B i o g r a p h y
Praised as a "magnificent" pianist who "offers compelling insight" (Fanfare Magazine), Chinese-American pianist Susan Yang maintains a versatile career as a performer, presenter, and pedagogue. Currently under management by the National Federation of Music Clubs, Yang captured First Prize in the 2019 biennial NFMC Young Artist Competition. She has also earned top prizes at competitions such as the International Keyboard Odyssiad, Naftzger Young Artist, and New York Festival and Competition, among others. An avid chamber musician, she has performed with multiple ensembles, one of which won the 3rd prize at the 2013 Music Teachers National Association Chamber Competition. Equally accomplished in her research and scholarship, Yang has garnered numerous grants, including the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Arts Scholar Award and the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate Fellowship. Recent performance highlights include solo appearances with the Nashville Symphony, Ann Arbor Symphony, and the Delta Symphony, as well as the release of her debut album, DOORWAYS: Half-Remembered Music, on Blue Griffin Records.
Yang joined the piano faculty at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music in 2018. Previously, she has held positions at the Schoolcraft College, Ann Arbor School for the Performing Arts, and Cincinnati School of Music. As a pedagogue, she presents regularly in various settings, such as the local, regional, and national MTNA conferences as well as the Piano Pedagogy Symposiums. Yang is a two-time recipient of the Royal Conservatory of Music Certificate Program Award for her excellence in teaching and student achievements.
An advocate for addressing social issues through music, Yang is committed to community engagement and outreach. She has initiated many projects and performances, such as curating a recital program that celebrates women’s suffrage, organizing and performing benefit concerts, and teaching free lessons to low-income students. One of her current undertakings, A Seat at the Piano (ASAP), is a collaborative initiative that promotes inclusion in piano repertoire and advocates for composers from marginalized and underrepresented communities.
Yang holds a D.M.A. in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Michigan, M.M. in Piano Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and B.M. cum laude in Piano Performance from Vanderbilt University. Her primary teachers include Logan Skelton, Elisabeth Pridonoff, and Amy Dorfman.