UW piano students Tianhao Yao, Nicole Wang, Chiao-Yu Wu, Sandy Huang, and David Lin perform concerto works with special guest orchestra Philharmonia Northwest. Geoffrey Larson conducts.
Maurice Ravel: G major Concerto, Mvt 1
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Concerto No.1, Mvt 1
César Franck: Symphonic Variations
Camille Saint-Saëns: Concerto No.2, Mvt. 1
Maurice Ravel: G major concerto, Mvt. 1, 3
This concert is made possible through support from the Michiko Morita Miyamoto Professorships in Piano (currently held by Professors Robin McCabe and Craig Sheppard) at the University of Washington School of Music.
The Ravel Piano Concerto in G is performed by permission from Boosey and Hawkes, publisher.
American conductor Geoffrey Larson is the founding Music Director of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra. At home on both the symphonic and operatic stage, he serves as Assistant Conductor and Chorus Master of Berkshire Opera Festival. Geoffrey's adventurous, multi-genre projects have harnessed the storytelling power, rich variety, and universal relevance of orchestral and operatic music to engage new audiences.
In December 2021 Geoffrey was awarded second prize in the Concurso Internacional de Dirección de Orquesta in Almería, Spain, after competing with 126 conductors from 26 countries. He was also named a semifinalist in the Arthur Nikisch International Conducting Competition, a finalist in the Lanyí Conducting Competition, and one of three finalists for the Respighi Prize in Conducting. With a deep commitment to the music of our time, he has given the premieres of numerous works and has collaborated with composers such as Gabriel Prokofiev, Erberk Eryılmaz, Nancy Galbraith, Reza Vali, and Leonardo Balada.
Passionate about equity of access and increased inclusion in classical music, Geoffrey’s performances with the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra each feature works by composers from underrepresented groups, such as women and people of color.
Geoffrey is currently completing a doctoral thesis at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music under the mentorship of Arthur Fagen and Thomas Wilkins.
Philharmonia Northwest, one of Seattle’s finest chamber orchestras, is a vital part of the regional classical music scene. For more than four decades, the orchestra has presented lively performances of works ranging from the classics to world premieres and has featured many outstanding Northwest soloists. Its annual collaborations with Kirkland Choral Society have been a local mainstay for many years.
The orchestra is composed of dedicated and skilled musicians who contribute their time and talent to Philharmonia Northwest’s continuing success. Under the dynamic leadership of Music Director Julia Tai, the orchestra has strengthened its ties to the regional musical community by adding an Educational Outreach program, collaborating with many schools and local organizations, as well as establishing the Patrons for New Music, a group dedicated to commissioning new works for performance by the orchestra.
Philharmonia Northwest has performed at Town Hall Seattle and Shorecrest Performing Arts Center in the 2022-23 season. As well as presenting favorite classical works, the orchestra showcases new and rarely heard compositions. This year’s programs have included works written by women and composers of color. More information: PhilharmoniaNW.org.
Sandy Huang, age 19, currently majors in Piano Performance under Dr. Robin McCabe. Previously, she studied with international pianist Michi North. She has been the top prize winner in competitions including the Northwest Chopin Festival, Northwest Bach Festival, and more. At age 10, Sandy made her debut with the orchestra in Taipei playing the Mozart Piano Concerto, K. 466. In 2018, she performed the Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor with the UW Campus Philharmonic Orchestra as the UW High School Concerto Competition winner. In 2019, she played the Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 5 ‘Emperor’ with Taipei’s orchestra and the Evergreen Philharmonic Orchestra. She also won the Sammamish Symphony Orchestra Youth Concerto Competition and had the opportunity to perform the complete work of ‘Emperor’. Sandy was invited to attend the UW Seattle Piano Institute at age 9. In 2019, she was invited to perform at the UW Benefit Concert.
Pianist David Lin is an active soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. He began his piano studies at the age of six, and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance under Professor Craig Sheppard at the University of Washington. Recent performances include his solo recital in Brechemin Auditorium, where he premiered an original composition, and a concert with the UW Symphony Orchestra as a collaborative pianist. In 2021, David took second place in the keyboard division of the UW School of Music Concerto Competition. Within academia, David’s interests cross disciplines between the arts and sciences, as his research is focused on music as an application for scientific communication. As a native of the Pacific Northwest, he aims to make education about complex environmental issues accessible to wider audiences, and fortify our connection with the natural and built environments we live in.
Nicole Wang is an undergraduate freshman majoring in computer engineering at the University of Washington. She began piano lessons at the age of five, and has previously studied with Joanne Lu, Tatiana Lanford, and Nino Merabishvili. She now studies with Professor Craig Sheppard at the UW School of Music. Nicole has won top awards in various local and state competitions, such as the Washington MTNA State Competition, Performing Arts Festival of the Eastside, and the Chopin NW Competition. She has also performed with the Virtuosi Brunensis Orchestra, Bellevue Symphony, Cascade Symphony, and most recently, the Evergreen Philharmonic. Besides piano, Nicole plays the cello, and she teaches both instruments outside of schoolwork. She is also involved in chamber music. Last year, her trio won the third prize at the WMEA State Solo and Ensemble competition (small string ensemble category). In her free time, Nicole enjoys hiking, traveling, and eating good food.
Taiwanese pianist Chiao-Yu Wu is in her second year of Doctor of Musical Art in Piano Performance at the University of Washington, under the tutelage of Robin McCabe. She received her Undergraduate degree from Royal Academy of Music and Master degree from the University of Michigan School of Music. Her accomplishments include prizes in the Taiwan 2nd International Classical and Traditional Music Awards (2018), the 4th Annual Camerata Concerto Competition (2017), and the Delius Prize of the Royal Academy of Music (2015). In 2017, she performed Grieg’s Piano Concerto with the Ann Arbor Camerata Orchestra. She loves sharing the beauty of music with others. Apart from playing in the great venues, such as the Beijing Steinway Concert Hall and Kaufman Music Center in New York City, she enjoys performing in senior living houses, hospitals, and churches. Outside of music, she loves visiting museums, watching ballet, doing yoga, and playing sudoku. Her future plan is to learn how to ski.
Tianhao Yao was born and raised in Beijing, China, where he discovered his passion for the piano at the age of five. Currently, he is a senior at the University of Washington where he is pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Geography Data Science. This is Tianhao's second year at UW studying piano under Dr. Cristina Valdes, where he has performed in several recitals, including the Brechemin Piano Series. Upon graduation, he aims to balance his passion for music and technology by pursuing a career as a software engineer while continuing to improve his piano technique and broaden his musical repertoire. Tianhao is thrilled to be giving his debut concerto performance tonight in collaboration with Philharmonia Northwest.