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Student Information

Since our first season, we have achieved and surpassed our goals. Besides progressing towards artistic excellence, our students have created an atmosphere of love, support, and friendship that would extend far beyond the festival—or even the bounds of music.

When I first came to this house, I knew that I was home and that I would find the love of my family here in this place."
David Aladashvili, Pianist, from Republic of Georgia
Festival Student and Foundation Scholarship Recipient, now in the Juilliard School
In the two and a half years, there are so many wonderful things that happened...the time we played, we smile. The time we are together, they are the most precious treasures."
Qi Zhang, Pianist, from China
Festival Student and Foundation Scholarship Recipient, now in the Juilliard School

David Aladashvili, Pianist, from Republic of Georgia

David Aladashvili was born in Tbilisi, Georgia, in 1990. He began to study piano at the age of 11 with Leila Mumladze. At the age of 15, he was accepted at the Tbilisi Special Music School to study with Daredjan Tsintsadze. In 2007, he moved to New York City where he began his studies at the Juilliard School's Pre-College Division with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol. He has participated in numerous master classes with professors such as Alexander Banduryansky, Yoheved Kaplinsky and Alexander Korsantia among others and he has attended the Vladimir Nielsen Piano since its inaugural season in 2007. This year marked Mr. Aladashvili's New York City debut at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall, playing primarily works of Schumann and Chopin, in celebration of the composers' Bicentennials. Hailed as "a sensitive virtuoso born for the stage", he is the laureate of many national and international competitions including the International Competition for Young Pianists in Tbilisi (2001), the Vladimir Spikanov International Festival in Moscow (2005) and the Grand Prix at the Nikolai Rubenstein Piano Competition in Paris (2006). He has given recitals throughout Georgia, Russia, Germany, France and the United States. In 2005, he received Georgia's prestigious Presidential Scholarship Award for Piano Performances and is a Juilliard School's Van Cliburn Alumni Scholarship and Susan W. Rose Piano Fellowship recipient. David has appeared on several TV and radio programs on leading Georgian, Russian and European broadcasts and he is currently enrolled in the Bachelor program at the Juilliard School, studying with Mr. Jerome Lowenthal.

John Bowler, Pianist, from New York City

John Bowler was born in New York in 1993. He began to study music at the age of four at the School for Strings before entering Juilliard Pre-College at age 11 to study with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol. He has won awards in several competitions including the Young Artists Piano Showcase, the American Fine Arts Festival and the American Association for the Development of the Gifted and Talented (AADGT). John has performed at Carnegie Hall's Weill Hall, Steinway Hall, CAMI Hall, Merkin Hall, the National Arts Club and the Juilliard School in New York City. He currently attends Stuyvesant High School where he is a member of the Math Team.

Stanley Chernavsky, Pianist, Livingston, New Jersey

Stanley Chernavsky was born in Livingston, New Jersey in 1996. He began to study the piano at the age of six.  In 2008, he entered the Juilliard School Pre-College Division, where he has been under the instruction of Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol.  Stanley has won awards in several competitions, including the 2006 Piano Teachers Society of America Spring Festival, and the 2008 International Young Musicians Competition (AADGT).  He has performed in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, and at the Juilliard School.  Stanley currently attends Livingston High School, and recently finished the 8th grade with high honors.  In addition to his musical studies, his interests include tennis, skiing, scuba diving, painting, and billiards.

Vinnicius Dias, Pianist, Rio de Janeiro

Vinnicius Dias was born in Rio de Janeiro on April, 15th of 1990 and started playing the piano with his father, Itajara Dias (a famous composer and pianist in Brazil) at the age of 2. At 4, he composed a song which is included in the father’s first CD.  At 7, Vinnicius went to the Conservatório de Música de Niterói – RJ, where he studied with Ruth Vianna. His first performance was at 8 years of age. Currently, he’s majoring in Piano at the University Conservatório Brasileiro de Música, and has frequently given concerts in famous theaters of Brazil.

Jonathan Duarte, Pianist, Canada/Costa Rica

Jonathan Duarte, Canadian/Costa Rican, was born in 1993 in Costa Rica.  He began piano performance studies at the Instituto Superior de Artes of Costa Rica in September 2007.  In 2009, he was accepted by the pre-college program of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma (UNA) of Costa Rica, under the direction of Dr. Alexandr Sklioutovski.  He has been a winner of four international piano competitions, including first place in the 2010 Stanislaw Moniuszko International Piano Competition of Slavic Music in Lithuania, the 2009 Interlochen Concerto Competition, second place in the 2009 Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition and the 2009 American Protégé International Piano and Strings Competition.  Also in 2009, he was awarded a scholarship to study at the Interlochen Arts Camp, and in April 2010, he received the Manuel Grynspan Burstyn award in Costa Rica.  Jonathan has been invited to present a recital at the Salle Pleyel in France at the end of this year.  He has also been invited to pursue further studies at the Central Music School for Child Prodigies of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow.  Prior performances have included Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Steinway Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, and Kosciuszko Foundation Auditorium, all in New York, and the Corson Auditorium, Michigan where he performed with the Interlochen Philharmonic.  He has performed as soloist at the National Theatre of Costa Rica, and various other centers in Costa Rica.  He currently resides in Costa Rica where he is finishing high school.

Josue Gonzales, Pianist, Costa Rica

Josue Gonzales was born in San Jose, Costa Rica in 1994.  His many accomplishments include: Winner of First Slav International piano competition Paris, France, Leschtizky Piano Competition, Bradshaw Buono, VII Festival Friends of Moscow of The Foundation of Vladimir Spivakov, and winner of national contests and playing with national and international orchestras. Mr Gonzales has been invited to play at Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall and at the Vladimir Horowitz competition Ukraine.  He has also played at the Glinka Museum and Nicolas Roerich Theater in Moscow, Russia.

