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Vice President & Artistic Director
Dr. John Noel
John Noel grew up in Henderson, North Carolina, where he began piano lessons at the age of eight. Dr. Noel left Henderson in 1985 to continue his piano studies and general education at the North Carolina School of the Arts, where he received a High School Diploma in 1988. Dr. Noel received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory in 1993, a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School in 1995, and a Diplôme Supérieur at the Schola Cantorum in 2002. He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in 2003. He spent three years in Paris as a recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship, a Harriet Hale Woolley Scholarship and a Société Générale Scholarship. While in Paris, Dr. Noel began his dissertation on the piano music of French composer Henri Dutilleux, following coachings with the composer and his wife, pianist Geneviève Joy. As a Fulbright recipient, Dr. Noel played concerts at the Fondation des États-Unis and the US Embassy in Paris, the University of Nice and the Fulbright Seminar in Berlin.
He played solo and chamber music in Germany, Italy and Jordan as part of the 1987-88 International Music Program of the North Carolina School of the Arts. He performed contemporary music of young Finnish composers in Helsinki and Malmö at the 1994 New Music Festival for Scandinavian composers. Dr. Noel received an award for his performance of the "Chorale and Variations" of Henri Dutilleux following a recital at the 1993 French Piano Institute in Paris. He has performed with the North Carolina Symphony and the Terre Haute Symphony and received first prize in the 1986 Chopin Young Pianists’ Competition in Buffalo, New York. Currently he teaches piano in the Houston area. He is a member of Aurora Musicalis based in Raleigh, North Carolina, an ensemble with whom he recorded the Trio for Clarinet, Cello, and Piano by Carl Frühling (1868-1937).
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