Piano and Keyboard Studies

Whether you are a current or prospective piano student, parent or teacher, or a community member interested to learn more about Millikin’s piano program, we welcome you and thank you for taking the time to browse our webpage. We would be delighted to invite you on campus for a visit, piano lesson, or just to be acquainted – we are only one e-mail, letter, or phone call away!

A proud member of the All-Steinway Schools elite group, Millikin University School of Music provides state-of-the-art facilities and instruments, including Steinway & Sons pianos in all teaching studios, as well as an ample number of practice rooms reserved for piano students.

The piano faculty, consisting of international performing artists devoted to pedagogical excellence, offer continued support and guidance to their students while maintaining active careers as performers, adjudicators, and clinicians. In addition, we facilitate opportunities for Millikin piano students to interact with guest artists both on- and off-campus. During the last two academic years, the Keyboard Studies area presented over twenty piano concerts and masterclasses on campus.

We offer competitive scholarships to new piano students based on artistic proficiency, annual cash awards for current piano students, performing opportunities at Millikin’s concert halls and beyond, as well as access to the Millitrax Studios, where students can produce and release professional recordings.

The vision of the Keyboard Studies at Millikin is to guide students toward artistic and pedagogical excellence, through enthusiastic preparation for the reality of the contemporary music world, all within a healthy academic and artistic environment.

Piano Audition Requirements

Piano Performance Major candidates are required to perform all audition repertoire from memory. All other piano candidates are required to perform at least one piece from memory. Pianists interested in the commercial music degree will perform one classical piece and one jazz/commercial selection; they will also be asked to improvise.

  • Technique: All major and harmonic minor scales and arpeggios, four octaves, hands together, from memory. Sight-reading.
  • Repertoire: At least two classical pieces in contrasting styles, selected from the Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Twentieth Century repertoire.

To schedule a piano audition, please contact Ms. Hannah Krajewski, Audition Coordinator, at hkrajewski@millikin.edu.

More information

For further information about the piano audition process or the piano program, please contact Dr. Silvan Negruţiu at snegrutiu@millikin.edu.

Silvan Negruţiu, D.M.A.
Coordinator of Keyboard Studies

All-Steinway Schools demonstrate a commitment to excellence by providing their students and faculties with the best equipment possible for the study of music. That is why the only pianos owned by the institutions — from the practice room to the recital hall — are designed by Steinway & Sons.

Piano Faculty

Chung-Ha Kim, D.M.A.

chkimAdjunct Associate Professor of Music
University of Cincinnati,
College-Conservatory of Music (D.M.A.)
University of Cincinnati,
College-Conservatory of Music (M.M.)
Manhattan School of Music (B.M.)
PMC18; chkim@millikin.edu
Teaching Duties: Applied Piano, Piano Pedagogy, Preparatory Piano, Coordinator of Class Piano

Born and raised in Germany, Chung-Ha Kim began piano studies at the age of 6. She became a student of Prof. Barbara Szczepanska and continued piano studies with her in the pre-college division of the Robert-Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf . After graduating from the Kardinal-von-Galen Gymnasium in Münster-Hiltrup, Chung-Ha Kim moved to the United States and successfully completed a Bachelor of Music in New York and a Master of Music and a doctorate degree in Piano Performance in Cincinnati where she studied with Dr. William Black and Frank Weinstock. She remains active as a solo and a collaborative pianist with recent performances at the University of Louisiana (Lafayette), Steinway Piano Gallery (Springfield, IL), Millikin University (Decatur, IL), University of Chicago, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Harper College (Palatine, IL), Western Illinois University (Macomb, IL) and Radford University (PA). Dr. Kim has released two CDs: Maurice Ravel: Miroirs and A Palace of Strangers Is No City are available on iTunes, Amazon and via her website: http://chunghakim.com. She has published articles in Clavier and Piano Pedagogy Forum, the first online piano pedagogy journal. Her book review of David Schroeder’s Experiencing Mozart: A Listener’s Companion was published in the 2014 February/March-issue of American Music Teacher. Dr. Kim has been a member of Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) since 2004. She served as 1st vice president of the Illinois State Music Teachers Association from 2008-2011 and was named president of the Decatur Area Music Teachers Association (DAMTA) in 2009. Dr. Kim joined the National Federation of Music Clubs in 2012. Her students have won numerous competitions, scholarships and awards. Dr. Kim regularly adjudicates piano festivals and competitions. Her presentations and workshops on topics, such as Lowell Liebermann’s Gargoyles and performance anxiety elicit positive responses and discussions from her audiences. Chung-Ha Kim is a Steinway Artist. She currently resides in Decatur, Illinois with her husband and son.

