The Kent International Piano Courses are fortunate to be able to employ highly qualified and experienced tutors to guide and support participants.
Mary Methuen Courses Director
Noriko Ogawa Chair (1st & 2nd days)
Ruth Gerald Principal Tutor
Ji Liu Head of Performance;
Head of Piano & Keyboard at Trinity Laban Conservatoire
Sue Greenham Head of Intermediate Course
Marcus Andrews Head of External Relations;
Teacher of Piano at Highgate School, City of London School for Girls and City Junior School
Stephen Dandridge Senior Tutor;
Head of Piano at Ashford School
Head of Keyboard Studies at Sevenoaks School (1st day)
Teacher of Piano at Sevenoaks School, Trinity School Croydon & Trinity Music Academy in Croydon (2nd & 3rd days)
Teacher of Piano at Tonbridge School (1st day)
Nancy Litten (1st & 2nd days)
Jinah Shim Accompanist and Administrator
Sophie Methuen-Turner Head of Pastoral Care
Elizabeth Grieg Relations Manager
You-Chiung Lin Accompanist and Administrator
Ruth Gerald, Senior Tutor
Ruth was Head of Keyboard Studies at the Royal College of Music and previously Head of Keyboard at the Birmingham School of Music. Educated in Australia, she gained a Bachelor of Music degree from Adelaide University and continued with post-graduate studies at the Royal College of Music where she was a gold medallist. Her career has always pursued a very wide path, solo recitals, concertos, chamber music, accompanying, adjudicating, examining and teaching. Alongside her work as a British and International Federation of Festivals Adjudicator, she has given master-classes and seminars in UK and abroad and is actively involved in many aspects of the work of ABRSM.
Stephen Dandridge, Senior Tutor
Stephen began to play piano at the age of 9 and went on to study with Joseph Weingarten (a pupil of Dohnányi) at Trinity College of Music, London. He has since divided his career between teaching and performing, giving solo and chamber music recitals and concerto performances across the country. Stephen tutors regularly on the Kent International Piano Courses and has given masterclasses for EPTA Kent. Stephen is Head of Keyboard Studies at Ashford School as well as being on the staff at Tonbridge School, St. Edmund’s School and Highworth Grammar School Ashford.
Stephen has composed music for theatre, including “Wild Child” by John Retallack, with Anna Calder-Marshall, and “I can’t remember anything’’ by Arthur Miller, with Anna Calder-Marshall and David Burke (Barn Theatre, Smallhythe). Stephen has also composed music for the film; “No Masks” for Sky Arts (2021)
Sue Greenham has been teaching piano for more years than she cares to think about. As well as organising and taking part in many informal concerts and charity concerts, she is co-founder and chairman of Maidstone Music Festival, an annual adjudicative music festival which takes place in Invicta Grammar School, Maidstone at the end of November. She lives and works in Maidstone, with her family and an assortment of cats.
Marcus Andrews, Tutor, Head of External
Marcus Andrews studied with Yvonne Dinwiddy, Simon Young and Neal Larrabee. He is a graduate of Trinity College of Music (now Trinity Laban) and the University of Connecticut where he was a scholar, and is winner of the Jaques Samuel Pianos TCM Prize, Harold Clarke Prize, Trinity Keyboard Silver Medal and TWIYCA Accompanist Prize. He has also benefitted from bursaries to take part in masterclasses at Dartington International Summer School and was invited to take part in the Fondazione Culturale Wilhelm Kempff Beethoven Masterclasses with John O'Conor.
Marcus has had an extensive career as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist and has broadcast and recorded in the UK and Finland. He is in demand as an accompanist and choral accompanist across all the London conservatoires and a number of international competitions. He also maintains a busy teaching career, with posts at Highgate School, City of London School for Girls, City Junior School and his own private studio.
Marcus took part in the Kent International Piano Courses as a teenager and has been honoured to return as a tutor and see his own students participate. He recently moved to Tunbridge Wells with his wife and two sons.
Tau Wey, Tutor
Tau Wey enjoys performing unusual yet captivating music. His eclectic repertoire is as likely to include fugues as folk music, sonatas as songs, and rondos as rags. The music he plays branches out into myriad directions, making connections to the sound worlds that people inhabit.
