Faculty Spotlight: Manon Hutton-DeWys

She’s a finalist in the Pittsburgh Symphony Concerto Competition; has performed at some of the most revered venues in the city, including Carnegie Hall and Symphony Space; she has taught students young and old—and she is only 27. For such a youthful professional musician, Manon Hutton-DeWys has been making noticeable waves in a city where so-called professional musicians are as ubiquitous as Starbucks.

That may be so, but Hutton-DeWys, a pianist steeped with talent and drive, has set herself apart as an up-and-coming artist that stands to have great impact in the New York music scene.

Unlike some, she did not always dream of being a professional musician. Not until age 15 when she met Germán Diez, renowned chair of the Piano department at Greenwich House Music School, was she inspired to pursue her music career seriously.

Under his tutelage, she blossomed into a most talented performer, studying the traditional masters, like Beethoven and Chopin, who remain among her favorite composers. Today, Hutton-DeWys relies on this classical training to inform her work, using that foundation as a springboard to explore different genres. As a professional, Hutton-DeWys feels that New York City is “the place to be.” However, “It’s very difficult to build a performing career, no matter where you are,” she continued. “I always knew that I would have to be doing other things, like teaching.”

She feels fortunate to have found such a special community at Greenwich House. “There’s a long tradition of excellence at the school,” Hutton-DeWys said. “It’s a nice, comfortable place that provides many opportunities for young musicians like me.”

She finds it beneficial to be in a community of other teachers, as opposed to solely conducting private lessons around the city, though she does on occasion. “We talk to one another and can share tips about what works and doesn’t.” Mostly though, Hutton-DeWys strives to challenge her students at a level that’s appropriate for each individual; she finds value in encouraging a new generation of music lovers. They may not all become professionals, but in her mind, she is helping to grow future concert-goers and people who appreciate the craft.

“I learn a lot from teaching,” she continued. “It’s a great way to study the process of playing music, and to re-examine my own playing and learning styles in a focused environment.”

Her playing, she says, is at a level never accomplished before, largely in part thanks to her preparations for the Pittsburgh Symphony Concerto Competition. She is among four finalists selected from a group of more than 100 and will perform Beethoven’s Third Concerto.

Commitment, dedication and time management skills have all been crucial to Hutton-DeWys’ success. While she enjoys performing, she is also dedicated to teaching, working on her Ph.D and on other projects, including her first CD of solo material, expected to be produced in the next few years.

Catch Manon Hutton-DeWys in concert around New York

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