Zoë Jones ’24 Selected for Master Class with World-Renowned Pianist

Zoë Jones, who studies piano with Mrs. Annette Curtis at Norfolk Academy, was selected for the Virginia Symphony Orchestra’s Master Class with Simone Dinnerstein, the world-renowned and best-selling pianist.

Zoë was one of only four pianists selected to perform publicly and then have their work critiqued and discussed by Ms. Dinnerstein over a 2-hour period during the master class. Three additional performers were music majors in college or graduate students in music performance.

Zoë was the first in that line-up to perform for Ms. Dinnerstein, an artist whose recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations launched her to international fame and concerts around the world. Zoë said that, prior to the class, she had assumed that there would be "about 30 students, and each of us would play for five minutes." She wasn't nervous until she saw the program with just four student performers listed for the two-hour session, so each of them would have a half-hour of scrutiny. 

She played the haunting Für Elise, Bagatelle No. 25 in A minor by Beethoven, and received some tips about "pedaling," pianist lingo for using  the foot-operated levers at a piano's base to change the sound, and about playing expressively. Zoë and her parents, Dr. and Mrs. Glenn and Trisha Jones, were invited to Ms. Dinnerstein’s performance with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra at Chrysler Hall that night, and they had seats that allowed for full observation of Ms. Dinnerstein's high-speed hands. From the perspective of one student critic, Ms. Dinnerstein's performance was "amazing!"

Bravo to Zoë and her teacher, Mrs. Curtis!