Born in Taiwan, Tau subsequently lived in Germany and then in England. After reading music at Cambridge, he studied with Yonty Solomon and Douglas Finch at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, and with Jacob Lateiner at Mannes College of Music in New York. He was awarded First Prize in the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe Competition. In recent years he has furthered his study of piano technique and the Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement Method with Alan Fraser.
He has performed at the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall and the Aldeburgh Festival of Music and Arts. He gave his London recital debut at Blackheath Halls in 2006, and his overseas debut at the Music Forum in Taipei, Taiwan in 2007.
He has performed concertos with the Lambeth Orchestra, Bromley Youth Symphony Orchestra, Cambridge University Symphony Orchestra, Cambridge University Musical Society Orchestra and the Evergreen Symphony Orchestra, Taiwan.
Tau is Head of Keyboard at Sevenoaks School, as well as teaching at Eltham College and at the Kent International Piano Course. Tau loves challenging students with unconventional artistic concepts and the performance of daring pieces of contemporary music. At Sevenoaks School he directs the annual Piano Showcase concert, which has included provocative works by composers Stephen Montague, Terry Riley, John Cage, Eric Satie, and Gyorgy Ligeti.
Ji Liu, Head of Performance
As a soloist, Mr. Ji Liu has appeared at major venues and festivals internationally including London's Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, Barbican Centre, St. John's Smith Square and etc; the St. George's Hall and the new Liverpool Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool; Birmingham's Town Hall, Sage Gateshead in Newcastle; Old Vic Theatre and Colston Hall in Bristol; RoyalConcert hall in Nottingham; Concertgebouw in Amsterdam; Auditorium du Louvre and Salle Cortot in Paris, Carnegie Hall in New York, Rachmaninoff Hall at Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, Salle Garnier Opéra de Monte-Carlo; Théâtre de Champ Fleuri in La Réunion; Shanghai Oriental Art Centre, Shanghai Concert Hall and the Grand Theatre in Shanghai; Suzhou Culture and Arts Center; Kumho Arts Hall in Seoul; the Henley Festival in the UK; the Stavanger Chamber Music Festival in Norway, Verbier Festival and Gstaad Festival in Switzerland, Tongyeong International Music Festival in South Korea; The 3rd Krasnoyarsk International Music Festival of the Asia-Pacific region in Russia and etc.
Last season, Mr. Ji Liu has played Schumann and Beethoven Piano Concertos with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Dorking Halls and the Royal Festival Hall in London; and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.2 with Mr. Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic at the sold-out Royal Albert Hall. Ji Liu was also the soloist who opened the 2015/2016 season for the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and its new Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.
In 2016, Ji Liu has made his warm welcome-back to the Royal Festival Hall playing Mozart Piano Concerto K.467 with the Mozart Festival Orchestra. Also, Mr. Ji Liu embarked a 5-city UK recital tour celebrating the new release of his Pure Chopin album.
As a hugely creative artist, Mr. Ji Liu has a rare and immense capability of playing music from Bach's Goldberg Variations to Ligeti Piano Etudes to his own transcription of Skyfall. His piano playing always embraces distinctive quality of devotion, originality, purity and authenticity. Mr. Ji Liu's passion for new music has led him collaborating with some of the greatest composers of our time. In 2016, he played the World Premiere of Ludovico Einaudi’s new piano concerto with Maestro Damian Iorio and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.
Mr. Ji Liu was born in China. He started his early musical education at the age of 3. Whilst still only 13, he won an international competition to perform a recital at New York's famed Carnegie Hall. That concert proved to be a major turning point in his career. Mr. Ji Liu initially studied piano and conducting at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, after which he studied under Dmitri Bashkirov at the Escuela Superior de Musica Reina Sofia in Madrid. In 2007, Ji Liu was awarded a full scholarship to continue his Bachelor of Music focusing on Piano Performance with Prof. Christopher Elton and Composition with Ruth Byrchmore at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 2013, he graduated his Master of Music with both a Distinction and a DipRAM for his extraordinary Final Recital from the Royal Academy of Music.
