Guest Artists & Faculty

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  • Kevin Kenner

    Kevin Kenner

    Artistic Director/ Teaching Artist/Performer

    Performing and teaching for this year’s Festival/Academy, Kevin Kenner, top prize winner of the 1990 International Chopin Competition in Warsaw, continues to serve as this year’s Artistic Director. Since 2015 he has also been teaching full time at the Frost School of Music. Previously, he taught for 11 years at the Royal College of Music in London and has served as Visiting Professor at the Academy of Music in Łódź, Poland where he recently received an honorary doctorate. In 2019 he was awarded the Johns Hopkins University Distinguished Alumnus Award as well as the Amicus Poloniae Award from the Polish Ambassador to the U.S. In February 2020 he chaired the jury of the Chopin Foundation’s National Chopin Competition in Miami. And in October 2021 he will join the jury of the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw for the second time.

  • Robert McDonald

    Teaching Artist 
     
    One of America’s most eminent piano professors and member of the faculties at both the Curtis Institute and the Juilliard School, Robert McDonald will be teaching a masterclass for our Academy. After winning the Gold medal at the International Busoni Competition and top prize at the William Kapell International Competition, Robert McDonald has toured extensively as soloist and chamber musician through the U.S., Europe, Asia and South America.

    He has performed with major orchestras in the United States and was the recital partner for many years to Isaac Stern and other distinguished instrumentalists. He has participated in the Marlboro, Casals, and Luzern Festivals, the Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center, and has broadcasted for BBC Television worldwide. He has appeared with the Takács, Vermeer, Juilliard, Brentano, Borromeo, American, Shanghai, and St. Lawrence string quartets as well as with Musicians from Marlboro.

    Awarded the Deutsche Schallplatten Critics Award, his discography includes recordings for Sony Classical, Bridge, Vox, Musical Heritage Society, ASV, and CRI. Robert McDonald is the artistic director of the Taos Music and Chamber Music Festival in New Mexico.

  • Zlata Chochieva

    Teaching Artist/Performer 

    We are pleased to welcome pianist Zlata Chochieva to join our Academy for the first time. Her recent rise to international acclaim is in part due to her highly-praised recordings of works by Chopin and Rachmaninov. Displaying a deep affinity with these composers, combined with probing honesty and imagination, they have established her as a distinctive voice amongst pianists. Hailed by Gramophone as “the possessor of a comprehensive technique who brings an inner glow to every bar”, Zlata Chochieva regularly appears at the most prestigious concert halls of Europe.

    Over the years Zlata has acquired many international competition prizes, including Szymanowski International Competition (Poland), Tivoli Piano Competition (Denmark), Mozart Prize at ARD Competition (Germany), First prizes at Frechilla-Zuloaga Competition (Spain) and Alberto Fano Piano Competition (Italy) and Silver Medal at the First International Piano Competition of Santa Catarina (Brazil), where she was also declared Best Performer of Chopin and Audience Favorite.

    Her Chopin Complete Etudes disc for Piano Classics was selected as an Editor’s Choice in Gramophone, and included in Gramophone’s list of 10 greatest Chopin recordings: “It is certainly one of the most consistently inspired, masterfully executed and beautiful-sounding versions I can recall.” (Jeremy Nicholas, Gramophone). Her 2015 CD of the Complete Etudes-Tableaux of Rachmaninov has likewise earned critical raves and been nominated for the German Record Critics’ Award.

    Zlata established an International Festival at Rachmaninov’s estate in Ivanovka and has been Director since 2018.

  • Edward Auer

    Teaching Artist/Performer

    Edward Auer, widely recognized as a leading interpreter of the works of Chopin, joins the Academy for the first time. As the first American to win a prize in the prestigious International Chopin Competition in Warsaw in 1965, he has returned to Poland for well over 20 concert tours.

    Mr. Auer is currently immersed in the project of recording most of his vast Chopin repertoire. Timed to coincide with the 200th anniversary of Chopin’s birth in 1810, the series will include the Concertos, the Sonatas, two volumes of Mazurkas and Polonaises, and many other works. Chopin Nocturnes and Scherzos Volumes I and II, and The Two Concertos (recorded with the Shanghai Quartet and bassist Peter Lloyd) have already appeared on the Culture/Demain label, and the Sonatas will be coming out soon. Long respected pianist and critic Harris Goldsmith says of the first Nocturnes recording, “Auer has a knack of surpassing the listener’s expectations by way of all sorts of felicitous turns of phrase and tempo, but thankfully the details of his irrepressible individuality are never permitted to break the long line of these diversified tone poems.”

    Born in New York on December 7, 1941, Edward Auer grew up in Los Angeles, studying piano with Aube Tzerko, a Schnabel protégé, and composition with Leonard Stein, a student of Arnold Schoenberg. A precocious chamber musician and the son of an accomplished amateur violist, he was playing the Mozart piano quartets and the Schumann quintet with his father and his friends when he was just eight years old. Already well known in the Los Angeles area in his early teens, he was winning competitions and appearing in concerts there, both as soloist and in chamber music. 

