2016 2-round Competitors

Round 1 – all the 2-round competitors will play for approximately 12 minutes

Round 2 (Final Round) – 12 pianists will be chosen to compete (play for approximately 15 minutes) for 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize

BetitaBernadettaBWphotoBernadette Betita, Chicago, IL.

Bernadette took piano lessons once a week from grade 1 through 12.   She didn’t appreciate the weekly lessons and practicing while growing up but she certainly appreciates it now!  She recently upgraded her Roland EP-9 to a Roland RP-400 and has been practicing more and more ever since.

Having grown up in a suburb of Akron, Ohio called Stow she is the youngest of four children in her family.  At holidays and family gatherings, she loves to play for her family.  Her brother always requests her to play classical music repertoire as well as Meatloaf, Cat Stevens, and Warren Zevon, which for her is just as enjoyable!

She attended college at DePaul University, obtained an Accounting degree and has worked as a corporate tax accountant for over 20 years.  Her artistic daydream is to play in a large auditorium in front of a huge crowd on an amazing grand piano. (As an accountant, she has this daydream at least once a day.)

Her hobbies include enjoying new restaurants, taking dance classes, playing chess and Scrabble.  Her 7-year-old daughter Kira has just begun piano lessons. Hearing her play Wigwam and other songs in the red John Thompson book absolutely melts her heart.  Bernadette now sees why her parents kept encouraging her to play and learn to read music while growing up and for that she is forever appreciative.

Round-1 – 9.5 min

Beethoven, Sonata, Opus 49, No. 2, 1st Movement, 3 min

Chopin, Nocturne, Opus 9, No. 1, 3.5 min

Rachmaninoff, Polichinelle, Op. 3, No 4, 3.25 min

Round-2 – 10 min

Chopin, Nocturne, Op. 72, No. 1, 3.25 min

Debussy, Arabesque, No. 1, 3 min

Schumann, Fantasiestucke, Op 12, 3.5 min

ClaireBoedtsBWPhotoClaire Boedts, Lille, France.

Claire Boedts spent her childhood in the Belgian Flanders and went to school in Brussels. She then decided to go to France for her University studies in Literature and Musicology and decided to settle there permanently. She is an amateur pianist and a qualified music teacher.  She also opened a bookstore called Champs de Signes (Fields of signs) which is entirely dedicated to art and psychoanalysis. She sees painting as an act of emancipation and a trial of truth. Her paintings have already been exhibited in Belgium, the north of France and in Paris. Claire Boedts grew up in Flanders, Belgium, and went to school in Bruxelles. After her university studies in literature and music she moves to France to establish herself permanently. First an amateur pianist and with a degree as a music teacher, she opens a bookstore dedicated to art and psychoanalysis. She tries herself at painting, a challenge for emancipation and truth. Now her paintings are shown in Belgium, northern France and in Paris.

Round-1 – 11.25 min

Bach, Capriccio Partita 2 – 3.5 mins

Schumann, Arabesk – 7.75 mins

Round-2 – 15 min

Andante de la sonate 15 RE Majeur opus 28 de Beethoven – 6-7 min

Arabesk opus 18 de Schumann – 6-7 min



Chungte Cheng, San Francisco, CA

He was born in Taiwan and began taking piano lessons at a young age.  His musical pursuits continued after his family immigrated to the United States and through his early twenties  he resumed taking piano lessons about 10 years ago, after a long hiatus.  Since then, he has enjoyed participating in amateur musician events and workshops in California, Maine, Seattle, as well as abroad in Canada and England.  He is currently working at a federal agency as a program analyst.

Round-1 – 12 min

Bach French Suite No. 2 Sarabande – 3 min
Bach French Suite No. 2 Courante – 2.5 min

Chopin Nocturne Opus 9 No. 3 in B Major – 6.5 min

Round-2 – 13 min

Debussy Etude No. 11 “Pour Les Arpeges Composes” – 5.5 min

Haydn Sonata XVI-46 Finale – 3.5 min
Chopin Prelude Opus 28 No. 13, F-Sharp Major – 3 min

Chopin Prelude Opus 28 No. 22, G Minor – 1 min



Judy Darst, Bend, OR

Judy Darst is a retired piano teacher with a Degree in Piano Performance (BMA) from U. of Colorado.  Formerly and teacher and adjudicator with MTNA and National Guild of Piano Teachers, she has performed as a soloist with the Greeley Philharmonic and the Bainbridge Island Orchestra.  She was a performing member of Ladies Musical Club in Seattle.

