PITTSBURG — Internationally known artists and student performers from across the United States will debut a large repertoire of music from Sergei Rachmaninoff to Chopin.

Last year, no one knew what to expect during last year’s Pittsburg Piano Festival and Competition, Treble Clef Club Festival Director Janis Saket said.

Despite the uncertainty, the event was a great success, Saket said, guest performers from afar visited Pittsburg and student performers gave their best techniques, arpeggios and more in attempt to win scholarship money and to be showcased during an onstage performance.

Saket said it was exciting for the club to see the event come to life, stemming from two objectives, “to present community with really good music, and second provide education for young musicians.”

This year, the club and the Bicknell Family Center for the Arts are hosting the event again, starting Wednesday.

The competition was open to pianists aged seven to 30, which are separated into three different categories, junior (ages seven through 12), senior category (ages 13 through 18) and young artist 18 through 30).

Scholarships will be awarded to the junior category $100, $75 and $50 for first, second, and third place respectively. Senior category winners will receive either $500, $250 or $100.

The Young Artists competition prizes are $1,000, $750 and $500.  

In addition to the prize money, the top three winners in each category will appear in a concert on Wednesday in the Miller auditorium which will be open to the public.

“I think it’s important for kids in the area to see other kids who can do this… when they can see kids a approximately their age do their things is must be inspiring,” Saket said.

Saket said she encourages student musicians of all ages and caliber, families and musicians of all types to see the show.

Saket praised the festival director Raul Munguia, who will conduct throughout the three day event, which includes the festival orchestra.

“He is marvelous,” she said.

The audience will have an opportunity to listen to last year’s Young Artist winner Chinese Pianist Dr. Teng Fu play again and the “internationally acclaimed” Happy Dog duo will perform piano as well.

“It’s a unique opportunity for Pittsburg State University and the community because “venues of this size don’t get to see this kind of talent or this much of it with an orchestra of this caliber,” she said.

Performers interested in joining in on the competition next year may contact Saket at jsaket@yahoo.com.


Pittsburg Piano Festival times, dates, costs
It will kick off with a day-long competition on Wednesday, with a free recital by the winner at 4 p.m. that day in the Dotty & Bill Miller Theatre in the Bicknell Family Center for the Arts.

On Thursday, Teng Fu, the winner of last year’s Young Artist Award Competition, will perform in concert at 7:30 p.m. in the Lee & Linda Scott Performance Hall in the Bicknell Center. Tickets are $15 and may be purchased at the door an hour before the performance.

On Friday, this year’s festival competition winners and Teng Fu, along with the Festival Orchestra, will perform a concert under the direction of Raul Munguia. It will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Lee & Linda Scott Performance Hall. General admission tickets are $15 and are available an hour before the door opens.

On Saturday, the Happy Dog Duo will perform a concert with the festival orchestra under the direction of Raul Munguia. It will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Lee & Linda Scott Performance Hall. General admission tickets are $15 and are available an hour before the door opens.

Tickets also are available at www.bicknellcenter.com or by calling 620-235-4796 during business hours. Tickets are available during the event.