 

Todd received a bachelor’s degree in piano performance and a master’s degree in music education from Morehead State University (Morehead, Kentucky), before embarking on a career in law. He is a graduate of the Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University and, for most of his professional life has worked in all facets of litigation. After many years as a solo practitioner and prosecutor, Todd began working for the Social Security Administration. He is currently an Administrative Law Judge in Knoxville, Tennessee. Todd enjoys all styles of music including jazz and church music. He is organist/pianist at the Fountain City Presbyterian Church in Fountain City, Tennessee. He currently studies with Dr. Chih-Long Hu at the University of Tennessee. He enjoys swimming and cycling

 

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Utako Tanigawa

Technology Executive Advisor, Itec International, LLC
Dawsonville, Georgia.

 

Master Class Repertoire

Chopin: Scherzo No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 31

 

Concerto Repertoire

Mozart: Concerto No. 23 in A major K. 488 (I. Allegro)

 

Utako Tanigawa, born in Osaka, Japan, started playing the piano at the age of three; however she gave up playing at thirteen. She later came to the U.S. and earned multiple degrees in Mathematics, Computer Science, Software Engineering, Management Science and Engineering, and a Ph.D. in Computer Information Systems. Dr. Tanigawa has been engaged in executive positions in global corporations for more than three decades, while serving as a lecturer at multiple universities such as Stanford, Boston, Chicago, and Colorado University. Several years ago, her life had a dramatic turn due to a life threatening illness. Although it severely damaged her body, her love of music returned and provided a tangible lifeline. Today music continues to play a key soothing and healing role as her recovery continues. She has been a contestant at several armature competitions such as Van Cliburn Outstanding Amateur, Chopin Competition for Amateur Pianists in Warsaw, Poland, Washington DC International Piano Artist Competition, and Seattle International Piano Competition. After moving to Georgia, she started Georgia Musicale Group in 2016 to share the joy of classical music with others. The members are from wide variety backgrounds such as scientists, medical doctors, teachers, and retired music lovers. Many of them have had desire to play for years, but they didn’t have opportunities or they were too nervous to play in front of people. We meet three times a month to play the pieces that we are working on in addition to the concerts almost every month. Members are vocalists, and any instrument players including ensemble playing. Our mission is to increase appreciation of classical music through listening and performing opportunities. We are kindred spirits who support and encourage each other.

 

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Spencer Thompson

Stephenson Cancer Center/OU Physicians
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Master Class Repertoire

Chopin: Scherzo No. 3 in C-sharp minor, Op. 39
Rachmaninoff: Prelude in A-flat major, Op. 23, No. 8
                       Prelude in E-flat minor, Op. 23, No. 9

 

Concerto Repertoire

Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 (I. Moderato)

 

Born in Bountiful, Utah, J. Spencer Thompson studied piano with Lennox Larson and Gladys Gladstone Rosenberg at the University of Utah and received a bachelor’s degree in Music, Zoology and Spanish from Brigham Young University in 1985. After attending the University of Utah School of Medicine, he completed his residency in radiation oncology at the University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Currently, he is an associate professor in the department of radiation and oncology at the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center in Oklahoma City. He currently studies with Sergio Monteiro at Oklahoma City University. He competed in the Cliburn Amateur competition in 2011 and 2016 and he enjoys cooking, skiing, traveling, reading, and rooting for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

 

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Rebecca Wang

Actuary
Tokyo, Japan

Master Class Repertoire

Rachmaninoff: Moments Musicaux, Op. 16 (Complete Nos. 1-6)
No. 1  Andantino in B-flat minor
No. 2  Allegretto in E-flat minor
No. 3  Andante cantabile in B minor
No. 4  Presto in E minor
No. 5  Adagio sostenuto in D-flat major
No. 6  Maestoso in C major

Medtner: “Primavera” from  The Forgotten Melodies Op. 39, No. 3

 

Concerto Repertoire

Beethoven: Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15 (I. Allegro con brio)

 

Rebecca Kao Wang was born in Hong Kong and currently lives in Tokyo, but she grew up in the Boston area, studying music under Jade Lin in Newton, Massachusetts, Beatrice Erdely in Concord, Massachusetts, and now Kaoru Fukuda in Tokyo, Japan . She has also taken lessons with Tamara Poddubnaya and Mari Asakawa. Ms. Wang minored in music and majored in computer science engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, graduated in 1990. During her college years, she had given many personal and chamber music recitals. In the ensuing 25 years, Ms. Wang worked in the corporate world and became a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries. Asia beckoned again for Ms. Wang in 2007, so the family moved in 2007 for her husband’s job. She has been taking some time off from work during recent years to stay home. As her two nowteenage sons become more independent, Ms. Wang has found herself with more time to devote to things she enjoys doing, such as piano, painting and exercising. She was a competitor at the Seventh Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition in 2016, and a participant of Piano Texas in 2016. Ms. Wang will also be hiking at Mt. Everest in fall of 2018.

