Piano masterclasses. Niklas Pokki and Hui-Ying Liu-Tawastsjerna

17.02.2023 at 11:00

NIKLAS POKKI (The University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland)
17 February @11.00–14.00 in the Great hall

HUI-YING LIU-TAWASTSTJERNA The University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland)
17 February @11.00-14.00 C-405

Dr. Niklas Pokki (1976) is a founder and artistic director of the Mänttä Music Festival, the most important annual piano festival in Finland, since 1999. He currently works as Head of Piano Department at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy and teaches at the Turku Conservatory. More than thirty of his students have won prizes in national and international competitions. Pokki is an active master class teacher and lecturer, and he works constantly as a juror in national and international piano competitions. He is also the founder and coordinator of a prestigious talent education program, the Youth Piano Academy Finland.

Pokki has performed as a soloist with the Baden-Baden Philharmonic Orchestra and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra. He has premiered works by Jean Sibelius, Erkki Melartin, Kalevi Aho, Osmo-Tapio Räihälä and Tõnu Kõrvits. He has played broadcasted concerts includinh Finnish Broadcasting Company, Classic FM, Eesti Klassikaraadio and SWR1, and made studio recordings. Niklas Pokki studied at the Sibelius Academy and at the Music University of Karlsruhe, Germany. His most important teachers were Matti Raekallio, Teppo Koivisto, Erik T. Tawaststjerna, Carmen Piazzini and Emanuel Krasovsky.


Pianist Hui-Ying Liu-Tawaststjerna was born in Taiwan. She became a permanent resident of Finland in1982, after having lived in several other countries. She holds a Doctor of Music degree from the Sibelius Academy, and a Master’s degree from the Peabody Conservatory of Music. Her principal teachers included Emane Wu, Martin Canin and Konrad Wolff. She also received coaching from Leon Fleisher, Pierre Sancan, Karl Ülrich Schnabel, and Rosa Sabater.

Hui-Ying won her first piano competition in Taipei at age 13. Her ensuing competition success preceded her recital debut in Buenos Aires at age 15, and her orchestral debut in New York at age 17. Ever since she made her Carnegie Recital Hall debut as a winner of Artists International Management’s auditions, she has concertized as recitalist, soloist with orchestra, chamber pianist and collaborating pianist on five continents. She has shared podium with conductors such as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Okko Kamu, Eri Klas, and with instrumentalists such as Steven Isserlis, Paul Tortelier, Patrick Gallois, Jean-Jacque Kantorow, among others. She also performs regularly as a piano duo with her husband Erik T. Tawaststjerna. She has made recordings for the Finlandia Records, and the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE. Her repertoire ranges from Bach to Magnus Lindberg, including a large selection of piano works and chamber music by Sibelius, Beethoven, Chopin, and Debussy.  

Hui-Ying has been a tenured faculty member of the Sibelius Academy since 1984. She has taught a number of outstanding pianists and competition winners such as Antti Siirala, Juho Pohjonen, and Irina Zahharenkova, to mention but a few. She has also given master classes, workshops and lectures in Germany, England, Spain, Ireland, the U.S, Taiwan, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, among others. She was head of the Piano Department in 2004–2008. In addition, she has co-authored a piano method, Piano Key. Presently as the president of the Chopin Society of Finland, Hui-Ying engages herself actively in the promotion of young musicians, classical music and performing arts in general. She is one of the main architects of such musical events as the Baltic-Nordic Crossing Keyboards; the Young Chopin Festival, and the MusicPlus concerts. She received a decoration,Cross of Merit of the Order of the White Rose, from the President of Finland in 2006