Silvan Negruţiu, D.M.A.

snegrutiuAssociate Professor of Piano
Chair, Keyboard and Instrumental Studies

Shenandoah University (D.M.A. )
Royal Irish Academy of Music / Dublin City University (M.Mus.)
Romanian National University of Music (B.Mus.)
PMC206; snegrutiu@millikin.edu
Teaching Duties: Applied Piano, Chamber Music, Accompanying, Class Piano, Piano Literature


Hailed as “a startling and authentic pianist displaying rich imagination and brilliant vigor, whose precision and splendor of keyboard sound certainly inspire a transcendental reality” (The Musical News Journal, Bucharest), Silvan Negruţiu has established himself as one of the leading musicians of his generation.  He has performed on major international stages, from the Kennedy Center in Washington DC to Ireland's National Concert Hall, the Romanian Athenaeum in Bucharest, the Xi’an Concert Hall in China, the Showa Recital Hall in Tokyo, and the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.  

A laureate of numerous international piano competitions, including the Rome and Salerno (Italy), the Seiler (Bulgaria), the Feis Ceoil (Ireland), and the Konzerteum (Greece),  Silvan Negruțiu has appeared as soloist with prestigious orchestras, such as the Romanian Radio Chamber Orchestra, Alicante Philharmonic, George Enescu Philharmonic, and Dublin Symphony Orchestra.  He is the recipient of the 2016 Rising Star Award from Shenandoah Conservatory, the 2009 Gaiety Award in Ireland, the Romanian Government Fellowship in 2007, the Romanian Ministry of Education and Research Award of Excellence in 2002, and the 2001 Eugen Barbu Award for excellence in performing activity.  

In high demand as a performer, clinician, adjudicator, and speaker, Silvan Negruțiu appears frequently as an artist-teacher at international music festivals across Europe, America, and Asia.  He has been praised for his innovative programming in concerts and recordings, which often combines mainstream and rare piano repertoire.  He promotes the music of Romanian composers, with a primary focus on George Enescu and Constantin Silvestri.  In May 2020 he performed two virtual concerts at the invitation of the George Enescu National Museum in Bucharest as part of their Online Recital Series, celebrating the anniversaries of Enescu and Silvestri.  This season he is also presenting a series of all-Beethoven recitals, marking the German composer’s 250th anniversary.

Silvan Negruțiu has commissioned and premiered new music, most recently performing and recording the world premières of Robert Chumbley’s Five Bagatelles and Zack Stanton’s Concerto for Piano and Wind Ensemble.  His new album, featuring piano bagatelles by Beethoven, Alexander Tcherepnin, Carl Vine, and Robert Chumbley, will be released by Centaur Records in 2021, while his recent collaboration with Japanese violinist Akemi Takayama on the album Carl Roskott: Works for Violin (Centaur Records, 2018) has garnered rave reviews, including a Silver Medal for Outstanding Achievement by Global Music Awards. 

As an artist, a teacher, and a scholar, Silvan Negruțiu embraces the exploration of rare piano literature, along with the advancement of arts entrepreneurship in higher education.  He holds degrees from Shenandoah Conservatory in Virginia (D.M.A.), the Royal Irish Academy of Music and Dublin City University in Ireland (M.Mus.), and the Romanian National University of Music in Bucharest (B.Mus.).  Silvan Negruțiu is currently an Associate Professor of Piano and Chair of Keyboard & Instrumental Studies at Millikin University School of Music.  Prior to this appointment, he taught at Shenandoah Conservatory and at the Royal Irish Academy of Music.