Piano Competition Preliminary Round

Piano Competition Preliminary Round

Marion Buckelew Cullen Center
Westminster Choir College

Now in its 12th year, The Princeton Festival Piano Competition attracts well over a hundred young artists from the tri-state area, nationally, and even internationally. Adjudicated by distinguished conservatory faculty members and accomplished concert performers, this competition provides useful written comments for all participants, with a challenge trophy and cash prize to the winners in each category.

You’ll be impressed with the musicality of these young artists, from the youngest in the Elementary Artist category to conservatory students in the Open Class! We invite you to attend the free Preliminary Rounds and then return for the Final Round to see if your favorite takes home the prize.

Sponsored by Jacobs Music, the region’s exclusive retailer of Steinway & Sons pianos, also representing Yamaha and other fine pianos.




Student Awards

  • Elementary Artists (ages 6-9): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $100
  • Intermediate Artists (ages 10-12): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $150
  • Junior Artists (ages 13-15): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $200
  • Senior Artists (ages 16-18): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $500
  • Piano Four-Hands (under 25): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $400
  • Open Class (under 25): Certificate, challenge trophy, and cash prize of $1000

Special Award

The Richard L. Tang Yuk Award will be presented to one participant for an outstanding performance, independent of the class in which he or she competed.


Joanne Polk

Joanne Polk was catapulted into the public eye with her recordings of the complete piano works of American composer Amy Beach (1867–1944) on the Arabesque Recordings label. She celebrated the centennial of Beach’s Piano Concerto by giving the work its London premiere with the English Chamber Orchestra at the Barbican Center, under the baton of Paul Goodwin, and subsequently performed it with the Women’s Philharmonic in San Francisco, under conductor Apo Hsu, in a performance described as “brilliant” by critic Joshua Kosman of the San Francisco Chronicle.

Dr. Polk received her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Juilliard School, and her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Manhattan School of Music, where she has been on the Precollege faculty since 2006. She has given master classes at many summer festivals and universities across the country and co-founded Manhattan in the Mountains, a three-week summer music festival in the Catskill Mountains, devoted to chamber music, solo performing, and community engagement.

As a result of her work to date, promoting the music of women composers, she was named one of Musical America’s Top 30 Professionals of the Year (2014) in an article titled, “Profiles in Courage.”


Eunhae Grace Yun

Eunhae Grace Yun, as a piano pedagogue and music educator, has taught piano classes to music major and non-major students as adjunct faculty at Temple University for over ten years. Yun values all age piano education and has taught students across a diverse set of skill levels and of ages ranging from toddlers to adults at Temple University Music Preparatory School for over ten years.

Yun regularly adjudicates piano competitions and festivals in the Pennsylvania and Delaware areas. As a researcher and performer, she made appearances at major national conferences. Most recently, Yun has published in the Journal of Music and Arts, presented her research at the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy and performed at the Music Teachers National Association’s Group Piano Pedagogy Forum. Her research interests include the teaching and learning dynamics of group piano classes at the collegiate level, pedagogy of informal music learners and the relationship between experience and music education.