Round-1 – 11.20 min

Rachmaninoff Prelude, Opus 32, No 5 – 3.5 min

Chopin etude Opus 25 No.1- 3 min

Respighi Sicilienne fr. Ancient Airs and Dances – 3.5 min

Round-2 – 13.5 min

Schumann Romance F# Opus 28 – 3.75 min

Chopin Prelude Opus 45 – 6.25 min

Chopin Prelude Op – 28 A flat #17 – 3.5 min



Tyler Dennison, Gilbert, AZ

Tyler has been playing the piano since he was 4 and has not had a piano lesson in 22 years. He has been married for 17 years and has 4 children. Tyler is a Physician Assistant by trade and loves medicine almost as much as he enjoys playing the piano. Other interests include wood working, sports, and cooking. He is partial to the Romantic era, specifically Chopin, Liszt and Rachmaninoff.

Round-1 – 11.5 min

Chopin – Grand Valse Brillante Op 18 – 4.5 min

Rachmaninoff Prelude Opus 23, No. 5 – 3.5 min

Tchaikovsky – Nutcracker Snow Pas De Deux – 4.5

Round-2 – 16 min

Chopin Ballade No 4 – 11 min

Alfred Grunfeld Soire de Vienne Opus 56 (Strauss) – 5 min


MarinaFishBWPhotoMarina Fish, Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada

Marina Fish began piano lessons at age eight. After a 15year hiatus from playing, she returned to the piano as an adult student.   She continues to participate in Masterclasses when available, and belongs to two piano recital groups which foster the love of piano performance.  Marina participated in the Boston International Piano Competition for Amateurs in 2013 where she came home with new knowledge and insight.  She is currently employed as a Grief Counsellor at the Hospice in her community (Kamloops, BC, Canada). She is enthralled with classical piano and take great joy in practicing when time permits!  The list of repertoire she would love to learn keeps growing, so I do pray for longevity and minimal arthritis!

As for hobbies, she enjoys hiking with her husband and the family dog and reading a good book and cooking for my family and friends!  Dreams?  Well….it would be phenomenal to perform Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 3 with a world class orchestra, no?!!!!  But if that dream falls through, she would settle for a biking trip throughout France whilst eating all the cheeses and baguettes the country has to offer!

Round-1 – 12 min

Brahms, Rhapsody Opus 79, No. 1 –  8 min

Rachmaninoff, Etudes-Tableaux, Opus 33, No.3 – 4 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Chopin – Nocturne Opus 48 No. 1
Ginestera – Piano Sonata No. 1  First Movement
Scriabin –  Prelude Opus 11 No. 21

JaimeBWPhotoJaime Frias, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.

Jaime has enjoyed playing music since his childhood in Concepción, Chile then Gainesville, Florida, focusing on piano and guitar as well as singing and composing.  He studied piano at the University of Florida, receiving a Bachelor of Music degree and Performer’s Certificate in 1983, then received his law degree in 1988 from the University of Michigan.  Jaime began his law career in New York City then relocated to Florida where he currently maintains a solo law practice and is grateful to have the opportunity to dedicate time to his passion, music.  He has two children, a son entering his final year of college and a 6-year-old daughter, each of whom love music.  He enjoys volunteering in his community in the areas of music and the arts, mentoring young musicians, and playing tennis and golf.

Round-1 – 10 min

Bach, Prelude in A-Minor, English Suite No. 2 – 5 min

Chopin, Fantasie Impromptu, C#-Minor, Opus 66 (Post) – 5 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Beethoven, Sonata No. 27, Opus 2 – 15 min

MonicaHartBWPhotoMonica Hart, Downers Grove, IL.

