Piano and Collaborative Piano

“...adept at playing many different types of piano literature, having particular affinity for the music of the Classical period, especially that of Mozart, a composer in which he truly understood. Also, his technical mastery of the keyboard allowed him to easily perform the more difficult works of Franz Liszt and Sergei Rachmaninoff.” – Steinway Artist Joel Hastings

“The graduate of the Manhattan School of Music captivated the intimate crowd.” – Medicine Hat News

Canadian pianist and piano pedagogue Derek Zhi Guang Chiu enjoys an active professional career. A three-time recipient of Steinway & Sons Top Piano Teacher Award in Calgary (2016, 2018 & 2020) enjoys a successful international career as a performer, music educator, clinician, adjudicator and music consultant.

As a performer, Chiu has performed solo and chamber recitals throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe. Most recently he has performed at Biola University, California State University – Northridge, Showcase Pianos in Vancouver, Bishop’s University, University of Lethbridge and the University of Regina. His orchestral engagements have included performances with the Windsor Community Orchestra, Briercrest College Orchestra, Rockland Symphony Orchestras and The Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra. He has collaborated with artists Roberto Cani (concert master of the LA Opera), David Lakirovich (assistant concert master of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra), Meghan Jacoby (principal flute Chamber Orchestra Symphony by the Seas) and David Mitchell (clarinetist from the US ARMY Band).

Chiu is a leader in online music education and has presented online professional development workshops on remote music lessons to help music teachers make the transition from in person to online teaching at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. His workshops were attended by over 2000 music teachers in Canada and the United States. Chiu also consults teachers one on one to demonstrate online programs, resources and apps along with showcasing audio/visual hardware to enhance e-learning.

Chiu is a dedicated piano pedagogue who has presented pedagogical workshops on the utilization of technology in the teaching studio, cognitive practice, aural skills development, sight reading, Baroque performance practice, memorization of music. His academic lectures have explored the music of Bach, Chopin, Liszt, and Mozart. Chiu has presented at the Colorado State Music Teachers’ Conference, The Colburn School, The University of Windsor, Lakehead University and Providence College to name a few. Chiu is also a clinician for The Royal Conservatory of Music having presented workshops in Canada and The United States.

Chiu is a member of the online teaching team at Virtuosity.Online. The mission of Virtuosity.Online is cultivating curiosity, inspiring personal exploration for musician's practice, shared and online! He has led lectures on piano technique, motivating teenagers and a four-part series on teaching, studying and performing the keyboard works of Mozart for the new online music education platform.

Chiu resides in Calgary where he teaches in person and online. His piano students have earned scholarships to attend undergraduate and graduate music schools; have received gold medals from The Royal Conservatory of Music; and are prize winners at local, national and international piano competitions. Chiu is on the Faculty of the Cremona International Music Academy (Italy) and JVL Summer School for Performing Arts (Canada) and the Toronto Music Alliance. Chiu is a sought after master class clinician, ensemble coach, guest teacher, speaker and clinician.

In November 2013, he was awarded The Odyssey Award by the University of Windsor Alumni Association. The award recognizes alumni who are in the early years of their career path, having distinguished themselves through successes in career endeavors, notable achievements in their local community, or through a significant or innovative achievement in their professional or personal life. Chiu’s performance that evening was hailed as the “highlight” of the Alumni Association’s annual awards night.

His extensive training includes mentorship with notable Canadian teachers Dr. E. Gregory Butler and Joel Hastings at The University of Windsor. While in Windsor, Chiu had additional studies in piano pedagogy with Dr. Thomas Green, Chief Examiner of the Royal Conservatory of Music. Under the guidance of Solomon Mikowsky (featured in Benjamin Saver’s book The Most Wanted Piano Teachers in the USA) and Donn-Alexandre Feder at The Manhattan School of Music in New York, Chiu graduated with a Master of Music degree in 2003. During his studies at the Manhattan School of Music, Chiu was mentored in chamber music by pianist Daniel Epstein of the Raphael Trio and engaged in rigorous studies in Baroque and Classical performance practices with Kenneth Cooper, one of the world’s foremost music specialists in the music from those eras. Chiu has performed in master classes in Canada, Europe and the United States for Janina Fialkowska, Robin Harrison, James Howsmon, Lorrin Hollander, Ramzi Yassa, Cecilio Tieles, and Jesus Angel Rodriquez.

He is the Alberta Regional Representative for the Royal Conservatory and a member of their College of Examiners. Chiu was featured on CBC Music’s website on the topic of teens and piano lessons in November 2017.

To connect with Derek Chiu, please visit his website and his Instagram: @derekchiupiano.