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Piano Faculty

Paul Posnak, Professor Emeritus, Keyboard Performance and Director of Collaborative Piano Program, UM Frost School of Music

Hugh Gonglewski, Classical and Jazz Piano

Brian Murphy, Jazz Piano

Inesa Gegprifti, Classical Piano

Alexander Sancho, Classical Piano

Jake Hart, Classical Piano

Keelan Dimick, Jazz Piano, Accompanist

Christopher G. McGinley, Accompanist

BIOGRAPHY

photoPAUL POSNAK - UM Faculty Emeritus

Paul is an internationally recognized concert pianist, recording artist, transcriber, and teacher. He has performed at the White House, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. as soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra (see performance reviews), and to great acclaim at Carnegie and Tully Halls and throughout Europe and Asia. Dr. Posnak is the recipient of the Loeb Prize (the highest award at the Juilliard School of Music), and First Prizes in the International J.S. Bach Competition and the Concert Artists Guild Competition. He has collaborated with world-renowned vocalists such as Luciano Pavarotti and Jennie Tourel and with many chamber ensembles such as the Emerson, Fine Arts, Vega, St. Petersburg, Bergonzi and Amernet String Quartets. His 14 recordings of solo and chamber works for labels such as EMI, Naxos, Vox, Yamaha Disklavier, Arabesque and Cambria have received highest praise. Posnak is renowned for his improvisations and transcriptions of the unpublished brilliant solo improvisations of George Gershwin and Thomas "Fats" Waller from the old recordings and radio broadcasts. His transcriptions of 16 of "Fats" Waller's greatest solos have been published by Hal Leonard, and his Arrangements of Gershwin Songs for Two Pianos have just been published by Alfred Music. Dr. Posnak is Professor of Keyboard Performance and Director of the Accompanying/ Chamber Music Programs at the University of Miami School of Music. Recent engagements include solo recital tours, chamber music concerts, appearances as soloist with orchestras throughout the U.S. and Europe, and a special recital appearance before the U.S. Supreme Court. He is Founding Artistic Director of the St. Martha-Yamaha Concert Series in Miami Shores, and is one of the national judges for the Grammy Awards.

photoHUGH GONGLEWSKI

Hugh Gonglewski is a pianist and instructor in the Miami area. He received his Bachelors Degree in Piano Performance from the Philadelphia college of the Performing Arts where he studied with Susan Starr and his Masters in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Northwestern University. He taught piano and jazz history at Lake Forest College where he also directed the jazz and blues ensembles. He played for ten years in the Chicago area with his own trio and septet before coming to the University of Miami for his Doctoral work. He is instructor of the University of Miami's Computer/Keyboards & Music courses and teaches jazz, theory, and piano ensembles for the university's Piano Preparatory programs as well as improvisation, jazz ensembles and advanced theory for the university's young Musician's Camp. He has played with such diverse artists as Sugar Blue, Sandra Bernhardt, Tom McCormick, Nicole Yarling and Mark Colby. He frequently performs in the Miami area as a solo pianist and with the eclectic group LEGM. His private piano students have received numerous prizes and awards from such groups as Ars Flores, Music Teachers National Association, and Florida Federation of Music Teachers.

photoBRIAN MURPHY

Brian Murphey is an internationally acclaimed pianist, composer and arranger who has recorded and performed extensively in Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan and the U.S.A. with many of the world's most renowned Jazz artists including Wynton Marsalis, Harry 'Sweets' Edison, Buddy DeFranco, Diana Krall, Paquito D'Rivera, Woody Shaw, Dave Liebman, Bob Berg, Wycliffe Gordon and Duffy Jackson and Blues greats Jimmy Witherspoon, Albert Collins and Eddie 'Cleanhead' Vinson.

Brian has collaborated with the great TITO PUENTE as arranger/keyboardist on a number of award winning Latin Jazz albums including Goza Mi Timbal a.k.a. Dig My Timbales (GRAMMY & AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE AWARDS 1990), Out of This World (AFIM AWARD 1991), Mambo of the Times (AFIM AWARD 1992) along with Master Timbalero, The Billy Strayhorn Songbook and Hot Timbales. Their arrangement of Straight No Chaser appears in Rebeca Mauleon's 'SALSA GUIDEBOOK' as a reference for converting a non-clave melody. You can click here to read more about Brian's association with Tito Puente.