Monica works as an administrative assistant and receptionist for a high-end executive search firm in downtown Chicago.  She studied flute and piano while growing up and holds a bachelors’ degree in business.  She wishes she had time to learn how to play her guitar better, and still plays her flute occasionally.  But playing piano has always been her main passion.  Currently, she practices whenever she can and enjoys making home recordings and YouTube videos.

Like most everyone else entering a piano competition, she had been playing piano and taking lessons for a long time.  But she never entered any kind of piano competition until she was an adult.  And she probably still would never have entered a competition, except for the fact that the first Chicago Amateur Piano Competition began in 2010.  she was very glad because she had always wondered what it was like to be in a piano competition, and if she entered (and got accepted), then she could finally get that experience.

Round-1 – 12 min

Mompou, selections from “Variations on a Theme by Chopin” – 12 min

Round-2 – 14.5 min

Billy Joel, Invention in C minor, Opus 6, – 1 min

Bach, French Suite No. 5 in G Major, BWV 816 (without repeats) – 10 min

Debussy, “La plus que lente” – 4:30 min


MarieItoBWPhotoMarie Ito, New York, NY

A Japanese native, Mari Ito obtained BA and MA in architecture and holds a first class license in Japan. She practiced architectural design in her own firm for years in Sapporo, Japan and currently works at Stonehill & Taylor Architects in NYC for high-end hotel design/engineering such as Peninsula NY, Hyatt House, Intercontinental Barclay and Hilton Atlanta Downtown. Inspired by the high cultural environment of NYC, she resumed piano playing in 2010, enrolling in Juilliard School evening division.

Round-1 – 11.5 min

Shostakovich, Prelude and Fugue in G major, Opus 87 – 5 min

Chopin, Nocturne in C minor, Opus 48-1 – 6.5 min

Round-2 – 14 min

Bach, Italian Concerto in F major, BWV 971 – 14 min

RichardIzattBWPhotoRichard Izatt, Madison, AL

Richard Izatt is a retired software engineer. He studied the piano from first grade through the second year of college and participated in a New England Conservatory of Music piano competition when he was 16. He has frequently accompanied church music on the piano during his lifetime and was a church choir director for 15 years. He is currently living his dream of being able to practice the piano almost as much as he wants.


Round-1 – 12 min

Bach WTC-1 Prelude No. 10 in E Minor – 2 min

Beethoven Sonata No. 3 in C Major, Opus 2 No. 3, Allegro con brio – 10 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Bach WTC-1 Fugue No. 10 in E Minor – 1.5 minutes

Beethoven Sonata No. 3 in C Major, Opus 2 No. 3, Adagio – 6 min

Beethoven Sonata No. 3 in C Major, Op. 2 No. 3, Assai Allegro – 7.5 min



Shoko Kiyohara, Arlington, VA

Shoko began playing the piano when she was four in Japan. While she is a visiting researcher and doing research on the presidential election campaigns at Georgetown University, she has also taken piano lessons with Ms. Lura Johnson. She also joined the Chamber Music Class at Georgetown University, working with Ms. Grace Kim to perform as piano duo at the concert. She also enjoys playing the piano at Georgetown Lutheran Church.

Round-1 – 9.4 min

Mozart Piano Sonata, K.330 1st movement -5 min

Chopin, Nocturne, Opus 72 No.1- 4.4 min

Round-2 – 14 min

Beethoven, Piano Sonata, Opus 14 No.2, 1st movement-5.5 min

Brahms, Drei Intermezzi, Op.117 No.1 and 2 – 8.5 min


KongBWPhotoSin Yi Kong, Chicago, IL

Born in Malaysia, Sin Yi moved to Chicago for college and graduate studies. She has always enjoyed playing the piano at the age of five. Since completing her PhD in immunology a year ago, Sin Yi rediscovered her love for classical music and is excited about her first public performance. Besides playing the piano, Sin Yi enjoys reading science fiction and trying out new recipes in her apartment.  Playing in the CAPC will also be her first experience playing in public, despite many years of playing the piano. She hopes that through CAPC, She will be able to challenge my fear of public performance, and enrich her musical life in new ways.

