Summer Piano Institute

As part of NEC's evolving response to the COVID-19 outbreak, NEC's campus is closed for on-campus events through August 31. Therefore, Summer Piano Institute will be postponed until summer 2021.

Instructor: Aimee Tsuchiya

Full-Day Registration includes: access to private lessons, coached ensembles, independent practice time, masterclasses and lecture recitals. 

Half-Day (evenings only) Registration includes: access to nightly masterclasses and lecture recitals. 

Join us for a week-long piano intensive! The SCE Summer Piano Institute offers adult pianists of all ages and levels the chance to immerse themselves for a week in full-day offerings of practice, performance and topical seminars, workshops and recitals.  Participants will spend each afternoon alternating between private lessons, piano duo rehearsals and coachings, and independent practice time. Following dinner, evenings will include masterclasses presented by guest and SCE faculty, during which participants will perform their chosen repertoire for both the guest faculty and an audience of piano institute participants. Performers will receive in-depth instruction and advice at a high level of musicianship to further refine and inform their performances.  Audience class members can draw ideas of interpretation and execution for their own edification on a broad range of works and from a diverse artistic community. Audience participation in the form of Q&A is encouraged!

Evenings will also include daily topical offerings presented by our faculty. Offerings may include a seminar on a specific composer, a lecture-recital by guest piano faculty, a workshop on practice tips and techniques, and a performance readiness workshop.  Our last evening will be a final concert presented by participants on the solo and/or duo repertoire refined over the course of the institute. 

Full-day registration gains students access to private lessons, coached ensembles and independent practice time in addition to the evening masterclasses, lectures and faculty recitals.

Half-day (evening only) registration is available for those who are only interested in the evening masterclasses, lectures and faculty recitals.


Institute Faculty

Heeyeon Chi
Lilit Karapetian
Fredericka King
Bianca Oglice
Konstantinos Papadakis
Marc Ryser
Yukiko Sekino
Mana Tokuno
Aimee Tsuchiya
Kyra Xuerong Zhao


Daily Schedule (subject to slight changes)

2:00-5:00 Private Lessons and Piano Duo Rehearsals (hourly)
5:00 Dinner Break
6:15 Daily Musical Offering
7:30 Masterclass/ Final recital (Friday)
9:00 Finish


Nightly Workshops and Masterclasses, 6:00-7:15pm

Monday Aug 12: Yukiko Sekino — Chopin etudes

Chopin’s Etudes, Op. 10 and Op. 25 occupy an important place in the pianist’s repertoire.  In this lecture recital, pianist Yukiko Sekino will discuss the historical context and musical and technical elements of Chopin’s Op. 10 and Op. 25 etudes.  Topics will include the idea of virtuosity and the development of the piano etude as a genre, Chopin’s performance style and pianos of the time, and a discussion of musical and technical questions and challenges that arise when working on the Chopin etudes.  She will end the lecture with a performance of selected etudes and other short pieces by Chopin.

Tuesday Aug 13: Marc Ryser — Meta-Practicing: Liberating practice from method

Many students have a tendency to think of practicing as applying a limited number of methods to pieces and passages, without careful consideration to what actions will most likely lead to constructive change in playing. Students will be invited to present "problem passages" which have stymied their efforts. We will use this material to examine the various ways the mind tricks itself out of good practicing, and discuss how mindfulness -  the function of keeping one's immediate goal in mind - is crucial to shaping effective practice sessions.

Wednesday Aug 14: Eli Epstein — Optimal Performance Workshop

This workshop will address issues that all performing artists face. We will cover natural responses to stress, dealing with fear, building courage, harnessing the mind, and recovering from mistakes. The workshop will be presented in a conversational format. At several points, students will be asked to participate in focused journaling, relaxation and centering routines and mental rehearsal. Participants will come away from the workshop with a deeper understanding of the factors involved in optimal performance, and a toolkit of new ideas to try and behaviors to practice. Participants should bring a notebook and pen or pencil for journaling.

Thursday Aug 15: Fredericka King — "Step into My Parlor and Meet the Piano:” The Piano in America and Music of American Composers.

For a good part of the 19th & 20th century the piano was the jewel in the parlor - later the living room - of the family home. How did this come about and how have things changed for our beloved pianos? Fredericka King’s program will trace the piano’s journey from Europe to early days in American life, introduce famous piano makers of the 19th century such as Chickering and Sons of Boston and Steinway and Sons of New York, and explore how the piano was transformed from Classical icon to mainstay of popular music.
Featuring music by American composers including Louis Moreau Gottschalk, Amy Beach, George Gershwin, Margaret Bonds, and George Walker.

Friday Aug 16: Mana Tokuno — Bach at the Keyboard

Bach was not only a great keyboard virtuoso and brilliant composer, but also a wonderful pedagogue, catering for each student’s technical and personal development and helping them expand their musical imagination and tastes.  In this lecture-recital, based on Bach’s teaching philosophy, we will discuss the issues dealing with a modern piano in our time, such as articulation, ornamentation, dynamics, and pedaling, and explore further possibilities of studying and performing Bach’s keyboard music.  The instructor will perform all 15 Two-Part Inventions.