Jan Loeffler, piano
JJan performs as soloist, soloist with orchestra and as chamber musician, in countries such as Germany, the UK, the USA, France, Italy, Hungary and Ireland. Performances of Schubert's 'Winterreise' in a critically acclaimed performance at the National Concert Hall in Dublin and in the USA with tenor Mark Duff were particular highlights.
Another highlight was the world premiere of a composition commissioned for his mezzo- soprano wife and him by renowned British composer Howard Skempton - recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award in 2005 and 2008 - whose works are regularly being broadcast on national radio and being performed by orchestras such as the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra at venues including the Barbican Hall London and the Royal Albert Hall as part of the 2010 BBC Proms season.
Jan has given the UK premieres of pieces by Mendelssohn contemporary Ferdinand David and American composer Michael Slayton with violinist Peter Sheppard-Skærved, Viotti Lecturer at the Royal Academy of Music.
An active teacher, performer and adjudicator in the UK and overseas, Jan has been Professor of Piano at Birmingham Conservatoire since 2013, where student performances have attracted national and international praise. Student successes already include an international piano competition prize, winning the internal Beethoven Piano Competition at Birmingham Conservatoire and thus representing the institution at the Intercollegiate Beethoven Piano Competition in London in November 2013, and exposure in master-classes of national relevance, as well as students being involved in concert performances at Birmingham Symphony Hall with the City of Birmingham Symphony Youth Orchestra under Edward Gardner.
Jan has given master-classes at the Royal College of Music London, Vanderbilt University (USA), Lipscomb University (USA), Pepperdine University (USA) and at the National Young Pianists' Week and held teaching posts at Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama London and Junior Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (Deputy). Jan adjudicates regularly and has been invited to chair the panel in the 2015 final of the Jersey Young Musician of the Year competition.
Jan graduated from the 'Hochschule für Musik Würzburg' in Piano Pedagogy and in Piano Performance. Invited to study at all four major music colleges in London with two scholarships, he decided to accept a place at the Royal Academy of Music where he studied with Ian Fountain and obtained his MMus (Performance & Research) in piano and LRAM teaching licentiate in September 2009.
He is the author of two dissertations: The Teaching of Excellence - Investigating the Role of the Teacher (Royal Academy of Music London, 2009), and Expert Learning - The Neuro- Scientific Approach to Expertise (Hochschule für Musik Würzburg, Germany, 2005).
Jan has participated in master-classes with Christopher Elton, Andrzej Jasiński, John O'Conor, Iván Klánsky, Pascal Devoyon, Josef Anton Scherrer, Nikita Jushanin, Renate Kretschmar- Fischer, Thomas Stumpf, and the piano duos Hans-Peter & Volker Stenzl and Andreas Grau & Götz Schumacher.
Jan's illustrious teaching ancestry reaches as far back as L.v. Beethoven himself, through Silke-Thora Matthies -> Renate Kretschmar-Fischer -> Conrad Hansen -> Edwin Fischer -> Martin Krause -> Franz Liszt -> Carl Czerny to Beethoven.
"When I heard Jan perform last year, it was immediately clear that he had a formidable technique. [...] his performances were immensely thoughtful and imaginative. There was virtuosity in his touch, and in his ability to colour sound: evidence, I would argue, of a fine ear and keen attention to detail. [...] One of my ambitions is to write a concerto for Jan. He is a fine artist, with the sensibility and intelligence to be an invaluable teacher." (Howard Skempton, 2013)
"This was a performance that displayed an interesting, intelligent, thoughtful and sensitive artist who possesses a real understanding of Brahms." (Ashley Wass, pianist, 2009)
"They [the students] have noted the remarkable elegance and facility with which you were able to help them improve - from minute details of technique to larger elements of proper music-making and understanding. [...] I was continually impressed by the dramatic changes students were able to make in a very short time, whether in technical skill, tangible sound of the instrument, or simply in the psychology of approach; this is a tribute to your adroit instruction. [...] it was especially helpful for our students to see firsthand that you apply the very same tenants you espouse in your teaching to your playing. Your beautiful, careful approach to the Brahms Intermezzi in your solo recital was a clear example (as was the stunning Beethoven!)." (Prof. Dr. Michael Slayton, Chair of Composition/Theory, Vanderbilt University, Blair School of Music, 2011)
"His work with my students in my Collaborative Piano class was perfect. His performance the next evening of the Schubert 'Winterreise' cycle was one of the most moving musical experiences in the twenty years I've been presenting these concerts." (Prof. Dr. Jerome Reed, Chair of Piano, Lipscomb University, 2011)