Ph.D. in Musicology (In Progress), UCLA
C. Phil. in Musicology, UCLA
M.A. in Musicology, UCLA
M.F.A. in Music: Piano Performance, UC Irvine
B.A. in Music, UC Berkeley
B.S. in Microbial Biology, UC Berkeley
Aspen Music Festival and School – Solo Piano Program
Boston University Tanglewood Institute – Young Artists Piano Program
CSSSA at CalArts – Music Program
Pheaross Graham is a candidate for the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree in Musicology at UCLA's Herb Alpert School of Music. Broadly stated, his research focuses on classical concert pianists, piano culture, and pianism. As a scholar-pianist, he strives to build bridges between performance and theory.
Prior to receiving his Master of Arts (M.A.) in Musicology at UCLA, Pheaross was presented with a variety of options to pursue piano study at the graduate level with significant scholarships at prestigious conservatories, including the Cleveland Institute of Music. Ultimately, he earned his Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in Piano Performance at the Claire Trevor School of the Arts at the University of California, Irvine. There, he studied with Professor Nina Scolnik, one of the world's foremost exponents of the Taubman approach to piano technique, which emphasizes healthy, sustainable virtuosity and ultimate freedom at the instrument. Thereafter, he continued formal, intensive training with distinguished concert pianists at UCLA, including Professor Walter Ponce.
As an undergraduate at UC Berkeley with an aspiration to give himself an education of breadth, he simultaneously took on the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Music and the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Microbial Biology. At Berkeley, his principal instructor of the piano was Messiaen protégée Jacqueline Chew. While in the Bay Area, he also studied piano with Dr. Sharon Mann and Dr. Betty Woo, both celebrated piano professors of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. His love of the music of Chopin and Rachmaninoff led him to study with Ann Schein, a pupil of Arthur Rubinstein, at the Aspen Music School in Colorado. Stimulating to Pheaross' earlier years were experiences under scholarship at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, and the California State Summer School for the Arts (at CalArts). As a child, his first teacher was Roger Eshleman, a graduate of the Yale School of Music.
The recipient of numerous substantial awards, fellowships, and honors in music, Pheaross has performed in masterclasses with internationally acclaimed recording artists, including Japanese pianist Aki Takahashi, Italian pianist Marino Formenti, and Scottish pianist Malcolm Martineau. Additionally, Pheaross has made television appearances as a pianist on several networks, including PBS and Univisión. At UC Irvine, Pheaross served as a collaborative pianist with the 90-member University Choir and the Chamber Choirs. There, he also taught piano to undergraduate music majors. At UCLA, he is a Teaching Fellow and enjoys teaching in a wide spectrum of lecture-based music history/musicology courses for majors and non-majors alike. He is also an active performer.
Pheaross is an experienced instructor who maintains a private piano studio; he serves students of the San Fernando Valley, the greater Los Angeles area, and Orange County. Pheaross Graham is uniquely patient, caring, skilled, and committed to delivering a comprehensive musical education that sows seeds for lifelong fulfillment. Pheaross is an active member of the American Musicological Society and the Music Teachers' Association of California. Grateful for all his teachers, he hopes to pass down and distill their collective years of wisdom in conjunction with his own insights as a performer and scholar to his students.
BRIEF NOTE ABOUT RESEARCH
Modern classical piano culture is facing a predicament. With ever-greater frequency, dedicated listeners, concert artists, pedagogues, and scholars complain that contemporary performances of the core repertory sound remarkably alike and uniform in interpretative exploration. This is to say, many of today’s pianists are pressed, consciously or unconsciously, to conform to routine, standardized artistic models. In his musicological research, Pheaross creates and proposes wide-ranging, integrative methods for performance analysis that link concrete data to considerations accounting for the experience and larger meanings of historic recordings. He aspires to reinvigorate playing today by stimulating well-rounded awareness of diverse performing approaches pushed aside by modern forces.