Summer 2019

Summer 2019 brings a number of events, performances, and travels!

June began with a solo recital as guest artist for the Minnesota Music Teachers Association (MMTA) annual convention in Bloomington, MN. I was happy to fill in as a replacement for the convention’s original guest artist, Randall Faber. For this and other recitals over the summer, my program features six transcendental etudes by Franz Liszt and the eight Etudes-tableaux, op. 33 by Sergei Rachmaninoff.

I performed the same solo recital at the 2019 Festival of the American Matthay Association (AMA), this year at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Tobias Matthay is a pedagogical figure that inspires me to continue thinking critically about my own teaching and technique. I had the privilege of attending many sessions during the conference, including those by the keynote speaker Stewart Gordon and a guest recital by Ann Schein. I will be hosting next summer’s conference at The College of St. Scholastica, June 24-27, 2020.

I am returning to the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp to teach again this summer and will, for my first time at this festival, present a solo recital there. July will wrap up with a masterclass and solo recital as guest artist for the Minnesota Federation of Music Clubs biennial convention (MFMC), likewise hosted at my college. I feel incredibly fortunate to be such an active part of both MMTA and MFMC’s conventions this summer!

Student Success - Gabby Koepke


Congratulations to my pre-college student, Gabby Koepke, for winning 1st Prize in the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Competition! Gabby won this concerto competition with her polished performance of the 1st movement of Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto no. 1, op. 25. Way to go!

The DSSO Young Artist Competition is an annual event for music students 18 years old or younger living in Minnesota, Wisconsin, or Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. All instruments compete together at Weber Hall (University of Minnesota Duluth).

First Prize, 2018 Beardsley Piano Competition

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The 2018-19 year is off to a great start! Last weekend I was privileged to win first prize in the 2nd annual Beardsley Piano Prize Competition, a relatively new piano competition in Elkhart, Indiana. The competition took place in a gorgeous and historic venue, the Ruthmere mansion.


The competition came with a cash prize and a return performance to take place at Ruthmere on October 11th, at 7:00pm. This concert will also feature the Norell Piano Duo, Luke Norell and Mary Rose Norell.

Thank you to all who helped sponsor the competition, to those who helped run the competition day, and to the three judges.

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American Record Guide: "I love, love, love the Scarlatti."

"...the playing on this self-produced first album is, in a word, spectacular...A release like this reinforces my long-held contention that great artists come from anywhere, not just New York, London, or Berlin (Susi hails from St. Louis) and that—in spite of everything—there are still a few exciting artists making real music and taking real chances with it." American Record Guide
"Susi is a gifted technician who executes the myriad ornaments in the [Scarlatti] sonatas with crispness and ease. The clarity of his playing is a delight to hear...He is an innovative musician and aggressive thinker with a gift for keyboard brilliance." The WholeNote
"This premier recording reveals he’s a great technician, that he’s sensitive to the style of pieces he presents, and has a vision for engaging the listener with variety and diversity in his programming...I have to admire a performer who is willing to challenge listeners in 'seeing' and hearing new relationships in music." Audiophile Audition


These are some highlights of positive press that my debut recording, Scarlatti Now, has been receiving over the past few months! Reviews have appeared on the web or in print from The WholeNote, American Record Guide, and Audiophile Audition, with a forthcoming review in International Piano. Needless to say, I am deeply gratified to read critics' thoughts and impressions of my disc in print!


Links to full reviews are available here:

Sebastian Herrera writing at Audiophile Audition

Alex Baran writing at The WholeNote

2017 Clara Wells Fellowship

I am pleased to announce that I have just been awarded one of two 2017 Clara Wells Fellowships through the American Matthay Association!

The two Clara Wells Fellows (one high school, one collegiate) will be in residence during the Matthay Piano Festival, June 14-17th in Tempe, Arizona. I am looking forward to participating in the festival performances, deepening my understanding of Tobias Matthay's pedagogical works, and meeting the members of the association.

Radio interview (Radio Arts Foundation, St. Louis)

In case you missed my interview with Kathy Lawton Brown last week on 107.3 (The Radio Arts Foundation) in St. Louis, you can listen to the whole thing right here. We had a great time talking and getting to know each other - I am so appreciative to the radio station for having me!

Amidst the conversation, you can also hear three tracks from my new CD, Scarlatti Now:

1. Sonata in C major, K. 159 (Domenico Scarlatti)

2. Figaro's Cavatina from the Barber of Seville (Gioachino Rossini, transcribed by Grigory Ginzburg)

6. Une barque sur l'océan (Maurice Ravel)

Belhaven residency

I had so much fun last month performing and teaching at Belhaven University in Jackson, Mississippi - What a great facility and group of students! Huge thanks to Dean Steve Sachs for hosting me and to the Mississippi Federation of Music Clubs for attending the event!

With members of MFMC following my recital. From left to right: Dr. Stephen Sachs, Susan Johnson, Carolina Whitfield-Smith, Nick Susi, Frances Nelson, Kay Johnson, and Cecil Fox