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CLARA

Yang

PIANIST

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“A first-rate pianist who isn't afraid of challenges.” 

Fanfare

NEWS

White Branch

ABOUT

Praised by critics for her sensitivity, intelligence, and excitement in her playing, Chinese-American pianist Clara Yang has performed in notable venues such as Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, the Forbidden City Concert Hall (Beijing), Auditorio Nacional de Música (Madrid), the Seymour Centre (Sydney), Kodak Hall at the Eastman Theater (Rochester), the Sunset Center (Carmel), Memorial Hall (Chapel Hill), Meymandi Concert Hall (Raleigh), and on major series such as Carolina Performing Arts and Dame Myra Hess in the Chicago Cultural Center. She is currently Associate Professor of Piano and Head of Keyboard Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill.

As a concerto soloist, she has collaborated with renowned conductors such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Long Yu, Carl St. Clair, Josep Caballe Domenech, Grant Llewellyn, Tonu Kalam, Laura Jackson, Jeff Tyzik, and George Jackson, among others. In addition, she also frequently collaborates with living composers. She performed alongside Philip Glass in the Glass at 80 festival. She performed the world premiere of renowned composer Chen Yi’s piano concerto with the top orchestra in China, the China Philharmonic Orchestra, in the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing. She also performed the US premiere of the concerto on the Carolina Performing Arts series. Dr. Yang served on the artistic panel for New Music USA

 

Her solo album Folding Time (Albany Records) won a Global Music Awards Gold Medal, and it was selected as one of the Best of 2016 by American Record Guide. She has been interviewed by distinguished publications in China. Her performances were broadcast on major radio stations in the US and abroad. She studied with Nelita True at the Eastman School of Music (DMA), Claude Frank at the Yale School of Music (MM, Artist Diploma), and John Perry at USC Thornton School of Music (BM). Her principal teachers in her pre-college years include Hans Boepple, Guangren Zhou, and Huili Li.

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ALBUMS

Non-Commerical and Live Recordings

recordings
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PHOTOS

VIDEO

Concert Videos
Rachmaninoff Rhapsody (excerpts) Clara Yang piano, Tonu Kalam conductor, UNC Symphony

Rachmaninoff Rhapsody (excerpts) Clara Yang piano, Tonu Kalam conductor, UNC Symphony

04:19
Play Video
Mozart K. 503 excerpts, Clara Yang, piano, George Jackson, conductor, Winston Salem Symphony

Mozart K. 503 excerpts, Clara Yang, piano, George Jackson, conductor, Winston Salem Symphony

05:51
Play Video
Shostakovich Concerto No. 2 (excerpt) Clara Yang piano, Tonu Kalam conductor, UNC Symphony

Shostakovich Concerto No. 2 (excerpt) Clara Yang piano, Tonu Kalam conductor, UNC Symphony

04:09
Play Video
Rachmaninoff Concerto No.1 (III)

Rachmaninoff Concerto No.1 (III)

08:23
Play Video
Clara Yang -  Clinamina for Piano and Electronics by Lee Weisert

Clara Yang - Clinamina for Piano and Electronics by Lee Weisert

07:52
Play Video
Clara Yang - Drones by Stephen Anderson (Official Video)

Clara Yang - Drones by Stephen Anderson (Official Video)

06:33
Play Video
Phil Young Reflection on a Tang Poem (Clara Yang)

Phil Young Reflection on a Tang Poem (Clara Yang)

07:26
Play Video
Prokofiev Sonata No. 7 (III)

Prokofiev Sonata No. 7 (III)

03:30
Play Video

“She possesses qualities that many of the others don't, particularly her way of incorporating the most difficult technical passages into the ongoing musical discourse and a long view of the music in terms of structure.” 

- Fanfare

"She revealed breath-taking technical prowess and keen interpretive insights."

