Welcome to PianoSummer at New Paltz
Now in its 21st year, PianoSummer is an international summer institute and festival dedicated solely to piano music. It features an integrated approach to learning and performance under the artistic direction of master pianist and teacher Vladimir Feltsman. Gifted students from around the world join with devoted musicians and teachers to learn more about the art of the piano and, ultimately, more about themselves and their place in the world of music.
Develop multi-dimensional perspectives
The members of the Institute faculty bring many special qualities to the program besides artistic excellence: different performing traditions, diverse ideologies, and varied cultures. Daily lessons with members of this distinguished group of teachers help students to develop deeper insights into the repertoire. This unique style of instruction encourages individual interpretation as well as artistic mastery.
Perform for a discerning audience
In addition to private lessons with each instructor, there are master classes, lectures and demonstrations, student recitals, and festival concerts. All events are open to the public, so students learn how to perform in front of an appreciative and discriminating audience. They also learn how to present themselves in a professional context.
Compete to play in the Festival Symphony Gala
The Jacob Flier Piano Competition was established to honor this distinguished Russian pianist who taught for many years at the Moscow Conservatory and who brought up generations of prominent musicians including Vladimir Feltsman. The winner performs a piano concerto with the Hudson Valley Philharmonic conducted by Maestro Feltsman in the Symphony Gala, which concludes the three-week program.
The Jacob Flier Piano Competition
The competition is open to all students under the age of 35. The winner will perform with the Hudson Valley Philharmonic orchestra during the Symphony Gala. The second and third-place winners share a recital. In addition, all three winners receive scholarships to attend the following year’s PianoSummer Institute.
Participants will be required to play:
J.S. Bach: One prelude and fugue from The Well Tempered Clavier and two major works of different composers and style.
Any concerto by one of the following composers (accompanist will be provided): Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schumann, Liszt, Chopin, Grieg, Barber; or one of the following: Mendelssohn G minor; Saint-Saens No. 2; Franck Symphonic Variations; Tchaikovsky No. 1; Rachmaninoff No. 1, No. 2 or Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini; Prokofiev No. 1 or No. 3; MacDowell No. 2; Gershwin Concerto or Rhapsody in Blue; Shostakovich No. 1 or No. 2.
Located in the heart of the Hudson Valley, 90 miles north of New York City, PianoSummer at New Paltz offers a full range of recreational activities on and off campus, including trips to Steinway Hall in New York City.
PianoSummer looks to the future
PianoSummer is a program of the School of Fine & Performing Arts at the State University of New York at New Paltz. To fund PianoSummer, the university has established an endowment to support its superior program for young pianists. The university depends on the generous contributions of friends to help develop and sustain PianoSummer’s Institute and Festival. As Vladimir Feltsman says, “The endowment will allow us to select pianists on the ability to play—not the ability to pay.”
“It is PianoSummer at New Paltz, where one can hear a cross-section of young American and international piano talent, shepherded by the Russian-American pianist and teacher Vladimir Feltsman and the team of his demanding colleagues. The students go through a learning and performing experience, which, quite literally, can change their musical philosophy, and even their lives.”
- Harold C. Schonberg, Musicologist
Former Chief Music Critic for The New York Times