In his spare time, Mr. Ji Liu is enthusiastic about fashion, fine watches and visual arts. He likes sharp suits and unique shoes. Ji believes that classical music is for everyone, and one of his dreams is to make classical music more accessible and popular to a much wider audience.
Julie Cane, Tutor
Julie Cane is a piano and singing teacher and composer. She has been teaching for over 30 years. Julie grew up in London where she was lucky enough to receive all her instrumental lessons free, thanks to ILEA (Inner London Education Authority). She studied piano with Marie Gardner and oboe with Andrew Denyer, before going on to study piano and singing at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After a break from musical life to bring up her 3 children, Julie returned to studying piano and teaching with Viv Vere-Dresser. As well as teaching she has worked as a repetiteur in ballet schools, accompanist, and freelance pianist in ensembles and bands. For the past 8 years she has been composing choral works, which she is always delighted to hear performed by choirs both local and further afield. She has had successes in composing competitions - most notably as a finalist in the BBC Radio 3 carol competition, having her carol performed and recorded by the BBC Singers. Julie now lives in Kent and divides her time between teaching, accompanying, singing, playing tennis and looking after her lively 3 year old granddaughter.
Laetitia studied in France with Muza Rubackyte and at the Conservatoire of Cergy-Pontoise. She graduated there with four Gold Medals in piano, chamber music, music theory and analysis.
After obtaining the Postgraduate Diploma in Performance at Trinity College of Music, she studied piano accompaniment at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where she received the Master's degree in Music Performance. She took part in the Young Songmakers' Almanac with Graham Johnson, and in master classes with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau.
In 2002 she was awarded the first price (joint) at the Gerald Moore Award for accompanists in London. She has been one of the official accompanists of the Wigmore Hall International Song Competition.
Laetitia has performed widely as an accompanist in Europe in venues such as the Purcell Room, St Brides Church, St Clement Dane, the Foundling Museum, the Omnibus Theatre, the American Church in Paris, the festival Colla Voce in Poitiers and the Radio Suisse Romande in Geneva. She recorded a CD with violinist Survier Flores in 2016 and with the Trinity Boys Choir in 2019. Laetitia enjoys an eclectic career and performs a varied repertoire. Future and recent projects include piano trio recitals, a piano four hands recital in Paris, a chamber music project around J Brahms, Clara Schumann and C. Debussy, combining poetry and music for the festival "Klassik" in Brittany, song recitals in collaboration with visual art artists, an arrangement of the opera "Hansel and Gretel" by E. Humperdinck, and a tour in China with the Trinity Boys Choir. Laetitia is also volunteering for the Candle Project at St Christopher's hospice, using music therapy with bereaved children.
She is currently teaching piano at Trinity School (Croydon) and at Sevenoaks School and is an examiner for Trinity College London.
Nancy won an Arts Council award to study with Julius Isserlis in London at thirteen, and an open piano scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music at sixteen, winning prizes during her studies there. She has performed as a pianist in solo, orchestral and chamber music, and as a piano accompanist, being well known in Kent. She is an all-round musician, also having been a freelance orchestral violinist and leader of a string quartet.
Tutoring has formed a large part of her life, from beginners through to diploma level; she has taught privately and in many different types of school and on courses and masterclasses. She is an ABRSM examiner, an adjudicator for the British and International Federation of Festivals (serving on the adjudicators’ council) and was chair of EPTA (European Piano Teachers’ Association) UK’s Kent region for 13 years.
Alfred Music UK has published a range of her books: Keyed Up tutors for electronic keyboard, Playing with Colour tutors for violin, Choral and Vocal Warm-ups for Pianists, Choral and Vocal Sight Singing with Keyboard Harmony, and Rounds with Accompaniment. Her piano trio (piano, violin and cello) arrangements of famous piano pieces are Classical Vienna, and Romantic Vienna, and her pieces and arrangements can be found in the Trinity College London and ABRSM syllabuses (including The Sad Ghost at piano grade 3). EVC Music has recently published a book of her original piano pieces (grades 3-5) called Piano Postcards.
