2019 Etude Competition

The 2019 US New Star Etude Piano Competition is sooner than you think. Please refer to the rules, application form, etc. available here.

Our Judges:

Dr. Hilary Demske

Steinway Artist Hilary Demske is receiving widespread critical acclaim as a “pianist
of rare technical finesse and musicality” (Deseret News). She regularly appears
across the globe as a soloist and collaborative pianist, with American Record Guide
describing her as full of “splendid panache and assurance”, and Fanfare noting that
“a composer couldn’t ask for more committed or convincing performances”. 
Hilary is regularly invited to perform in prestigious venues across multiple
continents. Recent performances include recitals in Germany, Poland, Hungary, the
Czech Republic, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Turkey, Greece, Canada, Indonesia,
Malaysia, Australia, Tasmania, Mongolia and Taiwan. She has performed in China
annually since 2011, appearing in over 30 cities on multiple tours.
Hilary has adjudicated at numerous national and international competitions,
including the 2012 Gina Bachauer Junior and Young Artists International Piano
Competition preliminary auditions, the Florida State University piano solo
competition, and the Utah Symphony Salute to Youth preliminary auditions.
An avid performer of contemporary music, Hilary’s debut CD ‘Henry Martin:
Selected Piano Music’ includes highly praised premieres including ‘New Prelude and
Fugue XVI’ and ‘Sonata No.4: At Midnight’s Hour’. Additional recording premieres
include Benjamin Sabey’s solo piece ‘Ecstatic Aspen’ on the album ‘Winter Shore’,
the hour-long “Cosmology” by Neil Thornock (Albany Records), and her original
compositions. This year she appeared on an Albany chamber disc featuring the
works of Lou Harrison.
Hilary holds a Bachelor of Music degree from The Peabody Conservatory, a Master
of Music degree from The Juilliard School, a Doctor of Musical Arts from The
University of Michigan, and an Artist Diploma (Meisterklasse diploma) from the
Hochschule für Musik in Munich, Germany. Her principal teachers include Julian
Martin, Logan Skelton, Margarita Höhenrieder, and Samuel Wong.
Hilary is currently an Associate Professor at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah.
As the Director of Piano Studies, she directs the piano major program and teaches
piano literature, piano pedagogy, and chamber music.


Dr. Hsiang Tu

The New York Times has praised the “eloquent sensitivity” in pianist Dr. Hsiang Tu’s performance. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, he debuted in New York at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center as the winner of the Juilliard School Concerto Competition, and he returned to the same venue in 2013 as a soloist with the World Civic Orchestra. Dr. Tu taught at Utah Valley University and Snow College in Utah prior to his current appointment at University of New Hampshire as a Lecturer in Music (Piano).

After coming to the U.S. as a teenager, Dr. Tu studied with Hung-Kuan Chen, Jerome Lowenthal, and HaeSun Paik, and earned an M.M. and D.M.A. in piano performance from the Juilliard School. He was a prize winner at the New Orleans International Piano Competition, the Iowa International Piano Competition, and the American Pederewski Piano Competition in Los Angeles. He has also appeared as a soloist with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Sioux City Symphony Orchestra, Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Lake George Chamber Orchestra, Snow College Orchestra, and the Boston University Symphonic Orchestra.

Dr. Tu has given master classes at Cardiff University, Penn State University, University of Southern California, Loyola University New Orleans, and Colorado Mesa University. He has adjudicated in NHMTA, Chinese MTA of Northern California, and University of Utah SummerArts piano competitions. Dr. Tu also directs UNH’s Piano Extension Program that provides piano lessons to local children and community. For more info, please visit hsiangjohntu.com.