Round-1 – 11 min

Haydn Sonata No. 53 in E minor, Mov I, Presto – 3 min

Debussy, Preludes Book I, No. 5, Les collines d’Anacapri – 3 min

Liszt, Trois etudes de concert, No. 3, Un sospiro – 5 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Scarlatti, Sonata in G major, K.427 – 3 min

Chopin, Ballade no. 3 Opus 47, 7 min

Prokofiev Tocatta in D minor Opus 11 – 5 min or

Debussy Estampes 1. Pagodes – 5 min

KateLoBWPhotoKate Lo, Austin, TX

Kate was born and raised in Taiwan.  She then came to Texas for graduate school and stayed for over half of her life.  Although she earned science degrees and work as an engineer, Kate’s heart still lies with music and playing piano, and she enjoys challenging myself with a varying repertoire.  Life without music would B!



Round-1 – 10 min

Haydn, Sonata in E-minor Hob No.34., Mov. 1 – 3.5 min

Benjamin Lees, Fantasia – 6.5 min

Round-2 – 10 min

Scarlatti, Sonata in E Minor K263 – 4 min

Faschingsschwank aus Wien, Op.26 V. Finale

Photo(Noroko Masuhiro)BWNoriko Masuhiro, Hiroshima, Japan

Noriko is a government employee of Hiroshima Prefectural Office who was born and grew up in Hiroshima-City Japan. She started learning to play the piano when she was 5 years old and stopped at 19 years old.  She then restarted to play the piano at 40 years old.  She like Mompou, Rodrigo (Spain), Liszt (Hungary), Messiaen (France), Chopin (Poland) and so on. Also in Japan there are many composers, especially she likes Kosaku Yamada.


Round-1 – 12 min

Yamada Kosaku,Les petit-poèmes No.10b – 1minute

Yamada Kosaku, Poemes2 Der junge Zentauer No.3 – 1min

Liszt, Consolations S.172 R12 No.3 – 4min

Mompou, Prelude No.7 – 3min

Mompou, Paisajes Ⅱ El lago – 3min

Round-2 – 15 min

Messiaen, Vingt regards sur l’enfant Jésus  II Regard de l’étoile – 3min

Yoshimatsu, Pleiades Dances V op.51  Ⅵ Noel in Midnight – 2min

Rodrigo Joaquin, 3 Evocaciones Ⅲ Night of the Guadalquivir –  4min

Chopin, Nocturne op.9-1  – 6 min

FrancaMorazzoniBWFranca Morazzoni, Milano, Italy

Born in Milano, Italy, where she graduated with a PhD in Chemistry, Franca applied herself in research and teaching since 1970 at the State University of Milano.  She is the author of more than 200 publications in materials chemistry. Starting in April 2016 she will coordinate the music optional courses for the students of bachelor and master degree of all Faculties.


Round-1 – 11 min

Mozart Sonata K330, 2nd Mov. – 5.5 min

Chopin Berceuse Opus 57 – 5.5 min

Round-2 – 14.5 min

Beethoven, Bagatelle Opus 126, No.1 – 3.5 min

Chopin Ballade op 23 n.2, 11 minutes.

MelindaMorseBWMelinda Morse, San Ramon, CA

A native of rural Arkansas, Melinda grew up within a community of music making. After receiving a B.A. from Hendrix College, she received a M.M. from Memphis State University, studying piano during the summers while teaching.  Completing 37 years in public school instruction, she taught general music, sixth grade science and achieved National Board Certification in math. Her interests include running on a racing team, participating in civic and church events as well as enjoying friends and family (including two grandchildren under age two.) Melinda was a semi-finalist in Chicago and Washington D.C. amateur competitions and participated in the first Van Cliburn amateur video competition (which was her first piano competition.) She is pleased to share that her grandmother taught piano and voice in the Cherokee Female Seminary in the early 1900’s.