British-Korean pianist Jinah Shim began learning the piano at the age of five in Birmingham. During
her junior school years, she represented the Northfield Festival at the National Piano Festival in London and was a winner of the European Piano Teacher’s Association competition. At the age of
fourteen, she was the youngest finalist of the Glasgow International Piano Competition. After studying at the Birmingham Conservatoire Junior department, she then went onto study at the Guildhall
School of Music and Drama to study with pianist Martin Roscoe. Currently, she is pursuing doctoral research at Trinity Laban conservatoire.
Jinah has won prizes at both national and international competitions including Chandos Young Musician of the Year 2011, 1st prize at Christopher Duke International Piano Competition, 2nd prize at Brighton’s Springboard Concerto competition, House Concert Prize at Euregio Award International Competition, 1st prize at the Alexander Kelly Concerto Competition, 2nd prize at Tunbridge Wells International Piano Competition and 1st prize at John Longmire Competition. In 2019, she won the Mozart Memorial Prize where she was awarded the title of 'Pianist in association with London Mozart Players' as well as the Hannah Brookes Piano Prize at Trinity Laban for the ‘most advanced pianist’. Last year she won 1st prize at Alfred Kitchin Competition, in addition to the Audience Prize at Oleggio International Piano Competition. She also received the Kerr Memorial Prize at the Royal OverSeas League Competition for two years consecutively.
Notable past performances include performing concertos with London Mozart Players as well as directing Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 12 at the piano with Birmingham Junior Chamber Orchestra, aged 18. She has performed with a variety of orchestras including Southampton Concert Orchestra, Havant Symphony Orchestra, Petersfield Orchestra, Dorking Chamber Orchestra, Aylesbury Symphony Orchestra, and Winchester Chamber Orchestra. She also performed Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 at Birmingham Festival Orchestra’s inaugural concert. Jinah regularly gives recitals as a soloist and has performed around the UK including London’s Wigmore Hall, Steinway Hall, St. Martin-in-the-Fields and St. James’s Piccadilly Church.
You-Chiung Lin is an active solo pianist and chamber musician based in the United Kingdom. After graduating from Tunghai University in her native Taiwan, she was awarded a full scholarship to study with Piers Lane at the Royal Academy of Music in London and with Douglas Finch at the London College of Music & Media. She has appeared in masterclasses with Imogen Cooper, John Lill and Artur Pizarro amongst others. In addition to giving successful concerts at home and abroad, she has presented highly acclaimed recitals on various cruise lines. Her concerto performances have been greatly praised including regular return appearances with the Reading Symphony Orchestra and the Bristol Concert Orchestra. She also has frequent collaborations with conductor and pianist Stefan Hofkes in various ensembles. Her recordings include a selection of solo works by Chopin, Liszt, Mozart and a live performance of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No 2.
Mary Methuen, Courses Director
Mary Methuen is a concert pianist of many years' standing, who has given solo recitals in major venues in London, France and elsewhere. She is also regularly asked to accompany soloists.
Mary studied at the Royal Academy of Music under Professors Joan Last and Ruth Harte, and was trained in piano accompaniment by the celebrated Professor Geoffrey Pratley. Whilst studying she accompanied the soprano Lesley Garrett and worked alongside the now famous Sir Simon Rattle.
Now an international examiner for the ABRSM, Mary tours the Far East every summer, whilst maintaining a strong private teaching practice. She teaches the piano at Sevenoaks School and Tonbridge School, where she also trains students in aural techniques. Previously she taught at Kent Centre for Young Instrumentalists, a specialist music school for gifted children.
Mary has been Director of the Kent International Piano Courses for 30 years, over that time attracting internationally famous artists as Masterclass guests and performers, such as Moura Lympany, Cecile Ousset, John Lill, Noriko Ogawa, Cristina Ortiz and Artur Pizarro.
Her late father, a priest and her late brother a Dean, Mary also occasionally plays the organ. Her daughter is an actor and her husband an education consultant.
Ten years ago Mary was nominated onto the Women of Kent list, for women who have given exceptional service to the county.