Wednesday, April 4, 2018 Awadagin Pratt-inspired piano festival returns for eighth year

Awadagin Pratt, seen here with Soyeon Kate Lee, are faculty artists at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Cincinnati Business Courier

By  – Managing editor, Cincinnati Business Courier
Dozens of aspiring concert pianists will again descend upon Cincinnati this spring for an international showcase of classical music.

The Art of the Piano Festival is presented by Awadagin Pratt, professor of piano and an artist-in-residence at the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music. The festival, in its eighth year, spans 22 days – May 26-June 16 – at Werner Recital Hall at CCM. More than two dozen aspiring concert pianists from around the world will listen, learn and play alongside 15 of the world’s top soloists, composers and faculty.

The festival features a full roster of recitals, nine concerts and unprecedented access to intimate master classes. This year’s artist-faculty include Leon Fleisher, Sergei Babayan, Francesco Libetta, Olga Kern, Simone Dinnerstein and Vladimir Feltsman, whose piano concerts sell out around the world.

Pratt burst onto the global classical music stage in 1992 when he became the first African-American pianist to win the prestigious Naumburg International Piano Competition. Since then, Pratt has played at the White House and Carnegie Hall, on “Sesame Street” and with nearly every major orchestra in the U.S.

Pratt launched the festival eight years ago as a way to nurture young artists and connect them with top international pianists in both individual and group settings. 

“During the Art of the Piano, students have opportunities they can’t access anywhere else,” Pratt said in a statement. 

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