Praised for his “technically flawless, poetically inspired and immensely assured playing” (Toronto Star), pianist Jiayan Sun performs extensively in the North America, Europe, and China. He has performed frequently with The Cleveland Orchestra, The Hallé, Chinese National Symphony Orchestra, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra (Ireland), Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Concert Orchestra, Aspen Concert Orchestra, among others. He has collaborated with prominent conductors such as Michail Jurowski, Sir Mark Elder, Stefan Sanderling, Leon Fleisher, Xincao Li, David Hayes, Kerry Stratton, and Jinyi Jiang. He has concertized at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York, Severance Hall in Cleveland, National Concert Hall in Dublin, Leeds Town Hall, Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, Royal Conservatory’s Koerner Hall in Toronto, Beijing Concert Hall and Beijing University Concert Hall, Taipei National Concert Hall, and many others. His performances have been broadcasted on BBC, RTÉ, China Central Television, and classical music radio stations in North America.
He has won many major prizes in international piano competitions, including the third prize in Leeds International Piano Competition, the fourth prize and audience prize in Cleveland International Piano Competition, the second prize in Dublin International Piano Competition, the first prize in the inaugural CCC Toronto International Piano Competition, the first prize in National Concerto Competition for Instrumentalists in Beijing, among others. He was recently named a CME Young Artist and a winner of Birte Moller Young Artists Award by the Center for Musical Excellence, NYC. He was also named a “Sylff Fellow” by The Tokyo Foundation. He was awarded the Thirteenth Chengxian Fu Memorial Scholarship by the Central Conservatory in Beijing. In the summers, he has performed and participated in Aspen Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, PianoTexas, Pianofest on Long Island, etc.
Born in Yantai, Shandong Province, China in 1990, he studied with Prof. Jin Zhang in The Middle School attached to the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing from 2002 to 2006. He moved to the United States in 2006 and studied at The Juilliard School Pre-college Division with Ms. Victoria Mushkatkol. He graduated from Juilliard Pre-college with the achievement award in 2008. He received the Bachelor of Music and the Master of Music from The Juilliard School in 2012 and 2014 respectively. He continues his studies at Juilliard as a C. V. Starr Doctoral Fellow under the tutelage of Dr. Yoheved Kaplinsky and Stephen Hough. He performs frequently at The Juilliard School as a pianist, harpsichordist, fortepianist, both as a soloist and a chamber musician. He has participated in the annual ChamberFest and Focus! Festival at Juilliard. He has participated and performed in the master classes by Alfred Brendel, Leon Fleisher, Richard Goode, Paul Badura-Skoda, Robert Levin, among others. His avid interests in early music and early keyboard instruments led him to study harpsichord with Lionel Party and fortepiano with Malcolm Bilson and Audrey Axinn. Equally interested in the art of composition, he studies with composer Philip Lasser. His works have been performed in concerts at Juilliard.
This performance marks Jiayan Sun’s La Jolla Music Society debut.
Musical Prelude Artists
Yunheng (Daniel)Zhi, piano
Yunheng (Daniel) Zhu, a senior at Del Norte High School, began playing the piano at age four and is currently studying under Mrs. Inessa Litvin of Encinitas. Daniel has won numerous competitions, including the United States Open Music Competition, Grossmont Scholarship Competition, Goodlin Scholarship Competition, and American Protégé International Competition. In 2014, he won the MTAC Piano Concerto Competition and the bi-annual Mark Bennett-Caterina Graves Scholarship Award. Daniel performed at Carnegie Hall in May and December of 2013, and participated in the highly selective Tanglewood Institute in 2013, studying with Boaz Sharon of Boston University and Clara Shin of the Korean National University of Arts. Daniel is also an honor roll student and a varsity water polo player. He is the Director of Advocacy at Hand Up, an organization fighting poverty in California; his work earned him two Special Congressional Recognitions for invaluable community contributions.
Lora Li, violin
Flora Li, 17, is currently a senior at Del Norte High School. She began her musical studies at age seven on the piano and picked up the violin a year later. Flora has been a member of the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory for seven years and is currently concertmaster of the Ovation Program. She has won many local, state, and international competitions. This summer, she attended the National Symphony Orchestra’s Summer Music Institute on full scholarship. She has been a regular performer at local retirement homes since elementary school. In addition to being a straight-A student, she serves as Vice President of Del Norte’s Mock Trial team and is a member of Academic League, Science Olympiad, and several tutoring clubs. She will be attending Harvard University in the fall.