Established 1981


Our Mission: PianoTexas International Festival & Academy is an arts organization that endeavors to bridge the gap between the music profession, the halls of academia, and the community.

PianoTexas is dedicated to keeping the great art of piano playing alive.

Van Cliburn

A portrait of Van Cliburn

Our History

PianoTexas International Academy & Festival, formerly known as the TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute, was founded in 1981 during the Sixth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Throughout the years, this event has evolved into an International Music Festival, renowned for its world-class solo, concerto and chamber music concerts. The International Academy has served as an important and beneficial avenue imparting musical insights and understanding of the professional music world to talented young pianists, while presenting special programs for dedicated teachers and passionate amateurs. PianoTexas is presented by the School of Music, TCU in collaboration with the Fort Worth Symphony Association.

The Young Artists Program is designed for gifted young pianists up to age 28 to experience the art of performing in a professional environment. Applicants from all over the world go through a stringent screening procedure from which 24 performers are invited on full tuition scholarships.  PianoTexas’s long-standing collaboration with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra allows several young artists to perform complete concertos in two public concerts. They also have wonderful opportunities for solo recitals and participate in master classes and private lessons. Chamber music, introduced in 2004, and the study of “Lieder” provides these talented performers with a unique variety of opportunities to further develop their skills.  Active observers are provided private lessons while the general observers together with other participants and the community are invited to all programs creating a superb festive atmosphere. 

The Teachers Program pioneered the creation of stimulating outlets for teachers to perform. Since 1991, the Festival has developed the idea of this unique “hands on” experience for teachers by providing opportunities to perform in solo recitals, concertos with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, chamber music with strings and participating in master classes and individual lessons. Lecture demonstrations and presentations together with our popular “Meet the Artists” series allow teachers to explore and discuss a large variety of music topics such as style, technique, methods and the art of teaching.

Established in 1996, PianoTexas' Amateurs Program is the first of such programs that is specifically geared to the special needs of amateur pianists. This program is designed for non-professional pianists, who maintain a passionate love of music while pursuing their livelihoods in other areas. It provides a perfect venue for them to improve their skills and offers valuable experience in public performance. The truly distinctive aspect of the program is the opportunity to perform with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. Together with recitals, chamber music opportunities, master classes,  and private lessons the program offers artistic and personal development with a view to bring out the highest potential in each participant in a joyous and caring atmosphere.

Starting in 2018, the Juniors Program is the newest addition to the well-established programs of PianoTexas and we are confident that it will emerge as a leading preparatory festival for younger students aspiring to learn and master the art of piano performance. It is an intensive program that provides invaluable experience of studying and interacting with esteemed musicians, discovering role models, and presenting wonderful performance opportunities.

PianoTexas is truly the place for everyone to come together to celebrate the magic of the piano and its infinite repertoire. The general public is invited to attend all its concerts and master classes and to meet the guest artists.  Its aim is to unite the community through the art of the piano. It matters not whether one is an active performer or passive listener, this Festival truly provides something for everyone in a wonderful atmosphere that truly makes Fort Worth the "Cultural Capital of the Southwest."

Tamas Ungar

Dr. Tamás Ungár

For forty years, PianoTexas has graced the world’s piano stage. That it has become a landmark event is thanks to the generosity and loyalty of its legions of supporters over the decades—individuals, corporations and institutions—and the energy and dedication of the well over two thousand participating pianists who have brought so much to our programs: our internationally renowned guest artists and immensely talented young performers, teachers, amateurs, and juniors.

Without the unswerving commitment of Texas Christian University and the School of Fine Arts, PianoTexascould not have maintained its strong and consistent presence over all this time. Personally, and on behalf of the entire PianoTexas community, I extend sincere thanks to Dean Richard Gipson, School of Music Director Dr. Kristen Queen, the present and past higher administration of the University, and my School of Music colleagues for giving so much of themselves, for so long, to make and keep our program as great as it is. 

Back in 1981, Van Cliburn expressed his wish to me that we should create a “Festival Experience” together, in which the Cliburn Competition and the TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute (as PianoTexas was then known) would collaborate closely, each enriching the other. From that day to this PianoTexas and the TCU School of Music have striven to realize the Master’s wish, working together with the Competition over shared programs, artists, venues and facilities, and we will carry this forward over the years to come.

We are poised now for a vibrant and wonderful PianoTexas in June 2021, firm in our belief that the pandemic will have abated before then in Fort Worth, across the USA, and around the world. We are monitoring the situation day by day and updates will be posted on this site as they become available to us.

In conclusion, I wish you, your loved ones and your colleagues continued health and safety over the coming months, and that your music will nourish you as it always has, and always will.

PianoTexas Academy

Young Artists





Thank you to our sponsors

PianoTexas is dependent upon the support of our gracious sponsors

  • NEA logo
  • Texas Commission on the Arts
  • TCU College of Fine Arts
  • Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra
  • Rockley Family Foundation
  • Collora Piano
  • Metroplex Piano
  • Classical 101
  • Fazioli
  • Bosendorfer
  • Kawai
  • Pramberger
  • Steinway and Sons
  • Yamaha

Past Festivals & Artists

Our rich history celebrates 40 years of making music.

View Past Festivals 


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The Festival truly provides something for everyone in a wonderful atmosphere that truly makes Fort Worth the "Cultural Capital of the Southwest."

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