Matthew Maimone, Pianist, New York

Matthew Maimone was born in 1994. In 2005, he was accepted into the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division at the age of 10, where he continues his studies with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol.  He has won awards in several competitions including the American Fine Arts Festival, the Golden Key Festival and the American Association for the Development of the Gifted and Talented’s International Young Musician’s Competition, and the Julia Crane International Piano Competition. In 2009, Matthew was a finalist in the Burgos International Music Festival Competition in Burgos, Spain and in the Forte Chamber Music Competition. He has performed in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, Steinway Hall, Wave Hill, and the National Arts Club as well as in solo and chamber performances at the Juilliard School.

Adi Neigauz, Pianist, Israel.

Adi Neigauz was born on May 7, 1996 in Tel-Aviv, Israel. He began to study music at the age of three, with his mother Irena Neigauz and later with his father Genrich Neigauz. In 2006 he received the third prize in the Israel Piano Competition in Ashdod. At March 2007 he played two concertos (Bach and Haydn) with the orchestra “Cantus Firmus” in Moscow, Russia. At the same year he received the International Scriabin Grant of the Scriabin Museum, Russia. At 2009 Adi received the Second Prize at the Israel Chopin Competition. Now he is a student of the Jerusalem Conservatory of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, where his teacher is Lea Agmon, the Artistic Director of the International Edward Aldwell Center.

Pablo Esquivel Noel, Pianist, Costa Rica

Pablo Esquivel Noel was born in Costa Rica in 1999. Pablo began his musical studies at 7 years old in San Jose in the Editus Academy.  Two months later, he was accepted to enter in the Institute Superior of Arts where he studied under the mentorship and supervision of Dr. Tamara Sklioutovskaia, Mrs Valentina Tumanova, Dr. Ludmila Meltzer and Dr. Alexandr Sklioutovski.  He has won several national and international competitions and has performed in many prestigious halls such as Carnegie Hall in New York, the Kosciusko Center in New York, the National Theater in Costa Rica and in France.  In November 2009 he became the youngest winner in the history of the Young Soloists competition in Costa Rica.  In November 2009, he played at the National Theater with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Chosey Komatsu.  In March 2010 he was invited by Oscar Arias, the President of Costa Rica, to give a recital.  This past March he was accepted into the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division and again he was invited by Oscar Arias, President of the Republic of Costa Rica, to give a recital at the last presidential dinner in May 2010.

Xin Tong, Pianist,

Xin Tong was honored by NY State in “Salute to the Arts” in 2001 and performed Bach’s Goldberg Variations in the young artist program on New York’s classical music radio station, WQXR.  Mr. Tong took the first prize in Woodmere Music Competition in New York and the Nordman Piano Competition at the Juilliard School. He also won prizes in the World Piano Competition in Cincinnati and Grace Welsh International Piano Competition in Chicago. He has worked with many prominent pianists such as Peter Serkin, Richard Goode, Andre-Michel Schub, Peter Frankl, Paul Schenly, and Yoheved Kaplinsky privately and in master classes. In chamber music, Mr. Tong has worked with members of the Guarneri Quartet, Shanghai Quartet, and Clarinetist David Krakauer. He attended PianoTexas in Fortworth, Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, Pianofest in East Hampton, and Eastern Music Festival in North Carolina, all on full scholarship. He performed with the EMF orchestra after winning its concerto competition.  Born in Xiangtan of Hunan province, China, Xin Tong started playing the piano at age six.  He went to Shanghai to study with the renowned composer and pianist, Xiaosheng Zhao.  At age sixteen, he came to the U.S. and attended the Pre-College of the Juilliard School of Music. There, he studied with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol.  He went on to attend Yale College on full scholarship and received a Bachelor of Science degree and an engineering prize upon graduation. Mr. Tong received his Master of Music degree on a full scholarship from the Juilliard School in New York studying with Matti Raekallio and Jerome Lowenthal.

Ke Ru Zhang, Pianist, China

Ke Ru Zhang was born in China in 1995.  She studied piano from the age of 4 and made her debut one year after.  She took part in many international and national piano competitions and won first prize from age 7.  In 2008, she entered the Middle School of the Central Conservatory of Music, with Professor, Zhang Jin.  She was invited to learn and perform in Germany and Singapore and she was invited to perform at the Bonn Beethoven Festival.  She was chosen to participate in the 13th and 14th anniversary of the Morningside Music Bridge.  She has received numerous awards which include, the Gold Medal for the Third International Piano Competition and in Germany the same year to participate in the finals in 2006.  She was a rising star of  the Asian Music Piano Competition Division China Gold and Singapore finalist of the first group where the jury unanimously recommended her for the Special Performance Award.  In 2008, Miss. Zhang was awarded Germany’s Beethoven's Fifth China National Youth Piano Festival Invitational Professional Group gold.

Qi Zhang, Pianist, China

Qi Zhang was born in Shanghai, China in 1992 and began playing the piano at the age of four. He was selected amongst thousands of applicants by the Junior Department of the Shanghai Music Conservatory at the age of nine. His daily routine included practicing six to eight hours each day in addition to his studies.  Qi entered the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division and has studied with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol since 2007.  In 2010, after graduating from the Professional Children's School, in New York City, and Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division, Qi was accepted by the Juilliard School under the teaching of Mr. Jerome Lowenthal.  For the past 14 years of piano studies, Qi has successfully won the Shanghai Young Peoples' Piano Competition, the China National Piano Competition, the Yamaha Asian Scholarship, and prized in the Julia Crane International Piano Competition & Festival in 2008.  In addition to his musical studies, Qi Zhang is also interested in sports and movies.

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