LIVE | Kené Obiaya, 17, piano

March 23, 2024, 11:00 am

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Chicago-raised pianist Kené Obiaya is an alum of the Hyde Park Suzuki Institute and is now a high school senior at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. He presents music of Chopin, Bach, Still and Brahms.

Kené Obiaya is 17 years old and began taking piano lessons at age 3. Kené currently attends Interlochen Arts Academy where he studies piano with Dr. Kara Huber. He previously attended the Chicago Academy for the Arts, and previously studied piano with Laura Fenster and Bethany Stefanut. In the summer of 2023, Kené attended Indiana University Piano Academy where he was selected for the honors recital and won second place in the duet competition. In the past he has attended Interlochen Arts Camp and the Curtis Institute’s Young Artists Summer Program (YASP). He has participated in masterclasses with Sara Davis Buechner, Claire Huangci, Robert Shannon, Michael Coonrod, Amy Yang, Lara Driscoll and the Euclid Quartet. Kené is also passionate about the viola which he studies with Renee Skerik.

He is a six time Gold Medalist at the CAMTA Sonata Festival and a top prize winner at the Roberta Savler contest where he last placed 2nd. In June 2023 he won 3rd prize in the inaugural Nina Simone Piano Competition. He has received accolades in other piano competitions that include the Illinois Federation of Music Clubs (IFMC) state concerto and piano solo; Society of American Musicians; and Music Festival in Honor of Confucius. Kené has been invited to perform at the Chicago and American Suzuki Institute’s Honors recitals each of the last seven years, as well as to the Illinois Federation of Music Club Piano Honors recital each of the five years he contested. He has also performed on WBEZ’s The Morning Shift with Tony Sarabia and been featured on the ABC7 news.


Frédéric Chopin: Etude in C minor, Op. 25, No. 12, Ocean

Johann Sebastian Bach: The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1:
Prelude & Fugue No. 5 in D, BWV 850

William Grant Still: Three Visions:
No. 1, Dark Horsemen
No. 2, Summerland

Johannes Brahms: Piano Pieces, Op. 119:
No. 1, Intermezzo in B minor
No. 2, Intermezzo in E minor
No. 3, Intermezzo in C
No. 4, Rhapsody in E-Flat

Some music is excluded from the podcast version for copyright reasons.