Dr. Ji Sook Park is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area. She studied under Bach specialist Dr. Sharon Mann, who is currently on the piano faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory. While studying with Dr. Mann, she won many Bay Area piano competitions, including Music Teachers National Association, the Bach competition, the US Open Piano Competition, and a concerto competition. She was a recipient of the Concord Pavilion Scholarship in 1997 and Ross McKee Foundation Fellowship in 2002.
During her high school years, she was selected to work with Robert Shannon and Peter Tackás at the Oberlin International Piano Festival and Competition and was accepted to the Aspen Music Festival to study under John and Antoinette Perry. She attended the New England Conservatory and studied with Gabriel Chodos during her undergraduate program, receiving a special piano department scholarship and a scholarship to the Aspen Music Festival. Continuing at the New England Conservatory, she studied with Patricia Zander for her master’s degree. She was accepted to many chamber music festivals as a fellowship student, including the Colorado College Summer Music Festival, the Hot Springs Music Festival, and the Garth Newel Summer Music Festival. She went on to the University of Wisconsin–Madison for her doctoral degree and studied under Christopher Taylor, majoring in piano performance with a minor in opera coaching/accompanying. During her doctoral degree, she was hired to teach at Leysin American School in Switzerland as a piano instructor.
After her doctoral program, she was hired to teach at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, a prestigious conservatory, as an artist-teacher. There, she supervised the entire piano program and concertized with the Faubourg string quartet regularly. She also served as an adjunct piano professor at the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, teaching undergraduate and graduate piano majors. After three years in New Orleans, she briefly worked as a staff accompanist at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and then moved to Oklahoma to teach at Oklahoma Panhandle State University as a visiting instructor of music and an accompanist. In 2014, she was invited to be a full-time lecturer at UCSI University’s Institute of Music in Kuala Lumpur. During her time in Malaysia, she taught various classes and adjudicated for the Hong Kong International Piano Competition, Malaysia Preliminary Round. She also served as a committee member for the UCSI International Piano Competition and Festival in 2014. Between 2016 and 2017, she taught at the Pacific Piano School in San Jose, California, where she taught students from the age of 5 to graduate students, with the primary focus on their technique, musicality, and theory development.
Many of her students have won major national and international piano competitions and performed in major concert venues. One of her students, Jeremy Yeo, won first prize at the American Protégé Piano Competition and was invited to compete at the International Franz Liszt Piano Competition in Beijing. He also won second prize at the UCSI International Piano Competition in Kuala Lumpur in 2014 and was the first Malaysian piano student to perform with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, participating in the concert of Saint-Saëns’ The Carnival of the Animals. Other students have won first place at the DeBose National Piano Competition, the Junior Philharmonic Irving Carr Award from the Louisiana Philharmonic Concerto Competition, and the Music Teachers National Association Southern Division.
She is currently teaching at the Music Institute of North Texas and is the accompanist for Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. She also creates online music program courses for Georgia Military College. She is thrilled to be part of the piano faculty at the Lotus Chamber Music Festival and to be working with many talented young students from all around the world.