Brian Murphy has appeared in Europe and Canada with ROB MCCONNELL AND THE BOSS BRASS. He was featured with flugelhorn virtuoso GUIDO BASSO (1987 - 1994) and is currently recording and performing with IRA SULLIVAN, flute/saxophone/trumpet master. Ira and Brian were featured at the 2002 JVC Jazz Festival in Toronto where they gained enthusiastic response and excellent reviews.

As Artist in Residence at the DuMaurier Jazz Festival, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Brian conducted workshops on improvisation and performed solo and with his trio and quartet. He has received arts grants from the Canada Council for studies in electronic music and for studies with noted composer DOUG RILEY.

Brian's compositions and arrangements have been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, National Public Radio, Radio Finland, Radio Brandenburg (Germany) and numerous Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) programs including Jazz Beat, Jazz Radio Canada, Identities (GABRIEL AWARD), Morningside, The Entertainers, Music Maritimes and various Jazz specials (1978 - present). Click here to view a list of Brian's notable engagements.

Brian is a practitioner of the art of spontaneous composition and he embraces the true exploratory spirit of Jazz.

Inesa GegpriftiINESA GEGPRIFTI

Albanian pianist Inesa Gegprifti has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe, U.S.A, and South America. Gegprifti's recent performances include appearances with the National Radio Television Orchestra of Albania and the Indian Hill Orchestra, chamber concerts in Italy, Slovenia, and Puerto Rico, as well as artist residencies at the "Vivace Vilnius International Summer Festival," International Portogruaro Festival "A tempo," and the Conservatory of Cuenca in Ecuador.

Gegprifti is a graduate of the United World College of the Adriatic, the Boston Conservatory, Indiana University-Bloomington, and the University of Miami. Over the years, she has studied under the guidance of Valbona Kasaj, Dario de Rosa, Maureen Jones, Alberto Miodini, Igor Cognolato, Max Levinson, Evelyne Brancart, Naoko Takao, and Santiago Rodriguez.

Besides being an active teacher-on the faculty of Superior Academy of Music and Frost Preparatory Program-Gegprifti has also started to contribute as a concert reviewer for the South Florida Classical Review since September 2017. She is also the author of www.pianodanza.com, an online compilation of her scholarly research and recordings of solo piano works in the genre of danza puertorriqueña. She recently presented on her research at the Tercer Simposio de Investigación Musical: Andanzas, nuevas perspectivas sobre la danza en el Caribe in Puerto Rico. Gegprifti is one of the co-founders of Kaleidoscope MusArt, Inc., a non-profit concert-presenting organization based in Miami dedicated to promoting emerging artists and composers.

Alex Sancho ALEXANDER SANCHO

Alexander Sancho was born of Filipino descent on February 18, 1989. Raised in Miami, he started playing piano at the age of 12 and was self-taught in theory/music history.Though having a late start, Alex was determined to pursue a music career. He had played with many different orchestras/ensembles across South Florida. Some awards won are 1st Prize in Florida Federation of Music Clubs (Composition), 2nd Prize in the FIU Concerto Competition, 2009 and 2011, the Undergraduate Performance award from the FIU School of Music, 2011, as well as the Teaching Assistant position in Piano. In 2012, he was awarded the Philippine Consulate of South Florida Leadership Distinction Award for Outstanding Achievement and Performance in Music. Though coming from a classical background, Alex takes a musically-eclectic approach in his endeavors, with influences from Hip-Hop to Electronica that help shape his understanding of music. Alex plays regularly for Dr. Rosenberg, President of Florida International University, and graduated from FIU with his B.M. (2011) and M.M. (2013) in Piano Performance, under Professor Kemal Gekic and Dr. Jose Lopez. He is currently a piano instructor at SharpMinds Music Academy where he teaches piano and composition.

JAKE HART

Jake is a student at the Frost School of Music where he is currently pursuing a performance degree, studying with UM Professor of Jazz Piano, Martin Bejerano.

CHRISTOPHER G. MCGINLEY

Christopher McGinley is currently a pursuing a Doctorate in Choral Conducting at the Frost School of Music.