Teaches in English, Spanish
California-born pianist Sebastian K. received the bulk of his musical training at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he was a standout both in the classroom and concert hall, and at New York University (NYU), where he graduated with top honors. His principal teacher in San Francisco was Corey McVicar, and in New York he received instruction and mentorship from Louis Karchin, Marilyn Nonken, and Nicholas Poelwijk. He has also participated in coachings and studio/masterclasses with William Wellborn, Bruce Murray, Richard Rodgers, Chia-Lin Yang, Amy Zanrosso, Jerri Witt, and others.
Beyond his primary work as a soloist, Sebastian has performed in multiple large and small ensembles, including orchestras, piano duets, and trios, and as an accompanist to vocalists and instrumentalists. In competition and performance settings, he has appeared in venues including the Caroline H. Hume Concert Hall, Sol Joseph Recital Hall, and Steinway Gallery in San Francisco; the Trianon Theatre in San Jose; and the DiMenna Center, Lang Hall, Carnegie Weill Recital Hall in New York. He was a finalist in the Ross McKee Piano Competition and is a two-time Gold Medal winner of the American Association for the Development of the Gifted and Talented (AADGT) International Music Competition. He has additionally received numerous academic and private awards in music performance and analysis, including the NYU Gustave Reese Memorial Prize and the Carol Joy Pace Harney Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Musical Arts.
Though his particular expertise is in classical music, Sebastian has performed in multiple contemporary settings, including for The Peanuts Movie Red Carpet premiere, as a guest pianist in the Fifth House Ensemble for the PlayStation® JourneyTM LIVE Experience, and for community events in his native California.
His teaching philosophy echoes that of pianist and music educator Ruth Slenczynska: to instill a love of music in students that pushes them to explore and learn. Accordingly, he is careful to tailor instruction to a student’s particular strengths and interests as a form of motivation, incorporating the remaining curriculum in appropriate doses along the way. He teaches all levels of classical and pop music, and beginner-to-intermediate level of jazz.