Piano Studies at Walnut Hill

Our piano students come to Walnut Hill to immerse themselves in the highest level of study and intense individual practice. Graduates of our program include George Li '13, HaeSun Paik '83, Gloria Chien '95, and Evren Ozel '17.

Through our partnership with the New England Conservatory of Music, students study privately with College and Preparatory teachers including Wha Kyung Byun, Dang Thai Son, HaeSun Paik '83, Jonathan Bass, and Max Levinson.

In recent years, Walnut Hill piano students have won some of the most important international competitions, including the Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition and the Cleveland International Piano Competition for Young Artists. Other first prizes include the Yamaha USASU International Junior Piano CompetitionHarvard Musical AssociationBoston Symphony Orchestra Concerto CompetitionMorningside Music Bridge Concerto Competition, and the Classicalia International Online Piano Competition.

Graduates of our piano program have gone on to study at The Juilliard SchoolCurtis Institute of MusicNew England ConservatoryEastman School of MusicColumbia University, and Rice University, among other prominent educational programs.

In addition to private lessons, piano students take Piano Seminar with NEC Co-Chair of Piano HaeSun Paik, chamber music, music theory, solfège, and music history, alongside our morning academic program. 

Pianists at Walnut Hill have ample performance opportunities, culminating in a solo recital in their Senior year. Recent guest master teachers have included Robert McDonald, Shai Wosner, Meng-Chieh Liu, Andrius Zlabysand Alessio Bax, among many others.



Cleveland International Piano Competition for Young Artists
Saehyun Kim ‘24 — First Prize, Audience Prize, Junior Jury Prize

Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition
Seokyoung Hong '25 — Bernice Gressman Meyerson First Prize & Audience Award

New England Conservatory Preparatory School Concerto Competition
Saehyun Kim '24 — First Place

Yamaha USASU International Junior Piano Competition
Seokyoung Hong '25 — First Prize Winner
Andrew Sijie Li '25 — Second Prize Winner


Boston Symphony Concerto Competition 
Jinyoung Kweon '23 — First Place 

Classicalia International Piano Competition
Andrew Sijie Li '25 — finalist

A. Ramon Rivera Piano Competition (Rivers Conservatory) 
Jiarui (Gary) Zhou '22 — Second Prize and Bach Prize

Sendai International Music Competition (Japan)
Saehyun Kim '24 — Semifinalist

For a full list of accolades, visit our main Music page.

Seokyoung Hong '25: Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43 - Dallas Symphony Orchestra