The five finalists for a prize valued at more than $100,000 from the American Pianists Association will be showcased in performance on New York’s classical station, WQXR (105.9 FM and online at wqxr.org) on Wednesday, May 19 at 9pm. There will be a simultaneous broadcast on WFYI in Indianapolis, home of the American Pianists Association. The program, hosted by Robert Sherman, is part of The McGraw Hill Companies Young Artists Showcase. It was recorded last month when the names of the finalists for the 2013 ProLiance Energy Classical Fellowship Awards of the American Pianists Association were revealed at Steinway Hall.
Andrew Staupe, 27, will open the broadcast with Pierre Jalbert’s Toccata; followed by Sara Daneshpour, 25, in Domenico Scarlatti’s Sonata in B minor, K. 27 and Rachmaninov’s Etude-tableau in A minor, Op. 39/6. Claire Huangci, 22 – the youngest finalist – will play three etudes by Alexander Scriabin: Op. 42/3, Op. 8/10, and Op. 8/12. Sean Chen, 23, will perform Ligeti’s Etude No. 13 (“The Devil’s Staircase”). For the finale, Eric Zuber, 26, will be heard in Rachmaninov’s Preludes in G-sharp minor, Op. 32/12 and B-flat major, Op. 23/12.
About the Five Finalists:
Sean Chen is second prize winner of the 2011 Seoul International Music Competition and a prizewinner in the 2009 Cleveland International Piano Competition. Born in Margate, FL and raised in Oak Park, CA, he has performed in Bucharest, Seoul, Taiwan, Los Angeles, Albuquerque, Miami, and New York. Chen received his undergraduate degree at the Juilliard School, where he won the 2010 Gina Bachauer Piano Competition, and he is currently pursuing his Master’s degree there. His teachers have included Jerome Lowenthal, Matti Raekallio, and teacher-mentor Edward Francis.
Sara Daneshpour is second prize winner of the 2007 William Kapell International Piano Competition, first prize and Gold Medal winner of the 2007 International Russian Music Piano Competition, and first prize winner of the 2003 Beethoven Society of America Competition. She joined the roster of Astral Artists as winner of the 2010 National Auditions. Daneshpour has performed in her hometown of Washington, D.C. as well as in New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Russia, Germany, Finland, Estonia, Denmark, and Sweden. She is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, studying under Leon Fleisher, and is now pursuing her Master’s degree at Juilliard with Yoheved Kaplinsky.
Claire Huangci won first prize in the 2010 National Chopin Piano Competition in Miami, and is a laureate in the 2010 Queen Elisabeth International Piano Competition. She made her debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra in 2003 and has since performed with orchestras in Stuttgart, Frankfurt, St. Petersburg, Moscow, and with the China Philharmonic, among others. Born in Rochester, NY, Huangci entered Philadelphia’s Settlement Music School at age seven and did her undergraduate work at the Curtis Institute of Music. She is currently studying in Germany at the Hochschule für Musik in Hanover with Professor Arie Vardi.
Andrew Staupe made his Carnegie Hall debut at Weill Recital Hall earlier this month as recipient of the 2011 Pro Musicis International Award, and he is the Gold Medalist of the 2010 Young Texas Artists Music Competition. The St. Paul, MN native has performed several times with the Minnesota Orchestra and has toured throughout the U.S. and Europe, appearing at the Concertgebouw in the Netherlands as well as in Russia, Holland, Latvia, Romania, France, Germany, and Bulgaria. Staupe received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the University of Minnesota, and is currently completing his DMA in Piano Performance at Rice University in Houston with Jon Kimura Parker.
Eric Zuber has won major prizes in seven international piano competitions: the Cleveland, Arthur Rubinstein, Seoul, Sydney, Dublin, Minnesota, and Hilton Head competitions. The Baltimore, MD native made his orchestral debut at the age of twelve with the Baltimore Symphony, and has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, Korean Symphony, and Ireland’s RTE National Symphony, among others. Zuber holds degrees from the Peabody Institute, Curtis Institute of Music, and the Juilliard School, and is currently pursuing his DMA at Peabody. His teachers have included Boris Slutsky, Leon Fleisher, Claude Frank, and Robert McDonald.