Andrea Bonatta, Italy
Andrea Bonatta has an active and successful career as a soloist, teacher, juror, conductor and author. He has performed in the most prestigious concert halls in the world and is a jury member of some of the most important international competitions. He has recorded Brahms’ complete works for piano, as well as CDs dedicated to Liszt and Schubert, which received top critical reviews. He also authored a book on the works of Brahms.
As a conductor he has worked among others with the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra in China, the Suwon Philharmonic Orchestra and the KBS Symphony Orchestra in South Korea, the Filarmonica Banatul Timisoara in Romania, the Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra in Georgia, the Orchestra del Teatro Olimpico di Vicenza and the Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi. His orchestra transcription of Liszt’s “Trauervorspiel und Marsch” has been premiered in South America.
Bonatta has been for several years Artistic Director and Chairman of the Jury of the Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolzano, Italy. He is Artistic Adviser of the Liszt Competition in Utrecht, Honorary Professor of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Guest Professor at the Mozarteum International Summer Academy in Salzburg, as well as Founder and Artistic Director of the Piano Academy Eppan in Italy.
Hyoung-Joon Chang, Korea
Since his debut with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra at the age of 16, Hyoung-Joon Chang has collaborated with world-renowned orchestras such as the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Symphony Orchestra of Russia, the Czech National Symphony, the Osaka Symphony Orchestra and the Victoria Symphony. He has given acclaimed solo recitals on international stages in Europe, the U.S., Canada, Japan, and Korea.
Dr. Chang received his doctoral degree from the Manhattan School of Music where he studied with Earl Wild and Constance Keene. He has been a jury member of many major international competitions, including CIPC.
Dr. Chang has taught master classes at leading schools around the world, including the Eastman School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, Beijing, Shanghai, Sichuan Conservatory, Royal College of Music, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Dresden, and Mannheim Hochschule. He has been a Professor of Piano at Seoul National University since 1995. An active and popular recording artist, Dr. Chang has recorded diverse piano concertos of Mozart, Prokofiev, Tchaikovsky, Gershwin, and Schnittke, with labels such as Pro Arte, Warner Music, and GENUIN.
Arnaldo Cohen, Brazil
Arnaldo Cohen enjoys a successful performance career, appearing regularly as a soloist and with major orchestras such as The Philadelphia Orchestra, The Cleveland Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and many more. He has collaborated with esteemed conductors including Kurt Masur, Kurt Sanderling, and Yehudi Menuhin. For five years he was a member of The Amadeus Trio, and performs frequently with various string quartets.
Mr. Cohen has recorded extensively. His recordings of Liszt, Schumann, Brahms, and others can be found on labels such as IMP Classics, Naxos and Vox. His pioneering CD, Three Centuries of Brazilian Music on the BIS label, was widely applauded by critics.
Mr. Cohen came to prominence after winning First Prize at the 1972 Busoni International Piano Competition. He graduated from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro with an honors degree in both piano and violin, while also studying for an engineering degree. He went on to become a professional violinist in the Rio de Janeiro Opera House Orchestra to earn his livelihood while continuing piano studies with Jacques Klein, a disciple of the legendary American pianist William Kapell.
Mr. Cohen is the recipient of a fellowship awarded by the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, and until recently held a professorship at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 2004, after living in London for 23 years, Mr. Cohen relocated to the U.S. and now holds a piano professorship with tenure at Indiana University. Mr. Cohen is also the Artistic Director for the Portland International Piano Series, one of the most prestigious keyboard recital series in North America.
Pavlina Dokovska, Bulgaria
Pavlina Dokovska has gained worldwide recognition touring Europe, the Far East, and the Americas with well-known orchestras throughout. She has appeared in recital in the world’s most distinguished venues, including Carnegie Hall’s Weill Hall (NYC); National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.); Wigmore Hall (London); Salle Gaveau (Paris); La Scala (Milan); Bösendorfer-Saal (Vienna); Suntory Hall (Tokyo) National Centre for the Performing Arts (Beijing); and many others. An avid chamber musician, she has collaborated with the great Bulgarian basso Nicolai Ghiaurov, sopranos Stefka Evstatieva and Krassimira Stoyanova, basso Mikhail Svetlov, violinist Robert McDuffie, and cellist Nathaniel Rosen.
