Winners of 2017 Student Artist Competition announced!

Friday, April 7, 2017

We have two winners to announce:

  • Isaac Pyatt, marimba (Student of Dr. Eric Willie)
  • Ekin Üstünel, piano (Student of Dr. Andrew Willis)

For more information on the Student Artist Competition, please visit the Student Artist Competition webpage.

Isaac Pyatt is an undergraduate percussion performance major at UNCG, where he is a recipient of the School of Music Minerva Scholarship. In 2017, he was a winner in the UNCG Student Artist Competition. He won the North Carolina Percussive Arts Society University Soloist Competition in 2016 and 2017. In 2015, he performed with the UNCG percussion ensemble at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention. In high school, Isaac attended University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Brevard Music Center, and NC Governor’s School West. As an active composer, his music has been featured at several new music festivals, and has music published through Tapspace Publications. In addition to performing and promoting his own music, he has premiered and recorded works by John Mackey, Jason Treuting, Kendall Williams, Mark Engebretson, Adam Silverman, Binshan Zhao, and Wesley Levers. He has studied with percussionists Eric Willie and John Beck, and composers Alejandro Rutty and Mark Engebretson.

Ekin Cemre Üstünel (born 1994) started her piano education at the age of six in Turkey. From 2000 until 2003 she studied under Öykü Petek Bilgili and Levon Eroyan. Beginning in 2003, she attended Mimar Sinan State Conservatory for Piano Education, where she studied under Perim Hamidoğlu. Between the years 2004 and 2012 she has performed numerous solo and chamber music concerts. In 2007 she won a competition and performed Mozart Piano Concerto (KV 456) with the Orchestra of Mimar Sinan State Conservatory. Then in 2008 and 2009 studied under Hüseyin Sermet and Laurent Cabasso in the Académie Internationale d’été de Nice. Following this she participated in the masterclasses of Milena Mollova, Emre Elivar and Toros Can. Her education then continued under Perim Hadimoğlu and Burcu Aktaş as the senior student of Mimar Sinan State Conservatory. In 2013 she took the Mansion Reward for Piano Duo from Edirne Mimar Sinan Rotary Club, Chamber Music Competition. Beginning in late 2014 she moved to the United States and started to study under Greg McCallum to recover from an injury she sustained. While studying under McCallum she learned and adapted the ways of injury preventive piano technique that was developed by McCallum. Following her great recovery, Ustunel had done solo recitals, a concerto performance and many other solo concerts in 2015. In March 2016, she won the first place in the 38th annual Dr. Sharyn Edwards Piano Competition. Following this, she had a chance to have lessons with Dr. Paolo Andre Gualdi. Graduating from Mimar Sinan FAU as an honor student in June 2016 and successfully auditioned for UNCG, Ustunel started her education as a student of Piano Performance Master’s Program under Dr. Andrew Willis. In October 2016, she became one of the five students to study with Ann Schein. In January 2017, she participated in UNCG Student Artist Competition and became one of the two winners who will have the chance to perform with UNCG Orchestra.