Round-1 – 10.5 min

Hindemith, Ludus Tonalis, Fuga No. 2 in G-Major – 2.2 min

Ravel, Miroirs Ste., Alborado del Gracioso – 8 min

Round-2 – 7 min

Scriabin, Etude No 9 in E-major, Opus 11 – 1.5 min.

Chopin Berceuse in D-flat, Opus 57 – 5.5 min

TimothyPatenodeBWPhotoTimothy Patenode, Evanston, IL

Tim is a devoted amateur pianist, performing regularly with amateur groups and at his church. Falling in love with the piano as a young child when he heard his mother play, he took lessons from the age of eight until thirteen and returned to it as an adult. He has also played electric bass and guitar in rock, jazz and orchestral settings, sung with church and school choirs, and suffered through several years as a clarinetist.  By day, Tim is a lawyer.


Round-1 – 11 min

Mendelssohn, Lieder Ohme Warte, Opus 19 No. 5 – 5.5 min

DeBussy, Suite Bergemesque, Prelude – 5.5 min

Round-2 – 9.5 min

Schubert Impromptu Opus 90, No. 1 – 9.5 min

Shostokovich, Op. 34, Nos. 6, 7, 8, and 9 – 5.5 min

HyejoongRyuBWPhotoHyejoong Ryu, Jersey City, NJ

Although music has been always a critical part of her life mostly in the form of listening, the actuality of playing a piano on a regular basis came a couple of months ago after she adopted a spinet piano on January 11, 2016. It took her three decades to obtain such an opportunity. i.e. Since she was 16 years old.  Ryu’s music education has three separate time periods. The very first piano lesson was for few months in a local children’s piano school in 1969. From 1974 to 1975 in another local piano school and from March 1976 to December 1979 with regular lessons from a professional piano teacher.

Since attending university, the visual art and art history had been a dominant factor in her life including having taught art about a decade in Korea and working as a freelance graphic designer for 3 years after graduating the 2nd M.F.A course in SVA in NYC. The irony of the present reality working as a security officer in New York City is that her current occupation, the total opposition of  academically studied art and music, has been the actual motivation to re-pursue the music and even encourage her to apply for the competition, for the first time in her life.

Life without music and art is inconceivable. Besides the love of music, since 2015 as a member of NYRR-New York Road Runner Club- running an official race has become a good friend including finishing 5 half marathons. And if time allowed, learning a Turkish language has been another incomprehensible yet not achievable passion since 2009.

Hyejoong perceives the competition as a self-competitive event and is deeply grateful to have this opportunity to continuously challenge herself and hope to practice more to expand more repertoires year by year.

1st round; 13.5 min

Chopin, Grande Valse Brillante Opus 18 – 5 min

Chopin, Nocturne Opus 2 – 4.5 min

Mozart, Sonata in G, KV 283, 1st Mov, Allegro – 4 min

2nd round; 12.5 min

Chopin, Valse Opus 64 Nr. 1, Molto vivace – 2 min

Chopin, Valse Opus 64 Nr. 2, Tempo giusto – 4.5 min

Chopin, Valse Opus post. 69 Nr. 1, Lento – 4 min

Chopin, Valse, KK IVb Nr. 11, Allegretto – 2 min

KathrynShoenbrodBWPhotoKathryn Schoenbrod, Highland Park, IL

Too immature for music as a child, Kathryn started studying seriously at 60.  Eight years in childhood, lacking in discipline, technique, and theory, and six years in middle age with someone who accepted her flaws, left her with “demons”.  Now 66, she has studied six years with Milana Pavchinskaya, an extraordinary teacher who has been generous in spirit, attention, and time, affording her hope.  She also studies ballet.  “By day”, she is a psychiatrist.


