LIVE | Zarin Mehta, 16, piano and composer

March 30, 2024, 11:00 am

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Zarin Mehta (Photo: Jonathan Castellon)

We welcome a return guest, pianist and composer Zarin Mehta. In addition to music of Bach, Beethoven, and Lyapunov, Zarin presents a composition and a transcription of his own, plus the North American premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’s Amalgam.

Zarin Mehta, 16, has burst onto the classical music scene as a concert pianist and composer, winning first prize in Senior Piano and twice winning second prize in Composition with the Music Teachers National Association Competitions. He has also claimed prizes in the Hilton Head International Piano Competition, the International Young Artist Concerto Competition (3 times), the Chicago National Chamber Music Competition, the Rembrandt Young Artist Chamber Competition, YoungArts (twice), and more.

In 2023, he made his Ravinia Festival debut with a recital that included his original composition Glimpses. Zarin has also performed at the Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, Chicago’s Symphony Center, Millennium Park for the Grant Park Music Festival, the Roy O. Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and with the Todi Music Masters Festival Ensemble in Italy. To date he has gained nearly 25,000 subscribers and almost 650,000 views on his YouTube channel @ZarinMehta-Pianist-007.

Zarin made his concerto debut at the age of 11 with the Chicago Arts Orchestra and conductor Vladimir Kulenovic. This has been followed by a half dozen further concerto performances, including with the SEEN Worldwide Orchestra (three times) and the Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago. He has also collaborated with the Latika Roy Foundation, creating virtual musical content for students with disabilities and fundraised for the Oscar-nominated documentary To Kill a Tiger.

He has been studying piano for 12 years at New Music School in Chicago where his teachers include Winston Choi, Jeffrey Panko, and Sean Bennett. Zarin also studies composition with Matthew Hagle of the Music Institute of Chicago. He has also studied piano with Antonio Pompa-Baldi, Steven Osborne, Emanuel Ax, Jorge Federico Osorio, Mary Sauer, Boris Slutsky, and Stephen Hough; as well as chamber music with Desirée Ruhstrat and David Cunliffe. In a few months, he is set to attend the 2024 Juilliard Summer Piano Program.

Zarin is in 11th grade at the Francis W. Parker School in Chicago, where he is a Senate Head in the Francis Parker Upper School. Outside music, he plays varsity ice hockey and chess. He previously gave an Introductions piano recital in November 2020 as a 13-year-old. He has also been featured as a concerto competition finalist in April 2020, in March 2021, and in April 2022. His composition Glimpses was broadcast in full in May 2023.


Zarin Mehta: Glimpses:
No. 1, “A Misty Dawn”

Johann Sebastian Bach: Toccata in G minor, BWV 915

Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 24 in F-Sharp, Op. 78, “à Thérèse”:
I. Adagio cantabile — Allegro ma non troppo
II. Allegro vivace

Sergei Lyapunov: Transcendental Etude in B minor, Op. 11, No. 10, Lezginka

Augusta Read Thomas: Amalgam
(North American premiere)

Manuel de Falla-Zarin Mehta: Scenes from The Three-Cornered Hat
(world premiere)