 

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Weiling Wang

Computer Network Engineering, Verizon
Plano, Texas

Master Class Repertoire

Paderewski: "Un Moment Musical" from Miscellanea, Op. 16, No. 6
Chopin: Waltz in E minor, Op. Posthumous

 

Since graduating from Rice University with a degree in computer science, Wei Ling has been developing advanced computer networks in the telecommunication industry. She currently builds cloud computer networks to transport voice and data for consumers and global companies. Wei Ling participated in several amateur piano competitions in Boston, Chicago, and Washington D.C. She is also an active supporter of music schools and non-profit music organizations in the city of Dallas and Fort Worth.

 

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Graeme Wilkinson

Air Canada, In-flight Services, retired
Montreal, Canada

 

Master Class Repertoire

Rachmaninov: Prélude in B minor, Op. 32, No. 10
Schumann: Davisdbündlertänze Op. 6, Nos. 1 - 6

 

Concerto Repertoire

Beethoven: Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major, Op. 19 (I. Allegro con brio)

 

Graeme Wilkinson was born in Vancouver, Canada, and first studied music seriously while completing a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and French Literature at the University of British Columbia.

Further studies in Switzerland included piano instruction at the Conservatories of Neuchâtel and Lausanne.

In 1979, he was employed by Air Canada, and remained with the company for the next thirty years. Graeme furthered his musical education at the Vancouver Academy of Music, and obtained an Associateship Diploma in Piano Performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto.

He has resided in Montreal since 1989, where he obtained a Bachelor of Music degree at l'Université du Québec à Montréal , and a Diploma in Advanced Music Performance Studies from Concordia University.

In 1999, Graeme took his musical avocation a step further, and competed in the first Van Cliburn International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs in Fort Worth, Texas.

Since that time, he has been a regular on the on the International Piano Amateur circuit, performing in competitions and workshops in Paris, Berlin, Warsaw, Czech Republic, Manchester UK, Colorado Springs, Washington D.C., Boston, Chicago, and Fort Worth, where he remains a frequent participant at Piano Texas. Graeme is active in choral work in Montreal, singing bass with the le Choeur de l'Université du Québec à Montréal.

In addition to numerous concerts in and around their home base, the choir has performed at Carnegie Hall, New York City, la Cathédrale de Lausanne, Switzerland, and at Béla Bartók National Concert Hall, Budapest, Hungary.

Since 2008 he has also sung with the Chorus of the Montreal Symphony, under Maestro Kent Nagano, and with the Concordia University Chamber Choir, under the direction of the late Christopher Jackson.

In 2015 Graeme became a founding member of the amateur opera company “Light Opera of Montreal” Hobbies and interests include kayaking in the Southern Gulf Islands of Western Canada,transcendental meditation, animal rights, chamber music and musicology.

 

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Mari Yoshihara

Professor of American Studies – University of Hawaii
Honolulu, Hawaii

Master Class Repertoire

Aleksey Stanchinsky: Nocturne (1907)
Sergey Lyapunov: Nocturne in D-flat major, Op. 8

 

Mari Yoshihara is Professor of American Studies at the University of Hawaiʻi, specializing in U.S. cultural history, U.S.-Asian relations, literary and cultural studies, and gender studies. She is the author of many books, including Embracing the East: White Women and American Orientalism (Oxford, 2003) and Musicians from a Different Shore: Asians and Asian Americans in Classical Music (Temple, 2007). Her Japanese-language publications include a book about the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition as well as a book about contemporary American society and culture based on her own experience with online dating. She is currently completing her new book, tentatively titled Dearest Lenny: Letters from Japan and the Making of the World Maestro, scheduled for publication by Oxford University Press in 2018. Since 2014, she has also served as the Editor of American Quarterly, the journal of the American Studies Association. As an avid amateur pianist, she studies with Thomas Yee and gives annual recitals in Honolulu. She participated in the Van Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition in 2011 and 2016 and won first prize in the Aloha International Piano Festival Amateur Competition in 2014.

 

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