Round-1 – 9 min

Bach, Partita IV, Allemande – 4 min (no repeats)

Rachmaninoff, Prelude, Opud 23, No. 4 – 5 min

Round-2 – 13 min

Chopin, Mazurka, Opus 17, No. 2 – 2 min

Chopin, Etude, Opus 10, No. 6 – 3 min

Albeniz, Cordoba, Opus 232, No. 4 of Cantos de Espana – 6 min

Scriabin, Preludes, Opus11, No. 2 – 2 min

RobertSeepyBWphotoRobert Seppy, Philadelphia, PA

Robert Seppy is a manager for a Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia.  He began studing the piano at the age of nine.  He attended The Peabody Conservatory and The Philadelphia College of the Performing Arts.  He was a student of Susan Starr (1962 Silver Medalist-Tchaikovsky Competition).  He won first prize in the 2011 Music Minus One Video Contest.  Robert enjoys accompanying his wife Kelly at church.  Currently he studies with classical recording artist, Josh Wright.


Round-1 – 8.75 min

Bach: Ich ruf’zu dir, HerrJesu Christ Chorale Prelude,BWV639, (Transcribed: Ferruccio Busoni) – 3.5 min

Beethoven: Sonata No. 18, Opus 31, No. 3 – II movement (Scherzo – Allegretto Vivace) 5.25 min

Round-2 – 14.75 min

Chopin:  Ballade No. 3, Opus 47 in A-Flat – 7.5 min

Rachmaninoff:  Prelude in G-Minor, Opus 23, No. 5 – 4.25 min

Chopin:  Etude, Opus 10, No. 12 (Revolutionary) – 3 min

RonSetiawanBWPhotoRon Setiawan, Hoffman Estates, IL

Ron’s piano journey started 9 years ago. One day, during a lunch break, he happened to find a YouTube video of another amateur piano competition. It really excited him, and he then decided to learn to play piano.  The learning process was not easy and often times very frustrating. But one thing that keeps him going is that he has the goals provided when on enters amateur competitions and to play better year after year.  Ron is the founder of the Chicago Amateur Pianist Guild which encourages amateur pianists throughout the Chicago area to come and perform.

Round-1 – 9.5 min

Scarlatti, Sonata in B-minor K87 – 3.5 min

Mozart, Sonata in C Major K330, 1st Movement – 6 min

Round-2 – 14 min            

Mozart, Sonata in C Major K330, 2nd Movement – 6 min

Beethoven, Sonata in C-Minor ‘Pathetique’ 3rd Movement – 4 min

Chopin, Waltz, Opus 64, No. 2, C# Minor – 4.75 min

UnStrodaBWPhotoUna Stroda, Chicago, IL

Una Stroda was born in Latvia, and came to the US in 2004 to pursue graduate and postgraduate studies in theology.  Her education includes BA in Piano Performance and Accompaniment from Latvia Academy of Music, and a BA and MA in Theology from University of Latvia.  In May she graduated from Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago with PhD in Systematic Theology.  Una performs at various locations throughout Chicago including recitals and playing for the Chicago Amateur Pianist Guild.

Round-1 – 10 min

J.S.Bach, Prelude and Courante from Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major – 3.5 min
Franz Schubert, No.2 from Drei Klavierstucke, D 946 – 8 min

Round-2 – 15 min – 15 min

Beethoven, Sonata, Opus 10, No.2 – 10 min

Chopin, Mazurka, Opus 50, No.3 – 5 min

YinuoTangBWPhotoYinuo Tang, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Dr. Yinuo Tang was born into a musical family in Beijing, China, where he began studying piano with Guangren Zhou in 1990. He has performed at the Forbidden City Hall at Beijing and Lincoln Center at New York City. He is the recipient of the Gold Medal in the amateur category of the 2015 Sixth Seattle International Piano Competition. He is now an Assistant Professor in Strategy at the University of Hong Kong.


Round-1 – 11 ½ min

Bach-Italienisches Konzert, BWV 971 (I. Allegro) – 3.75 min

Liszt-Tarantella da Guillaume Louis Cottrau, S.162(3) -8 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Bach Busoni Chaconne D Minor BWV 1004

AlVasaitisBWPhotoAl Vasaitis, Palos Park, IL

Alvydas Vasaitis is a retired Computer software programmer/analyst/project manager.  He worked at CNA insurance in Chicago for many years.  He started piano lessons as a child, and continued his musical education through high school.  In college he chose to major in the sciences, choosing Mathematics as his major for his B.S. from Loyola University.  His musical development continued through various activities such as piano accompanist, choral leader, and orchestral conductor, notably in the field of opera.  Al is also an active member of the Chicago Amateur Pianist Guild.