 

- Classical Voice of North Carolina

videos
Schedule

SCHEDULE

October 13-14, 2023

Recital and masterclass at Lawrence Conservatory of Music, Appleton, Wisconsin

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October 22-28, 2023

National reviewer for YoungArts

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January 26, 2024

Piano duo recital with Aaron Diehl, Carolina Performing Arts, Chapel Hill, NC

March 12, 2024

Recital and masterclass at Chapman University, CA

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March 13, 2024

Recital at the Music Teachers Association of California Orange County Branch, CA

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March 14, 2024

Masterclass at Cal Poly-Pomona, CA

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March 20-22, 2024

Festival on the Hill - Ex Machina at UNC-Chapel Hill

April 7, 2024

Ex Machina, Spectrum series, NYC

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April 14, 2024

Jury member of International Piano Professionals Association, Charlotte, NC

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July 29-30, 2024

Jury member of Brevard Music Festival Piano Competition

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September 9-14

Baryshnikov Arts Residency for project Ex Machina, NYC

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White Branch

TEACHING

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Dr. Clara Yang is Associate Professor of Piano and Head of Piano Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill, a top ranked public university in the US. She has given masterclasses and lectures in many major conservatories and universities, such as King's College London, the Liceu Conservatory in Spain, the Musical College of the Moscow Conservatory, and the China Conservatory of Music in Beijing, etc. Her students have won top awards in international, national, and state competitions. Recently her UNC students won the first prize at the MTNA Stecher Horowitz Two-Piano Competition national finals. Her  students have performed in Carnegie Hall and on renowned series such as Carolina Performing Arts, and they have been accepted into top universities and conservatories for graduate studies. Below are comments from UNC students.

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"After four years of teaching, I can easily say that she has been the most impactful professor of my college experience, teaching my far beyond expectation and course subject. She is able to connect with students outside of the classroom, establishing a trust with her students –necessary as learning an instrument can often be a stressful and sensitive practice . In terms of her teaching style, she is positive and honest without being overly complementary. She pushes you and has no problem telling you what you need to improve, but she does so in a way that makes you take ownership for your playing. She suggests improvements while also allowing her students to explore their own ideas about a piece, something I particularly appreciate."

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"She is truly dedicated to seeing her students succeed. I gave my first recital this semester, and knowing how nervous I was, Dr. Yang dedicated extra lesson time to make sure I was ready, as well as numerous conversations about managing nerves and the purposes of sharing music. Dr. Yang is able to bring talent out of you that you didn't know you had, and creates an extremely curious and friendly environment in which to do so." 
 

"Dr. Yang is by far one of the most influential professors I've had at UNC. Having studied with her for four years, I've felt that I have grown tremendously as a musician. Lessons are productive, mentally engaging, and simply fun. She brings insightful and effective feedback, incorporating multiple aspects from techniques for practicing technically difficult sections, relating theory and structure to style and muscality, to even abstract philosophical discussions about the value of music and the emotions it can evoke. Her teaching style is encouraging, friendly, and relatable--inspiring, yet rarely intimidating. In giving suggestions and criticism, she is always clear and never demeaning or dismissive. Dr. Yang is a fantastic teacher and has been a huge factor in my success and enjoyment studying at UNC." 

"Dr. Yang is hands down the best piano teacher I have had. She is excellent at both being critical and encouraging about your work. She's a teacher you want to do well for just because you respect her so much. " 

"You have been such an amazing teacher, friend, and inspiration these past two years. Words can't express how thankful I am!" 

 

"I just want to thank you for being an amazing teacher the last few years. I would not be where I am as a pianist now without your guidance and persistence." 

"This year, I auditioned for and got an MIT Emerson Music Fellowship which funded my private lessons at U. Mass. Boston. As part of the fellowship, I recently gave a solo recital featuring Bartok's Sonata BB 88, Scriabin 9, and Beethoven Op.111. I will also give a recital of Beethoven "les Adieux" for my graduate house in a couple of weeks. 

I have to thank you for everything you taught me in my final semester at UNC. Focusing on producing a good sound and especially attuning my ears for it has been invaluable in adjusting to new pianos and halls. I am constantly complimented on my piano touch by the faculty here. The painstaking work on the first movement of Prokofiev 7 definitely changed my mindset in learning and practicing difficult music and made this year's ambitious program possible." 

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