    After studies with Rosina Lhévinne at the Juilliard School (with full scholarship) he went to Paris on a Fulbright Study Grant to work with Julius Katchen. During his Paris stay he won the Grand Prix in the Concours Marguerite Long. He also holds prizes in the Tchaikovsky, Queen Elisabeth and Vienna Beethoven Competitions. Now, years later, these and other contests invite him to serve on their juries. The prize in the Tchaikovsky led to an invitation to the White House.

    In addition to his full‐time teaching commitment at Indiana University, Auer continues to perform and record. He has played solo recitals and concertos in over 30 countries on five continents, collaborating with such eminent conductors as Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Chailly, Herbert Blomstedt, Sergiu Comissiona, Robert Shaw, and Charles Dutoit.

  • Margarita Shevchenko

    Teaching Artist/Performer 

    Prizewinner of multiple major international piano competitions including the International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw, the Leeds International Piano Competition, the UNISA International Piano Competition in Pretoria, the Cleveland International Piano Competition, and the Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition, Margarita Shevchenko joins the Academy for the third time. Praised for her Chopin interpretations, she has also been the recipient of the Special "Chopin Prize" at five of these above-mentioned competitions.

    Shevchenko has toured throughout the world, giving recitals and concerto performances in the United States, Canada, throughout Europe, Brazil, Japan, Russia, Israel, and South Africa. Highlights of her many orchestral appearances include performances with the “Moscow Virtuosi” orchestra under Vladimir Spivakov, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra under Sir Simon Rattle, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, and Cape Town Symphony under JoAnn Faletta, Polish National Philharmonic, among many others.

    The leading newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung noted: "Pianist Margarita Shevchenko …proved to be sensational" and the New York Times called her playing "exemplary". Shevchenko was heard in live broadcasts in Canada, Great Britain, Denmark, Russia, South Africa, Germany, and throughout the USA, including WCLV Radio in Cleveland and WFMT Fine Arts Radio in Chicago.

    She has also recorded for NHK Television, Japan at NYC Steinway Hall. Shevchenko has given solo recitals to critical acclaim at New York's Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Old Opera House in Frankfurt; Salle Cortot, and Chatelet Theater in Paris; Tchaikovsky Hall and the Big Hall of Moscow Conservatory; Jack Singer Concert Hall, Calgary; Mann Auditorium, Tel-Aviv, Israel, and many others. Her four CDs include a collection of works by Schubert, Chopin, Beethoven, Scarlatti, and others. Music critic for the American Record Guide John Bell Young described them as “object lessons in musical intelligence and decorum."

    A former member of the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Miami International Piano Academy, Shevchenko has served as a judge of the American Paderewski International Piano Competition, Cleveland International Piano Competition, and the National Chopin Piano Competition of the USA, among others. She is currently an associate professor of piano at Michigan State University’s College of Music.

  • John Rink

    John Rink

    Guest Lecturer 
     
    Eminent scholar John Rink, professor at University of Cambridge and one of the world’s foremost authorities on the music of Fryderyk Chopin, returns to the Academy a second time to offer students a series of interactive workshops. He is a prize-winning author and expert on the manuscript and printed sources for Chopin's works, the performance history of the composer's music over the past two centuries (including Chopin's own performing practices), analysis of the repertoire, editorial practices, and aspects of critical reception. He is Editor in Chief of The Complete Chopin –A New Critical Edition, published by Peters Edition London, and has directed three major online projects focused on Chopin (www.chopinonline.ac.uk), in addition to producing acclaimed editions of the two piano concertos. Much of his recent work as a performer focuses on period instruments, including the Pleyel pianos that Chopin himself favored. He served on the jury of the 17th International Chopin Competition in 2015 and will return to Warsaw next October as a member of the jury for the 18th Chopin Competition.

  • Marina Frolova-Walker

    Marina Frolova-Walker is a Professor of Music History at Cambridge and a Fellow of Clare College, and also currently a professor of music at Gresham College in London. A Moscow-born musicologist, her major publications include Stalin's Music Prize: Soviet Culture and Politics (Yale, 2016), Russian Music and Nationalism from Glinka to Stalin (Yale, 2007), and Music and Soviet Power, 1917-32 (with Jonathan Walker, Boydell 2012). Elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2014, and the recipient of the RMA Dent Medal for her outstanding contribution to musicology, Professor Frolova-Walker is committed to sharing the insights gained from her research with a wider public, through talks, radio and TV appearances, and publications.

  • Ewa Pobłocka

    Chopin International Piano Competition prize winner Ewa Pobłocka joins the Academy for the first time. Coming to us from the Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz, Poland, Ewa Pobłocka has gained a reputation as one of the world’s most respected teachers of Chopin’s repertoire, particularly Chopin Mazurkas, for which she won a special prize in the 1980 Chopin Competition. She has also served on the jury of the International Chopin Competition and many others. Her popularity has brought her to all the major music centers of the world, has performed in prestigious halls such as the Barbican, Wigmore Hall, and Lincoln Center. She has recorded more than 50 discs for Deutsche Grammophon, Polskie Nagrania, Bearton, and CD Accord, many of which have received special prizes and recognition.