Upon joining the full-time piano faculty at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, Aeolian Classics CEO Adam Neiman proposed the concept of the Aeolian Classics Emerging Artist Award, and with strong support from the CCPA, launched the inaugural competition in 2017.

The mission of Aeolian Classics, LLC is to produce and disseminate the music of the masters of today and tomorrow. This mission encompasses the core values encapsulated by CCPA’s Aeolian Classics Emerging Artist Award, tailored specifically toward promoting extraordinary young artists within the CCPA at Roosevelt University.

Unparalleled by any other American university or conservatory, the opportunity for a young artist or ensemble to compete to earn a debut CD on a major international label is rare and exceptionally valuable, and the award is augmented by the presentation of its annual winner in a concert tour throughout Chicago.

Given the rapid pace of today’s music world, it is increasingly valuable for a musician to have a means of distributing across all digital and physical platforms. Yet the prohibitive cost of high-level production renders it nearly impossible for a student to aggregate the necessary marketing materials to facilitate a world-class career in the performing arts. It was out of concern for this striking impediment that Adam Neiman aligned the cause of Aeolian Classics with the central tenet of Roosevelt University – social justice.

The annual competition provides a merit-based context for selecting its winner, and the competition is adjudicated by panel consisting of CCPA faculty and outside luminary musicians. Through Aeolian Classic’s joined efforts with the Center for Arts Leadership at the CCPA, the Emerging Artist Award additionally offers mentorship and overall career guidance in support of its winners.

The competition and award are now in their third cycle, and here is a list of its winners, past and present:

The next competition, open to any instrumentalist or ensemble enrolled at the CCPA, will take place in the spring of 2020, dates to be announced.

As a student of piano performance at the Chicago College of Performing Arts, I would like to share my experience as the winner of the Emerging Artist Award. The impact that this competition is having on my growth as an artist is of utmost importance. Recording a CD is one of the most difficult opportunities to find as a young musician, and the CCPA is one of the very few music conservatories in the world that offer this opportunity.

The experience of recording the CD album, dedicated to the music of Franz Liszt, was commanded by Mr. Neiman as the producer, whose support and dedication in order to guide me and to push me was crucial to convey the music in its finest detail.

The release of my recording is a product of, alongside my personal efforts as a student, Mr. Neiman’s commitment to the school and to the students, and the quality of it should speak by itself.

Pablo Suaste 

2017 Winner

Winning the AC Emerging Artist Award has reaffirmed in me what being a relevant percussive artist in today’s world is all about, and I am enormously grateful for the incredible opportunities afforded me by this prize. Being able to record a solo debut CD is a rare gift for a young artist, and the support that the CCPA has shown me will guide my career forward for many years to come.

Creating emotional responses via percussive instruments is something so integral to the human soul and what it means to be alive, so to combine percussion with an orchestra, a pianist, also transcribing from guitar to vibraphone has been a moving experience to say the least.

Logan Fox

2018 Winner