A musical career that began “by accident” at the age of four to tame her “unruly” behavior, has blossomed into a prolific career in musical performance and pedagogy for Dr. Angelin Chang. Recently signed as Yamaha’s first Academic Performing Artist, Chang began her relationship with the company several years ago when she met Yamaha’s Mike Bates at a Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) Conference. She was left with a positive impression: “I liked hearing about all the great things that were going on with Yamaha,” she recalls.
As 2007 GRAMMY Award Winner for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance with Orchestra, the internationally acclaimed pianist has been lauded for her sense of poetry and technical brilliance. She performs in Europe, Asia, Africa and North and South America at such venues as the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), Kimmel Center (Philadelphia), Lincoln Center (New York), Severance Hall (Cleveland) and St. Martin-in-the-Fields (London), among numerous others.
As the first Artist-in-Residence at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Chang participated in the development and launching of the “Arts for Everyone” initiative. She has performed at the U.S Department of State, for the United Nations Women’s Organization and before the Royal Family of Nepal. An active chamber musician, she performs regularly with the legendary violist Joseph de Pasquale, The de Pasquale String Quartet, and with members of the Philadelphia and Cleveland Orchestras.
With her rock-solid academic background, this busy performance schedule is only one aspect of Chang’s multi-faceted career. She earned her Doctor of Musical Arts from Peabody Institute Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Johns Hopkins University, Premier Prix Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Piano and Premier Prix Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Musique de Chambre from the Paris Conservatoire, Master of Music and Distinguished Performer Certificate from Indiana University, B.A. (French) and B.M. from Ball State University, and highest honors upon graduation from the Interlochen Arts Academy. She is head of keyboard studies and a professor of piano at Cleveland State University. Previously, Chang was on the piano faculty at Rutgers University.
To support her prolific accomplishments, Chang turns to Yamaha pianos. In addition to the several acoustic grands in her studio, she relies on the Disklavier performance reproducing piano. “The record and playback function helps my students critique themselves objectively and to immediately see and hear what’s happening with their technique.”
While the record and playback capabilities also prove to be a handy and practical tool for piano exam and recital preparation, Chang is equally fascinated by the instrument’s emerging applications. “I am truly excited by the distance learning possibilities created by Disklavier technology,” she adds.
Chang’s extraordinary resume is rounded out by such CD releases as “Soaring Spirit” (Albany Records) with Joseph de Pasquale on viola, and with the Cleveland Chamber Symphony (TNC) in Olivier Messiaen’s Oiseaux Exotiques and Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 1.
Her professional affiliations include roles as the North America Representative for the Festival Afro-Asiatique Mondial des Oeuvres de SolidaritÃƒÂ© (FAMOUS), and President of the Panafrican Music and Arts Festival/Piano Division. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Great Lakes Theater Festival (Cleveland), Co-President of the Ohio Music Teachers Association Northeast District, and State Coordinator for the MTNA Young Artists and Chamber Music Competitions. Through her work with the Taubman Approach and Seminars in New York, Chang helps pianists develop virtuosity while liberating them from fatigue, pain and injury.
As if all this weren’t enough, she was also just bestowed with her first Grammy Award. “It was already an honor to be on the short list of nominees, and to be the only American nominated,” Chang says. “Winning the Grammy for this major classical category is beyond words.”
On her relationship with Yamaha, she notes, “it’s wonderful to collaborate with Yamaha and its artists Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and to not be limited to a particular niche. Yamaha is great because it respects history and heritage, but also believes in moving forward from a technology perspective. That’s what makes the company attractive to me. They are forward-thinking without sacrificing history or quality merely for technology’s sake. They respect both,” she says, adding that “the Yamaha staff is gracious.”
“We are honored to have an artist of Angelin’s stature be associated with Yamaha,” says Mike Bates, manager of Yamaha’s Institutional and Commercial Services (ICS) Department. “As our first academic artist, we look forward to a fruitful and collaborative relationship with her for many years to come.”