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Fanfare Contributor Bio

Scott Noriega

I was born in 1981, in New York City, where I currently reside. I went to the Manhattan School of Music for my B.M. in piano performance, studying under Phillip Kawin there. After graduating, I undertook some responsibilities with a small chamber festival based in Northern California, while teaching privately, accompanying, and performing solo and chamber concerts, both in New York and California (from San Diego up through Los Angeles to San Francisco). I eventually decided to go back for an M.A. in music history, when I felt as though I needed even more and varied musical activities on my plate. I recently graduated (2009) from that degree, where I met my advisor, Professor Richard Burke (a former Fanfare reviewer himself), and wrote my thesis on Richard Strauss. I am now applying for my next degree, a Ph.D. in music history.

I’ve been fortunate to study and work with many distinguished musicians, both in the performing world and the academic one: Donald Pirone, Del Parkinson, James Greening-Valenzuela, Daniel Epstein, Gerald Robbins, Raymond Beegle (another Fanfare reviewer, and marvelous accompanist), Allan Atlas, David Noon, and Giampoalo Bracali, to name just a few.

My interest in music began what feels like a lifetime ago. I can still remember the first CDs that I ever received as gifts—and the first ones that ever made a real and lasting impression on me. The CD that had perhaps the biggest impact on me was Glenn Gould’s 1955 recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Gould was to be a major influence on my musical life, and continues to be even today. From that point on, I was drawn to the piano and its literature, a literature that continues to fascinate me—everything from Sweelinck to Mussorgsky, Beethoven to Nielsen, Mendelssohn to Albeniz. If it’s written for the keyboard, chances are either I’ve read through it, or will very soon.


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