Young pianist takes a big step toward the future


Story by Diana Whittle
Photo by Billy Hardiman

eric_piano1At this point in his young life, Eric
Lin seems to have all the right
pieces in place for what could
be a lifelong career as a professional
pianist. Whether the hard work that
still lies ahead will alter his direction,
no one can predict—including him.
In the meantime, without having
to face such a decision just yet, the
Corona del Sol High School junior will
share his musical virtuosity in a piano
recital at 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, on
the ASU campus in Katzin Concert
The talented teen earned first place
honors in the 2013 Steinway Avanti
Future Star Piano Competition held
last spring in Scottsdale, along with
winning the concert appearance and
$750. Lin competed in the senior
category, for youth between 15 to 18
years old, and played two pieces of
contrasting styles to showcase his
All the competitors are Arizona
youth and judged by a jury of music
professors and professional musicians.
In previous piano competitions
sponsored by Yamaha Pianos, the
Arizona Musicfest, and the James
Anthony, Schimmel, and Keogh
foundations, Lin also earned top
prizes. He studies with local piano
teacher Hong Zhu.
While playing solo can be a bit
nerve-racking, Lin says he finds live
performance to be “overall a pleasant
He practices about two hours a
day to keep his skills honed and looks
forward to sharing his interpretation of
classical music with the audience.
“The concert should last about
45 minutes,” said Lin. “It’s really an
honor for me to have the chance to play
in that hall.”
In addition to this performance, Lin
is scheduled to play at 4 p.m. Sunday,
Feb. 16 at the Central United Methodist
Church in Phoenix.
He favors music by the renowned
composer Frederick Chopin for its
beauty. As for a living performer,
he considers Swiss pianist Krystian
Zimerman his current favorite for
Zimerman’s skillful playing techniques.
Lin, now 16-years-old, started
playing the piano at age six after
watching his older brother perform at
the keyboards.
“My brother is a role model for
me,” said Lin. “He’s now a college
student in St. Louis at Washington
University. I also am fortunate to
have two very loving, caring and hardworking
He jokes, “I also have one younger
brother—my dog Sparky.”
The family lives in Tempe, where Lin
attended Kyrene del Cielo Elementary School
and Aprende Middle School.
As for the future, Lin is uncertain if he wants
to undertake the rigors of a career as a concert
pianist. He thinks he may prefer a job in the
medical field. But he is certain that his love for
playing the piano will continue.
“For me, playing the piano brings sort of a
feeling of peace and harmony to my heart. If I
am feeling sad, I can play the piano and it will
help me to change my emotional outlook.”



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