PACMI 2016 Piano Competition for Master Class Participation


Introducing Julian Martin for our 2nd Master Class; it was as though he was in the room with us! (Click to enlarge).

Earlier this week I let people know about our exciting upcoming Master Class that will be conducted via an amazing technology called Yamaha Remote Lesson, a technology which involves two similarly equipped acoustic pianos which are in different locations, often separated by thousands of miles. As you probably know by now, Yamaha is providing us a concert grand CFX piano ( that will enable us to have a Remote Lesson with a Juilliard piano faculty member, Julian Martin ( Please understand he will not be here with us but rather he will be in New York City conducting the master class from there!

While selected students perform on the piano in our concert hall, he will hear an exact duplication of your performance in New York City on a similar piano; then anything he does on his piano we will hear and see as though a ghost is performing right before our very eyes! In addition to the two pianos involved, there will be video and audio feed, all of which is very complicated to set up. As a result, Yamaha is also flying in for our event a person who will help ensure that everything is set up correctly.

We are very excited about being able to offer this opportunity to students attending PACMI. However, in a Master Class we could not begin to have all students attending our program perform in that class. Instead, we will have to find a way to select students appropriate to the class.

As a result, we are announcing a competition to be held the first evening of PACMI, Monday, June 6, in Brock Hall. This will also be open to parents, friends, family and the public. I have found an outside, highly experienced & qualified judge who will listen to all interested students and then select whatever number of students Julian Martin may wish to have in the master class (and that will probably be three or four students). I encourage all interested students who feel excited about this possibility plan to play one piece for our guest judge on that Monday evening, June 6; the time for this event is tentatively set for 6 PM.

I did not want any of us teaching in our program to make these selections because we have our obvious favorites and prejudices! So an outside judge makes the most sense and hopefully this individual will not know any of you going into this event.

Please let me know ( ASAP of your intent to be in that “competition;” I encourage as many of you as possible to consider doing this! Please also let me know the one piece you will perform on Monday, June 6, and be sure to provide the score for the judge.

Please also remember that at the end of the week we will be making, as we did last year, some scholarship awards. These awards are made possible by the generosity of Mary Anne and Michael J. Freeman and the Birmingham Chamber Music Society. The Freemans and representatives of the Chamber Music Society voluntarily elected to award us some significant scholarship money last summer and we are so appreciative of their support of our program!