NEC Preparatory School piano students are invited to audition for biannual tours of European music capitals, led by Prep Piano Department Chair Marilyn Roth. Since 2006, NEC Prep Pianists have had the opportunity to audition for performing/learning tours to the great musical cities of Europe, and have taken students to Vienna, Salzburg, Prague, Budapest, Paris, and Nohant. These are visits to the places where the great pianist-composers lived, performed, and wrote their music. The tour participants will perform in these same places and have masterclasses with professors at great European music schools.
The tour is open to 10 to 12 advanced high school pianists, along with adult guests. In addition to lodging in hotels, tours will sometimes include home stays with the families of local music students, who will then make return visits to the Boston families the following year.
The 2016 tour, June 24th to July 3rd, went to Germany, beginning with a recital in the Liszt Gartenhaus in Weimar where the students performed on Liszt’s piano. Continuing to Leipzig, the students performed in the Schumannhaus museum, the first apartment in which Clara and Robert Schumann lived after they were married. While in Germany the students visited the Bach Museum in Eisenach, the Wartburg Castle, and the Buchenwald Memorial, before continuing to Berlin. Master classes were given by Christian Wilm Müller of the Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt Weimar, and Markus Tomas of the Hochschule für Musik und Theater <Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy> Leipzig.
With thanks to the piano faculty of NEC Prep who prepared the 2016 tour pianists — Samuel Adams, Jonathan Bass, Andrew Goodridge, Valentina Lass, Deborah Nemko, Marilyn Roth, A. Ramón Rivera, Marc Ryser, Elizabeth Skavish, and Clara Slater.
The group returned to Vienna, where they played in the Musikschule Margareten and the Haydnsaal in the Esterhazy Palace in Eisenstadt. Then on to Budapest, where they performed at the Bartók Conservatory, and had a masterclass with Gabor Eckhardt, who teaches at the Liszt Academy—just in time for the 2011 Liszt anniversary year.
The tour included a performance in Weimar, Germany, at the Musikschule Ottmar Gerster, and in Leipzig at the Schumann House. At the Mendelssohn House in Leipzig, the NEC students played in a masterclass given by Markus Tomás of the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Leipzig. The tour also included visits to Berlin and Prague.
NEC exchanged visits with students from the Musikschule Margareten in Vienna. The NEC student performed recitals in Vienna and at the Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt, where Haydn was once a member of the court.