Irish pianist Brian Hughes moved to London in 2018 and recently graduated from the Royal College of Music as a Kenneth and Violet Scott Scholar with Distinction in his Master of Performance in Collaborative Piano.
Brian grew up in the small town of Dungarvan on the south coast of Ireland, and began playing the keyboard by ear at the age of 3. He began piano lessons locally aged 6, and went to the Cork School of Music to continue his piano studies in 2006.
Brian began teaching piano and flute in his hometown when he turned 16, and taught here for 8 years. His students ranged in age from as young as 7 up to adult students. Three of his piano students reached Grade 8 standard, and a number of his students have gone on to study music at 3rd level.
Brian received a 1st class honours degree from the CIT Cork School of Music in 2015. It was here that he developed the skills which influenced him greatly as a piano teacher, taking a Music Education module which focused on the Psychology of Music, Instrumental Teaching and Classroom Teaching.
He also developed his aural and musicianship skills to a very high level, engaging with the Kodaly Method and learning about counterpoint, harmony and composition. He also accompanied the University College Cork Choral Society for 5 years and sang in the Fleischmann Choir, and so singing plays a hugely important role in Brian’s musical life. He has twice been part of the Irish Youth Choir in 2015 and 2018, and is now a member of the London Philharmonic Choir.
During the two years of his studies in London, Brian specialised in a Keyboard Improvisation module with the award winning organist and improviser Sophie-Veronique Chauchefer-Choplin, who has been a hugely influential figure in his musical life. Improvisation has always been at the heart of Brian’s playing and his teaching, and he hopes to inspire his students with the ability to enjoy and explore improvisation at the piano.