Antoinette van Zabner
Born in Austria and raised in the United States, Antoinette Van Zabner began her musical studies at the age of four and at five won her first competition on the Canadian Broadcasting System. At 13, Miss Van Zabner was awarded a scholarship to study piano with Jean and Robert Casadesus and harmony with Nadia Boulanger in Fontainebleau, France. She made her first orchestra appearance at 16, after winning the Rhode Island Concerto Competition. At Vassar College, where she studied with Blanca Uribe she was granted the Evans Award twice, the Eloise Ellery Fellowship, Phi Beta Kappa, and was named Presser Scholar for her assiduous work in pursuit of excellence in the field of music.
At the Yale School of Music where she studied with Ward Davenny receiving her Master's degrees in Music and Musical Arts, she was awarded the Catherine.S. Winchell and Frances Tapp scholarships.
She won, among other awards for outstanding performance, a Fulbright Grant for piano study at the Hochschule fuer Musik in Vienna, Austria, where she studied with Dieter Weber and Hans Graf and earned her Diploma in piano performance. Miss Van Zabner has taken part in master classes with such distinguished pianists as Byron Janis, Gina Bachauer and Claude Frank. She also studied with Philippe Entrement and Gaby Casadesus at the Ravel Academy in St. Jean de Luz where she performed with the Toulouse Orchestra under the direction of Michel Plasson.
Miss Van Zabner made her American debut in 1982 at the Pan American Union, Washington, D.C., her London debut at Wigmore Hall and her Viennese debut at the Konzerthaus. She has appeared in the Vienna Summer Music Festival, the Vienna International Festival, in the Festival Klangbogen, the Norfolk Music Festival in Connecticut, the Golden Hall of the Vienna Musikverein and with her piano duo in the Grand Hall of the Konzerthaus, the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing and the Frutillar Festival in Frutillar, Chile.
Miss Van Zabner has toured with the Slovakian Chamber Orchestra, the Prague Virtuosi and the Niederösterreichisches Tonkuenstler Orchestra and performed with her piano-duo partner Waltraud Wulz throughout Europe, Japan, Chile, the United States and China where they opened the summer Olympics 2008 with a Viennese program named „Tales from Vienna“.
Miss Van Zabner has judged various piano competitions sich as Yehudi Menuhin’s „Live Music Now“ and has given master classes and solo and chamber music concerts at Brown University, Converse College, Furman University, Emory University, St.John’s College, the South Carolina Governor's School for the Gifted in the Arts, Conservatorio Giuseppe Tartini di Trieste, Italy, Conservatorio di Jacopo Tomadini in Udine, Italy, Conservatorio San Pietro a Majella
Naples, Italy, Santa Cecilia in Rome, Italy, Conservatorio Superior Granada, Spain, the Toho College of Music in Tokyo, Japan, and at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. She has a full professorship in piano at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna, Austria.
As an accompanist, she has worked with such renowned artists as Angelika Kirschlager, Birgid Steinberger, Norbert Ernst, Georg Lehner, Nigel Rogers, Patricia Wise, Peter Matzka, Maestro Andreas Stöhr, the Istropolis Quintett, the Amadeus Ensemble, and the Koehne Quartett. Ms. Van Zabner works closely with the Austrian Organisation of Contemporary Composers for which she has premiered countless works for the National Austrian Broadcasting-Station ORF.
Her first recording was produced with members of the Munich Philharmonic. Her most recent were produced by Vienna Modern Masters and the Austrian label Gramola, which brought out her solo CD „Bridges to Beyond“ – a recording of precious less-known impressionist piano works which present the sensitive artist as a specialist for beautiful, rich, soulful sound quality. Her two duo CDs „Profiles“ and „Tales from Vienna“, played with her piano partner Waltraud Wulz have also received rave reviews.
She and her university colleague Elisabeth Aigner-Monarth are the co-authors of the international best-sellers "Piano Fitness" and "Piano Fitness with Etudes" brought out by Universal Edition, and „TWOgether“ brought out by Breitkopf and Haertel - all of which have brought fresh wind into the traditional pedagogical literature scene and which have already become „classics“ in modern teaching literature. Antoinette Van Zabner was Coca-Cola Artist in residence at Emory University in 2007. She is a member of the Austrian Fulbright Commission, one of the founding members of the Fulbright Round Table for women and president of the Yale Club of Austria.
Antoinette Van Zabner was recently awarded the Ian Mininberg Award - the highest award of distinction for alumni of the Yale School of Music.