Remarked in the Boston Globe for his "mesmerizing performance", Canadian pianist Barry Tan is enjoying a career as an active soloist, collaborative artist, and educator in Los Angeles, California. Most recently, Barry was a prize winner at the Vancouver International Music Competition, winning the prize for the Best Overall Performance of a Canadian work. He has performed as a soloist with the University of Victoria Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, the Harmonia Chamber Orchestra, the University of Southern California Symphony Orchestra, and the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra.
In addition to maintaining his private studio, Barry served on faculty at California Baptist University, Collinsworth School of Music. Previously, he was a studio teaching assistant to the piano faculty at the University of Southern California. His duties included lecturing group piano sequence classes to music and non-music majors, as well as private instruction to piano majors from the undergraduate to doctorate levels. His pedagogy expertise has been presented at the Florida State Music Teachers Conference, the California Association of Professional Music Teachers, and the MTNA National Collegiate Conference. Barry currently serves on the piano faculty at Pasadena Conservatory, as well as summer faculty at the Montecito International Music Festival, and Idyllwild Arts Academy.
In demand as a collaborative pianist in recitals, concerts, and recordings, Barry's work has led him to various performances and recordings with instrumentalists, choral groups, and singers throughout North America. Highlights include collaborating with members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and LA Opera, serving as competition pianist for the Primrose International Viola Competition in Los Angeles, the James Toland Vocal Competition in San Francisco, on staff at the Interlochen Arts Camp in Michigan, and the Sounding Point Academy at the Colburn School. As a collaborative artist, Barry currently serves on staff at the Colburn School and Santa Monica College throughout the school year.
In recent seasons, highlights include solo and collaborative performances throughout Los Angeles, Vancouver (the Chan Center), Victoria, Vancouver Island, Montana, Michigan, San Francisco, and in Massachusetts at the Tanglewood Music Festival- where he was given the opportunity to work and study with world-renowned artists such as Emanuel Ax, Leonidas Kavakos, Kiril Gerstein, Andris Nelson, and Yo-Yo Ma. He has recorded on IPR Radio WIAA 98.7FM at Interlochen's Studio A, had featured performances with the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra on the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO Now) streaming, as well as his performances at the Primrose Viola Competition, through the Violin Channel.
Barry has participated in various music festivals throughout North America and Europe, including the Montecito (Southern California), Young Artist Program at the National Arts Center (Ottawa), Victoria Summer Music Academy (BC), Mozarteum Academy (Salzburg), a Fall Residency at the Banff Arts Centre (Alberta), the Orford Musique Academie (Quebec), and the Tanglewood Music Center (Massachusetts) where he was a piano fellow.
As an active Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), Barry served as President for two consecutive years at USC during his doctoral studies. He has contributed to three volumes of e-journal articles, CAPMT Connect, for the California Association of Professional Music Teachers (CAPMT). His latest peer-reviewed article “Sight Reading for the Contemporary Pianist” was published in October 2022. He has been an adjudicator for the district 3 CAPMT spring festival, and is a currently active member on the west side of Los Angeles. His students have been recipients of local scholarships, competition prizes, RCM examination first class honors and distinction holders, as well as summer music festival acceptances.
Previously Barry studied at McGill University, Schulich School of Music, under full scholarship, and at the University of Victoria, where he was awarded the President's Scholarship, and graduated with distinction. He is grateful to have received funding from the BC Arts Council, the Vancouver Women's Musical Society, the Montreal Jewish Foundation, and the Vancouver Koerner Foundation. From 2017 to 2018, Barry worked as the Artistic Director at Place Des Arts’ Piano Chamber Music Program in Coquitlam, BC. He mentored several piano trios and two-piano ensembles for recitals, local festivals, competitions, and engagements in community events throughout the school. Barry recently received his Doctor of Musical Arts at the University of Southern California, Thornton School of Music in Los Angeles, where he was awarded the Most Outstanding Graduate in the Keyboard Studies Department.
In his spare time, Barry enjoys exploring new neighbourhoods in Los Angeles, film photography, watching A24 movies, and producing contemporary beats on Logic Pro X. Barry's music production work can be found at: @baresztrks. His most recent entertainment industry credits include, playing for a live audience of over 80,000 at Sofi Stadium for the WWE Wrestlemania 2023. This video performance has amassed over 1.5 million streams on Instagram. He has also been engaged with celebrity clientele for piano tutoring, and engagement on music video sets.
If interested to be part of Barry’s private studio, or for any engagements, please do not hesitate to fill out this form.
Collegiate, Academic record
- Courses Taught:
- Group Piano Non-Majors
- Group Piano for Music Majors
- Applied Piano individual instruction
- Graduate level Piano instruction
- Studio Teaching: Graduate and Doctoral Piano Performance Majors
- Chamber Ensemble Coaching
- Collaborative Assistant:
- Acting for Singers
- USC Concert Choir)
- USC Choral Conducting II Class
- Neurophonics: Choral ensemble of the USC Brain and Creativity Institute
- Musical Director, Chamber Opera at USC, Fall 2018, Spring 2019
- Collaborative Pianist for USC String, Woodwind, Vocal Arts, Musical Theater Instruction
- Colloborative Pianist for Cal Baptist University, Rhapsody and Camerata Choirs
- Collaborative Pianist for the 2021 Primrose International Viola Competition
- Collaborative Assistant for Graduate Performance Seminar at CBU
- Collaborative Pianist for Interlochen Arts Camp
- Collaborative Pianist at Colburn Conservatory in Strings and Woodwind Depts
- Lectures, Presentations, Publications:
- Allusions and Influences between Johannes Brahms, and the Schumanns: Lecture Recital
- CAPMT State Conference, Fall 2019: Game Pedagogy
- CAPMT State Conference, Fall 2020: Zoom Screen Sharing as a Teaching Aid
- FSMTA Conference, Fall 2020: Zoom Screen Sharing as a Teaching Aid
- CAPMT Connect, e-journal, Fall 2020, Volume 2
- MTNA National Collegiate Conference, Spring 2021: The Online Recital: Livestream vs. Pre-Recorded
- MTNA National Collegiate Conference, Spring 2022: The Gigging Student
- CAPMT Connect, e-journal, Fall 2022: "Sight Reading for the Contemporary Pianist" link here.
- Montecito Festival: Score Analysis for Efficient Sight Reading