Drew Petersen

The Hilton Head International Piano Competition (HHIPC) will present the BravoPiano! 2024 Festival from Thursday, February 29 through Monday, March 4, featuring eleven world-class artists over five days on Hilton Head Island.  This triennial festival celebrates the HHIPC and its rich history, and this season’s event is entitled “PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS…,” which showcases the piano’s many collaborative capabilities.  Guest performers include outstanding HHIPC alumni—both prize-winners and judges—as well as prominent jazz pianists in a variety of ensemble settings.

The festival opens with two premier piano duos in

Orli Shaham

classical music and jazz, who also happen to be married couples: classical virtuosos Ran Dank and Soyeon Kate Lee, (February 29), followed the next night by jazz greats Bill Charlap and Renee Rosnes (March 1).  Saturday’s spotlight is on chamber music, with piano quintets performed by pianist Angela Cheng and the award-winning Verona Quartet (March 2), and Sunday’s program combines jazz and classical music in the masterful hands of pianist Aaron Diehl and bassist David Wong (March 3).  The finale on Monday, March 4 is a three-concerto extravaganza with the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra and Maestro John Morris Russell entitled “Rhapsody and Fantasy,” featuring three different guest soloists. Drew Petersen (2011 HHIPC Second Prize winner) will play Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue (in honor of the 100th anniversary of the premiere); Wynona Yinuo Yang (2022 HHIPC Medalist) will perform Busoni’s rarely heard Indian Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra; and the program culminates with Orli Shaham(HHIPC 2019 Juror) playing Rachmaninoff’s thrilling Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.

Ray Dank & Lisa Marie Mazzucco

Competition Director, Steven Shaiman, says, “We started this festival in 2018 to recognize the HHIPC’s significance as one of the premier international competitions, providing important opportunities since 1996 for young pianists to perform and grow.  By bringing back former winners and judges to perform and by including eminent jazz pianists as well, we shine the spotlight on the HHIPC and proudly celebrate our successful impact on the piano world.  For our third BravoPiano! Festival, since professional solo pianists live very solitary lives as performers, we decided to focus on the piano’s natural collaborative nature, and I am absolutely thrilled to bring these amazing artists here to share their talents with our Hilton Head audience.”

The first four BravoPiano! performances (Feb. 29 through March 3) take place at St.

Wynona Yinuo Wang

Luke’s Anglican Church (50 Pope Avenue), and the finale on Monday, March 4 will be at the HHSO’s traditional concert home at First Presbyterian Church Hilton Head Island (540 William Hilton Parkway).  Tickets for all concerts are on sale now through the HHIPC website (www.hhipc.org).  More information and tickets can also be obtained by calling the box office at 843-842-2055.

About the Hilton Head International Piano Competition:  The Hilton Head International Piano Competition, one of the leading international piano competitions in the United States, operates with a three-year rotation of events: an adult competition for pianists 18–30 years of age, a young artist competition for pianists 13–17 years of age, and a festival—BravoPiano!—which showcases past prize winners and other prominent keyboard artists performing music ranging from classical to jazz.  The HHIPC, inaugurated by the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra in 1996, draws applicants, artists, and audiences from numerous countries the world over, and many HHIPC artists are now enjoying thriving professional careers.