Round-1 – 12 min

Bach, Fantasia in C minor BWV 906 – 6 min

Beethovan, Sonata in C minor Op. 10 no. 1 (1st movement) – 6 min

Round-2 – 14 min

Liszt, Concert Etude  S.144 No. 3 “Un Sospiro” – 6 min

Liszt, Concert Paraphrase on Rigoletto by G. Verdi, S.434 – 8 min

JohnVineyardBWJohn Vineyard, Ithaca, NY

John’s earliest interest in the keyboard favored the 18th century. As well as the studying piano, he spent a number of years studying the harpsichord repertoire and building harpsichords. Eventually, with the growing interest of amateur piano competitions, plus the amount of time required to tune and maintain harpsichords, the piano prevailed.  His teachers have included Emil Danenberg and Stephen Manes at Oberlin and Jennifer Hayghe at Ithaca College. He was formerly President of the Ithaca Opera Association and is Treasurer of the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra. John and his wife Carol live in Ithaca, New York. He has Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in English and a CFA and an MBA in Finance from Cornell University.  He is the President of Sunlake Investment Management.

Round-1 – 11 min

Theodore Leschitizky, Toccata, Hommage a Czerny, Opus 46 No. 5 – 4 min

Brahms, Capriccio, Opus 76 No. 1 – 3.5 min

Brahms, Capriccio, Opus 76 No. 5 – 3.5 min

Round-2 – 15 min

Ferdinand Ries, Fantasy  No. 2 on Themese from Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro – 7.5 min

Rachmaninoff, Prelude, Opus 23 No. 4, 4.75 min

Rachmaninoff, Prelude, Opus 23 #7 – 3.5 min

NathanWollmanBWPhotoNathan Wollman, Chicago, IL

Nathan Wollman, currently a staff attorney in the Legal Research Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County, began playing piano under the direction of his mother at the age of four.  Growing up in a rural community, he was self-taught for around six years and later began formal study of the piano with the late Lewis Hamvas (Yankton College Conservatory of Music) during his junior and senior years of high school, at which time he won the 1993 South Dakota MTNA Yamaha State High School Piano Competition.  Nathan earned a Pro Musica scholarship to study piano at Augustana College, where he was a student of Dr. Rick Andrews for four years and was selected to perform with the college orchestra in its annual Concerto-Aria Concert each of the four years.  As a resident of Chicago since 2001, Nathan continued to study piano with various teachers over the years for short periods of time, though has remained largely self-taught.  He performed a solo recital in May 2004 in Chicago and also in June 2004 and October 2012 in Freeman, South Dakota.

Round-1 – 12 min

Ravel, Odine – 6 min

Bach, Prelude and Fugue No 5 in D-Major, BWV874, WTC Book III – 6 min

Round-2 – 15.5 min

Lowell Lieberman, Gargoyles for Piano, Opus 29 – 10 min

Mozart, Piano Sonata No. 6 in D-major, Mov. 3, Theme w/Variations – 5.5 min


MaryWoolseyBWPhotoMary Woolsey, Homewood, IL

Mary Elaine Woolsey grew up on a small family farm near Ellendale, Minnesota.   She began playing the piano at age nine (9); and continued through her high school years.  As a librarian, she has worked in many different types of libraries from public to corporate, currently working in patent research area as Technical Librarian. She married in 1983 and has two sons, John and Ben.   In June 2010, she decided to take piano lessons and the rest is history.  This is Mary’s first time performing in any amateur piano competition.

Round-1 – 12 min

Grieg, Sonata Opus 7, Mov. 2, – 4.5 min

Schubert Impromptu, D899, No 90, No 3 – 7.5 min

Round-2 – 14.75 min

Barber, Ballade Opus 46 – 7.75 min

Chopin, Nocturne Opus 27 No. 2 – 7 min