Thu January 23 | 7:30 PM

Tania conducts Sibelius

Beethoven Piano Fest

Combining power and grandeur with tender, poetic expression.


January 23, 2025 7:30 PM

Tania conducts Sibelius

Beethoven Piano Fest

FINALIST 4 | Tania Miller, conductor
Harmony Zhu, piano

Andrea Tarrodi | Birds of Paradise

Beethoven | Piano Concerto No. 4

Sibelius | Symphony No. 1

Combining power and grandeur with tender, poetic expression, the Fourth Piano Concerto of Beethoven stands as one of the most profound achievements. Hear it performed by Harmony Zhu, hailed as a "deeply musical soul and nimble technician... with utter naturalness and probing sensitivity" (Chicago Tribune). Journey through the Nordic ice and soaring splendor of the First Symphony by Sibelius and explore the Birds of Paradise, as inspired by BBC's Planet Earth.

About Harmony Zhu

Harmony Zhu

Hailed by the Chicago Tribune as “a deeply musical soul and nimble technician… with utter naturalness and probing sensitivity” and the Times Union as “an impressive soloist, a sparkling and happy presence... unflappable”, 17-year-old pianist and composer Harmony Zhu is described by David Dubal as “part of the next great Golden Age of the piano”. In addition to winning the 2021 Young Concert Artists Susan Wadsworth International Auditions and becoming the youngest artist on the YCA roster, Harmony has been a Young Steinway Artist since age 10, the youngest to be named one of the “30 Hot Canadian Classical Musicians Under 30” by CBC Music, and featured many times on NBC’s The Ellen DeGeneres Show, CBC News, National Public Radio’s From the Top, and CBS, among many others, for her exceptional gifts in piano, composition, and chess.

Harmony has appeared as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic, Detroit Symphony, Orquesta Filarmónica de Medellín, Albany Symphony, Orlando Philharmonic, Illinois Philharmonic, Aspen Philharmonic, Hawaii Symphony, Peoria Symphony, Amarillo Symphony, Aspen Conducting Academy Orchestra, and Big Spring Orchestra, among others, with some of the most venerated and Grammy-Award-winning conductors including Leonard Slatkin, Marin Alsop, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, John Giordano, and David Alan Miller. She has performed extensively worldwide, being the youngest invited to perform in many prestigious festivals including the Verbier Festival, Ravinia Festival, Oxford Piano Festival, and Aspen Music Festival, to name a few. Her extraordinary musical maturity, together with her charming charisma and upbeat personality, has captivated and inspired people everywhere she goes.

In 2022 Harmony jumped in at 24-hour notice for the late maestro Alexander Toradze, performing Prokofiev Concerto No. 3 with the Illinois Philharmonic and Maestro Stilian Kirov. “As an 11th-hour stand-in the 16-year-old Canadian came, played and conquered in a barn-storming rendition of Prokofiev’s knuckle-busting warhorse,” observed the Chicago Classical Review, “Zhu more than lived up to her billing… the teen pianist displayed not only an airtight technique but power and arm strength that belied her slender frame… she showed her chops, blazing through the most clustered thickets of notes and rounding off with a lightning coda that drew extended premature applause from the Palos Heights audience… brought coruscating brilliance to the finale, ratcheting up the spiky bravura with arm sweeps up and down the keyboard and concluding in a pounding, edge-of-the-seat coda… Zhu clearly has both the stellar technique and musical insight to have a major professional career. Let’s hope she is back with the IPO—or CSO—soon.”

