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How Do Pianists Play So Many Notes? Alvin Zhu Explains


The Evelyn Miller Young Pianist Series attracts some of the world's brightest, most talented young musicians. Past performers have either already won numerous prestigious keyboard competitions, while others have gone on to earn those accolades.

Evelyn Miller was a pianist, teacher and visionary who established this concert series in 1980, with the dream of giving pianists under the age of 35 the opportunity to share their music with a Knoxville audience. Past performers include Jeffrey Biegel, The 5 Browns, and Jonathan Biss to name just a few.

The 2020 series will begin with Chinese-American pianist, Alvin Zhu. Born in Pittsburgh to a family of renowned musicians, Alvin completed his bachelor's and master's degrees in piano at the Juilliard school in just five years, and then went on to earn his DMA, completing that in 2019. Currently, he is the youngest professor in the inaugural faculty roster of the Tianjin Juilliard School--Juilliard's first branch campus--specializing in solo piano, chamber music and music history. He has appeared in prestigious venues all over the world, including New York's Alice Tully Hall, Steinway Hall, and the Sydney Opera House.

On Sunday, January 26th at 2:30pm, Alvin will perform Eight Piano Pieces, Op.76 by Johannes Brahms, Alexander Scriabin's Fantasy in B minor, and "Pictures at an Exhibition" by Modest Mussorgsky. The concert will be held in Powell Recital Hall in the Natalie Haslam Music Center on the UTK campus. Tickets and information available at http://youngpianistseries.com


Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.