The 2016 Southeastern Piano Festival—the region’s only piano-focused arts event—begins Sunday, June 12 in Columbia, SC. The weeklong festival kicks off at the University of South Carolina with the highly anticipated Piano Extravaganza Gala Concert, a performance that showcases eight pianists, four Steinway grand pianos and multimedia, including the cutting-edge Steinway Spirio piano, known as the world’s highest resolution player piano. World-renowned artists follow throughout the week.
“It’s rare to have such a bright constellation of pianists in one city”, says Marina Lomazov, the festival’s Artistic Director.
2016 Guest Artists include Sergei Babayan, winner of the Queen Elisabeth and Hamamatsu International Competitions and soloist with orchestras worldwide, Ann Schein, a protégé of Arthur Rubinstein, whose remarkable career includes performing as soloist with the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestras, the duo of Ran Dank and Soyeon Kate Lee, first and second prize winners in the Naumburg Competition and rising star artist Eric Lu, prizewinner in the Warsaw Chopin Competition and a Southeastern Piano Festival alumnus. Juilliard Professor Julian Martin will join the festival as Chair of the Jury for the Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition.
In addition to the concerts, twenty of the most gifted pre-college pianists from across the country participate in a rigorous program of lessons and master classes, as well as competing in the Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition. The festival offers an insider’s view of the making of the next
generation of pianists, says Program Director Joseph Rackers. “The level of young pianists keeps rising, and any one of them has the potential to go on to a career as a professional pianist”.
Throughout the week, traditional and unconventional venues host performances, transforming downtown Columbia into a destination for piano concerts. “From the Columbia Museum of Art and Trinity Cathedral to the Big Apple historical building, there are concerts throughout downtown and something for everyone”, says Lomazov.
Moderately priced tickets make attending multiple concerts possible. Master classes, discussions and competition performances are free. The Southeastern Piano Festival “Konzert Kidz” program allows all children under the age of 18 to attend any of the concerts for free. A complete list of festival events and tickets are available at southeasternpianofestival.com.
2016 Southeastern Piano Festival Concert Schedule
June 12, 4 p.m. Johnson Performance Hall, Darla Moore School of Business
Marina Lomazov, Joseph Rackers, Philip Bush, Charles Fugo and guest pianists featured on four Steinway Grand pianos. Tickets: $20 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under
June 13, 7:30 p.m. USC School of Music
Rising Star artist Eric Lu. Tickets: $20 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under
June 14, 4:30 p.m. Big Apple Building
SEPF On the Road student participants concert, free
June 14, 7:30 p.m. Columbia Museum of Art
Sergei Babayan. Tickets: $20 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under
June 15, 7:30 p.m. USC School of Music
Soyeon Kate Lee and Ran Dank. Tickets: $20 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under
June 16, 7:30 p.m. Trinity Episcopal Cathedral
Ann Schein. Tickets: $20 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under
June 17, 10:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition, USC School of Music
SEPF Participants compete for the opportunity to perform with the South Carolina Philharmonic, free
June 18, 7:30 p.m. USC School of Music
Winners of the Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition. Tickets: $10 general admission, $5 students, free 18 and under