Her recordings can be heard on Gega New, RCA, Koch International, Naxos, Arcadia, Elan, and Labor Records. Ms. Dokovska’s affinity for French music is evident in many of her recordings, including a CD dedicated to Les Six (Koch Schwann), which was listed as a New York Times “Critic’s Choice.”
Ms. Dokovska is the Coordinator of the Piano Department at Mannes College The New School for Music, Founder and Artistic Director of Mannes Festivals and Southwest Virginia Community College Festival of the Arts.
Jerome Lowenthal, USA
After studying with Olga Samaroff, William Kapell, Eduard Steuermann, and Alfred Cortot, and receiving coachings from Arthur Rubenstein, Jerome Lowenthal made his debut with the New York Philharmonic playing Bartok’s Concerto No. 2 in 1963. Since then, he has performed worldwide, with such well-known conductors as Barenboim, Ozawa, Tilson Thomas, Temirkanov, and Slatkin, as well as such giants of the past as Leonard Bernstein, Eugene Ormandy, Pierre Monteux, and Leopold Stokowski. He has played sonatas with Itzhak Perlman, piano duos with Ronit Amir (his late wife), Carmel Lowenthal (his daughter), and Ursula Oppens, as well as quintets with the Lark, Avalon and Shanghai Quartets.
Mr. Lowenthal has recently recorded the complete “Années de Pèlerinage” of Liszt. Additional recordings include concerti by Tchaikovsky and Liszt, solo works by Sinding and Bartok, opera paraphrases by Liszt and Busoni, and chamber music by Arensky and Taneyev.
Mr. Lowenthal is a dedicated and much-admired teacher, having taught for 23 years at The Juilliard School and 45 summers at the Music Academy of the West.
Ursula Oppens, USA
Ursula Oppens enjoys an active performance career. She has performed in recital worldwide. As a guest soloist she has performed with virtually all of the world’s major orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the orchestras of Chicago, Cleveland, San Francisco, and Milwaukee. Abroad, she has appeared with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, and many others. She also is an avid chamber musician.
Her extensive recordings have been recognized by four Grammy nominations: the fourth, in 2011-12, in the coveted category of “Best Classical Instrumental Solo” for Winging It: Piano Music of John Corigliano, released on Cedille Records.
Ms. Oppens is a Distinguished Professor of Music at Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York in New York City, a position she has held since 2008.
Antonio Pompa-Baldi, Italy/USA
First prize winner at the 1999 Cleveland International Piano Competition, Mr. Pompa-Baldi appears regularly at the world’s major concert venues, including New York’s Carnegie Hall, Paris’ Salle Pleyel, Milan’s Sala Verdi, Shanghai’s Grand Theatre, and Boston’s Symphony Hall. He performed in London, Tokyo, Seoul, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Kiev, Auckland, Hong Kong, and Beijing, where he played a recital in the Forbidden City Concert Hall and conducted master classes at the China National Conservatory.
His recording catalogue features 20 CDs. Among them, the entire piano repertoire of Grieg for Centaur Records and piano arrangements of songs by Francis Poulenc and Edith Piaf on the Steinway label. His latest CD, “After a Reading of…Liszt!,” is a tribute to Liszt recorded live in recital at the Stellenbosch Conservatory, and released by the South African label TwoPianists.
A Steinway artist, Mr. Pompa-Baldi currently serves on the piano faculty of the Cleveland Institute of Music.
Zhe Tang, China
Zhe Tang is one of the leading pianists and pedagogues of his generation in China. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music where he studied with Barry Snyder, Dr. Tang is on the faculty of Shanghai Conservatory of Music and is the youngest professor of piano in China. He has also been appointed as the Vice Dean of Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Director of Teaching and Research for the Piano Department, Chairman of the Piano Department for the Middle School Affiliated to the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Chairman of Shanghai Professional Pianists’ Society, and Artistic Director of Shanghai International Piano Festival & Institute.
Dr. Tang is a frequent adjudicator of piano competitions, having served on the jury of the Gina Bachauer, Bösendorfer, Hilton Head and all the major Chinese national competitions.
He recently was given the “Grand Award for Excellence in Teaching” by the Chinese government and was featured on the cover of Piano Artistry, the most important piano magazine in China.