Hayes School of Music Piano Competition

3rd Annual Hayes School of Music Piano Competition - 2020

Regretfully, we will be postponing the 2020 Hayes School of Music Piano Competition until Fall, 2021 

Please bookmark this page for more information next year!

Where: Appalachian State University, Hayes School of Music - Boone, NC

Eligibility: Pre-College Pianists – 8th–12th grade

                   U.S. citizens with primary United States residence


  • First Prize:            $1,000
  • Second Prize:         $750
  • Third Prize:             $500
  • Fourth Prize:          $250

Additional Honors:

  • Full and partial scholarships to Cannon Music Camp at the Hayes School of Music 
  • Winners' Showcase Concert - immediately following the Awards Ceremony


The competition will be held in two rounds:

  • Preliminary Round Repertoire:  1) Major work of Bach, Beethoven, Haydn or Mozart - any baroque Prelude and Fugue or classical Sonata movement (without repeats) is acceptable;  2) any piece of contrasting style                         
  • Final Round Repertoire:  Same as above - if invited to perform live, the same preliminary repertoire must be performed during the final round.  The music should not exceed 20 minutes.

Preliminary Round: repertoire must be submitted by Youtube video links.  All works should be memorized.  A preliminary round jury will select performers to compete in the final live round in Boone, NC at the Hayes School of Music on the Appalachian State University campus.  

Preliminary round deadline:  Fall 2021 - Date TBD



Competition Application

You will complete a simple registration process, fill-in the required fields and pay the online fee.  After that, please email required documents as attachments:

  • One page biography - up to 300 words.  List your teachers, performances, awards and honors.
  • One letter of recommendation from your principal teacher.
  • Proof of school grade, such as a recent report card with date indicated. If homeschooled, please provide a transcript.  Either should be scanned and attached.

The above should be emailed - preferably as pdf documents -- to Competition Coordinator, Laura Chu Stokesstokeslc@appstate.edu

Non-refundable Registration Fee:  $35 Early-Bird;  $50 if received after September 2020

Invitations to the final live round contestants will be emailed by Friday, September 27, 2019.  All award winners must be available to perform during the Winners' Showcase Concert immediately following the Competition Awards ceremony.


Congratulations to the 2019 Award Recipients!

Saturday, October 26, 2019 - Final Round

1st Prize: Oscar Paz-Suaznabar - teacher: Marjorie Lee

2nd Prize: Trung Nguyen - teacher: Marjorie Lee

3rd Prize:  Cristian Makhuli - teachers: Dmitri Vorobiev / Paul Nitsch

4th Prize: Elizabeth Qiu - teacher: Marjorie Lee


Competition Sponsor: 

Lucy Chu is a recognized piano teacher and music educator with over sixty years of teaching experience.

A native of Shanghai, Lucy received her Bachelors and Masters music performance degrees from Indiana University and continued her studies at the Juilliard and Mannes Schools of Music. She has also performed as a guest artist with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. In 1989, she created and developed the E-Z Notes series of music teaching and learning tools, which are highly-regarded and endorsed by major composers and pedagogues.

Lucy's initiative to underwrite the Hayes School of Music Piano Competition stems from her commitment to furthering music education at the pre-college level. She says, "the Hayes School of Music Piano Competition has been one of the most gratifying projects that I have had the pleasure of being a part of in my many years of supporting the arts. It is wonderful to hear and meet these dedicated young pianists with such inspirational talent. I look forward to watching them develop as young artists in the future.”