Canadian-American pianist Helen Kashap has been heard as a soloist with several major North American Orchestras. Described as, “Hands-down the most dynamic and exciting young pianist I’ve yet witnessed” (Canadian conductor Victor Sawa, Saskatoon Star Phoenix), Kashap is a two-time recipient of the major Canada Council for the Arts Professional Development Grant, an award given each year to a handful of Canada’s most promising artists. Kashap has performed extensively throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe and has been supported in her recordings projects by FACTOR Canada, Canada’s main recording foundation.
Making her debut in 2010 with the Saskatoon Symphony, Kashap performed Grieg’s Piano concerto in A minor to great acclaim: “Kashap is a gorgeously expressive performer… the audience leapt to their feet at the end with applause and offered Kashap an encore, a rare occurrence here.” (Saskatoon Star Phoenix) Two weeks later, Kashap was heard in concert with the Regina Symphony orchestra in a performance of Liszt’s Second Piano Concerto. Another success, “Kashap, an accomplished 23-year old Canadian pianist delivered an impressive performance of this challenging concerto, expressively eliciting the many musical ideas present in Liszt’s work from the piano.” (Regina Leader Post)
A recipient of several major awards and scholarships, Kashap has been named a prestigious Chalmer’s Fellow by the Ontario Arts Council and a Schulich Scholar (McGill University’s top Music/Academic award), and has gleaned research and study fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Williamson Foundation for Music, and the Saskatchewan Arts Board. Additionally, Kashap has been awarded top prizes at the Canadian Music Competition, The Kinsmen Competition, The National Knigge Competition (Vancouver), The North Bay Symphony Competition (Grand Prize Winner), The Saskatchewan Concerto Competition, the Saskatchewan Provincial Music Festival, the MidWest USA Piano Competition (Grand Prize Winner), and the Interlochen Concerto Competition.
An avid teacher and performer, Kashap has previously been a musician in residence at the Banff Center for the Arts, and has participated in festivals such as the Aspen Music Festival, the Banff Center for the Arts Piano Masterclass program, Toronto Summer Music Institute, the Amalfi Coast Music Festival (Italy), Music at Chateau d'Aix (France), Gijon Piano Festival (Spain), and the Interlochen Arts Camp. Throughout her studies, she has had the privilege of working with some of today’s most revered pianists and pedagogues including Menahem Pressler, Robert McDonald, Julian Martin, Marc Durand, Paul Roberts, Choi Hie-yon, Inna Faliks, Antonio Pompa-Baldi, James Giles, and Sara Laimon.
Kashap has been teaching extensively for the last ten years, including at conservatories and pre-professional institutions for musicians across Canada and the United States. She has experience teaching all ages, levels, and styles of musicianship, and finds joy in the challenge of tailoring lessons to each individual need and placement. Helen is an exclusive Steinway Educational partner and is constantly seeking to expand her knowledge and understanding of piano pedagogy.
Kashap holds a Master of Music degree in piano performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she was a recipient of the Cleveland Musical Arts Society Scholarship and a student of Antonio Pompa-Baldi and Emanuela Friscioni. She received her Bachelor of Music degree at McGill University in Montreal, QC under the tutelage of professor Sara Laimon and her High School Diploma from the Interlochen Arts Academy where she graduated with High honors and a specialization in Piano Performance. Helen is currently pursuing further graduate research in music at the University of Oxford.