Harmony had the honor of opening the Philadelphia Orchestra’s 118th season at their Opening Night Gala Concert at the age of 10 playing Beethoven Concerto No. 1 under the baton of Yannick Nézet-Séguin. When she was 12, Harmony was honored to tour with the Israel Philharmonic and Detroit Symphony. After her debut appearance as a soloist at the Ravinia Music Festival that same year celebrating the 100th anniversary of Leonard Bernstein’s birth, she was invited back to Ravinia by Marin Alsop the following year to perform with her and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Pavilion. Harmony performed at the Aspen Music Festival’s Benedict Music Tent with the Aspen Orchestra after winning the AMFS Concerto Competition when she was 12 before being invited back to perform with the Aspen Philharmonic the following year. Performing regularly at prestigious venues worldwide, 2019 marked Harmony’s debut at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium following multipleconcerts at Carnegie Hall’s other halls over the years. That same year, Harmony had the great privilege of performing at Lincoln Center's 60th Anniversary Diamond Jubilee Gala, sharing the stage with such prominent artists as Joshua Bell and Misty Copeland. Harmony also had the honor of being the only student pianist to perform at the Juilliard Pre-College Centennial Gala Concert as well as the farewell gala for the former Juilliard president, Joseph Polisi, before being invited again the following year as the only Pre-College student to perform at the Juilliard Spring Gala.

Many music festivals, foundations, organizations, and orchestras have invited Harmony to record concerts and host events. In honor of International Piano Day, Harmony was featured on Classic FM to widespread acclaim. She also had the honor of hosting and performing in the Lang Lang International Music Foundation Gala Concert, “Lang Lang & Friends: Reaching Dreams Through Music”, which was broadcast globally, in addition to hosting a weekly “Concert Countdown Series” live stream on the Lang Lang Foundation’s social media pages leading up to the gala concert. She was featured in the Steinway & Sons Lunar New Year Concert and invited to record for the Steinway & Sons Spirio Catalog. The New Jersey Symphony also featured Harmony in their Lunar New Year Celebration Concert Series at the NJPAC. Since she was first featured on the Emmy-award-winning show, From the Top, broadcast on NPR, at age 9, Harmony has been a frequent collaborator of the show, starring in two of their most popular music videos, one of which was chosen as WQXR’s “19 of Our Favorite Internet Moments of 2018”. With a deep musical sensitivity far beyond her age, Harmony has distinguished herself by consistently winning first prizes in piano competitions from an early age, including becoming the youngest winner of the 2018 Bachauer Scholarship Competition and Aspen Music Festival Concerto Competition at age 12. She won the Grand Prize at the VI Chopin International Competition in Connecticut, in which she set records for both being the youngest winner in history and earning the highest mark ever at 99.8. At the age of 6, she became the youngest winner in history to win the First Prize in the Canadian Music Competition, as well as the only participant ever to consistently win the competition for 3 years in a row all from older age categories. Harmony studies with Emanuel Ax and Veda Kaplinsky. She started studying at Juilliard when she was 8 and in the same year became the youngest winner of the Juilliard Concerto Competition. Harmony is also a versatile composer as well as an accomplished improviser.

Harmony’s talents extend well beyond music. As a chess prodigy, Harmony has won numerous First Places in international and national chess tournaments and started playing in open tournaments with adults when she was 6. She was awarded the title of Woman Candidate Master at the tender age of 7 and holds the title of World Champion of her age group after winning the World Youth Chess Championships. Harmony’s phenomenal talent led her to create a sensation when she was featured at The Simms/Mann Think Tank, an annual convening of leading neuroscientists from around the world on cutting-edge science related to the brain development of children. Apart from piano and chess, Harmony’s greatest passion is visiting art museums and learning everything about art. She also loves photography, reading, birdwatching, doodling, dancing, ping pong, badminton, swimming, and making fancy ice cream sundaes. As a voracious learner who excels with a passion for all academic areas, Harmony attends the prestigious Brearley School in NYC. (via)

Health & Safety

The health and safety of Eugene Symphony audience members, musicians, and staff members has been and will always be our top priority. We strongly welcome and encourage patrons who wish to continue wearing masks while attending performances to do so. We want all of our attendees to feel comfortable and accepted in your choice. You take care of you, we'll take care of the music and ensuring that your experience attending a Eugene Symphony concert remains exceptional.

For the most up to date health and safety protocols for our concerts, visit our Eugene Symphony Safety page.

LOCATION: Hult Center for the Performing Arts