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Kimberly Gilbert to participate in Masterclass with Andrey Gugnin, after a whirlwind trip to USA


PRESS RELEASE:  Local Pianist Kimberly Gilbert will participate in a Masterclass with SIPCA winner Andrey Gugnin on 2nd July

Senior piano student Kimberly Gilbert has had a very busy year so far in 2017. After success in the Bouddi Society of the Arts Grant Applications 2016/17, an award which was presented by John Bell AM OBE, Kimberly embarked on a trip to the USA to participate in a masterclass with Steinway Artist Dr Eugene Alcalay, music professor at the Azusa Pacific University (APU) in California.  Kimberly first met Dr Alcalay when he visited the Central Coast Conservatorium as part of his June 2016 tour when he conducted a piano masterclass which she participated in. 

Kimberly enjoyed a two-and-a-half-week residency at the prestigious university which she describes as “an amazing trip, packed full of musical encounters, but focused very much on my piano performance and benefiting from the knowledge of some expert tuition by Dr Eugene Alcalay.” 

“It was amazing to see how much the School of Music at APU supported my visit, to make it so much more than just about the piano, but involving recitals, opportunities to perform, cello lessons, conducting lessons, an opportunity to conduct a small orchestra, piano literature and pedagogy classes, orchestral rehearsal sessions, and an opportunity to see an amazing rehearsal for a Schumann Quintet performed by teaching staff from APU and other colleges. I also had the opportunity to take an instruction session with a music psychologist.” 

Dr Alcalay has left the door open for Kimberly to return to APU as a Masters student and would welcome the opportunity to work further with her in a Bachelor program next year. As Kimberly is completing her HSC here on the Central Coast, there is a lot to consider before taking up this opportunity. 

On July 2nd Kimberly will perform in a masterclass at the Gosford Anglican Church as part of an international tour of the 2016 SIPCA winner, Andrey Gugnin, organized by Central Coast Conservatorium and funded by the Department of Education through the Regional Conservatorium Grants Program.  The masterclass will commence at 12.00pm prior to Andrey giving a recital at 2.30pm.  The masterclass and the recital are open to the general public.  “It is a rare opportunity for Central Coast audiences to see an international artist performing on a $300,000 piano on loan through the generous support of Steinway & Sons”, said Patrick Brennan, the CEO and Artistic Director of the Central Coast Conservatorium. 

Russia’s Andrey Gugnin was a most impressive performer in the competition, taking out 4 prizes in addition to his overall first placing. He will tour six Australian states and territories delivering performances including works by Bach, Schubert, Shostakovich, and Stravinsky at some 32 venues.  Since his stunning Sydney win Andrey has been in high demand around the world as a soloist, chamber musician and festival artist. 

Reviewer Peter McCallum noted of his winning performance: “Gugnin's nervy, energised and involved playing, high technical development and feel for Prokofiev's imaginative scope, from the dreamy and romantic to the spiky and grotesque, made him the clear winner." -Sydney Morning Herald, 24 July 2016.  His masterclass will be both educational and entertaining with a number of senior piano students participating in the event.

Anyone wanting to purchase tickets to the SIPCA recital or participate in or observe the masterclass, can phone the Central Coast Conservatorium on 4324 7477 or go to their website for more information at

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