headshot photo of Dr. Grace Fong

Dr. Grace Fong

Professor, Director, Keyboard Studies
College of Performing Arts; Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music
Expertise: Pianist; Chamber Music; Contemporary Keyboardist
Office Location: Bertea Hall 121
Phone: (714) 997-6895
Scholarly Works:
Digital Commons
University of Southern California, Bachelor of Science
Cleveland Institute of Music, Master of Arts
Cleveland Institute of Music, Doctor of Music


Dr. Grace Fong is a prize-winning pianist with an international career as a concerto soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and contemporary keyboardist. Praised as "positively magical" (Cleveland Plain Dealer), and "immediately a revelation" (Arizona Central), American pianist Grace Fong has gained critical acclaim in the United States, Canada, Europe, United Arab Emirates, and Asia. She has been featured at major venues from Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, to the Kennedy Center, Phillips Collection, Hollywood Bowl, Great Hall in Leeds, UK, Reinberger Hall at Severance Hall, the Liszt Academy in Budapest, Konzerthaus Dortmund, Germany. Radio and television broadcasts have included British Broadcasting Company, "Performance Today" on National Public Radio, WCLV-FM 104.9 in Cleveland, KUSC 91.5 FM in Los Angeles, the "Emerging Young Artists" series in New York. She has performed as soloist with the Halle Orchestra in the United Kingdom, the Polish Chamber Orchestra, the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, the Phoenix Symphony, Music Academy of the West Festival Orchestra, among others. In the 14-15 season, Dr. Fong made her debut as soloist with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Theater Orchestra at the National Center for Performing Arts, Beijing.

Described by one critic as possessing “technical brilliance, infectious energy and sheer enjoyment of music making” (BC News), Dr. Fong is a prizewinner of numerous international competitions, including the prestigious Leeds in the United Kingdom, Bosendorfer, San Antonio, Viardo in New York, and Cleveland. Special prizes have included “Best Performances” Prizes of Baroque, Classical, and Contemporary works, as well as the “Jury’s Selection” Prize. Dr. Fong is also the winner of one of America's most prestigious piano awards, the 2009 Christel DeHaan Classical Fellowship of the American Pianists Association, (the first female winner in 12 years).  She also won the Grand Prize in piano from the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts, thereafter named a "Presidential Scholar in the Arts", and presented with a medallion by the President of the United States at the White House. Other prizes include Gold Medalist for the Wideman International Piano Competition, the winner of the Music Academy of the West Concerto Competition, the winner of the Cleveland Institute of Music Concerto Competition, 1st Prize in the Los Angeles Liszt Competition, 1st Prize in the Edith Knox Performance Competition.

Born in Los Angeles, Dr. Fong did her undergraduate studies at the University of Southern California where she completed a double major and minor. At USC, Dr. Fong was awarded the prestigious Renaissance Scholar Prize, and was named "The USC Thornton School of Music Keyboard Department's - Most Outstanding Student - B.M." She completed her graduate studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Sergei Babayan who describes Dr. Fong as "not only a true artist and an exciting virtuoso, but a sensitive poet who can speak about the most important of subjects through the craft of her hands." Her teachers and mentors include Sergei Babayan, John Perry, Louise Lepley, Paulina Drake, and Norberto Cappone.

Dr. Fong is currently the Director of Piano Studies at Chapman University Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music where she is the Artistic Director of the Chapman University Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music President’s Piano Series. Awarded the faculty-excellence award at the Hall-Musco Conservatory, Dr. Fong is an enthusiastic supporter of the education of young musicians. She has served as guest artist and teacher at the Innsbrook Summer Festival, the New Hampshire Music Festival, the Salt Spring Piano Festival, the Montecito Summer Festival; Festival Les Recontres de Moita, Corsica; and the Schlern International Music Festival. She serves as adjudicator for various competitions and has been the pre-concert lecturer for the Innsbrook Institute Festival, the Chapman University Lectio Magistralis, and the Orange County Philharmonic Society. As a distinguished chamber artist, she has been invited to perform at the Ojai Festival, Sitka Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music International, the Missouri River Arts Festival, the Callian Festival, France; Musica in Collina Festival, Italy; Palais de Festivls des Congres de Cannes, France. In 2015, Dr. Fong serves as guest artist and faculty at the Mainly Mozart Festival in Miami, Lee University International Piano Competition and Festival, Reinhardt Piano Festival and Academy, and the Costa Rica Piano Festival. She also receives the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award from the Colburn School in Los Angeles.

Dr. Fong has embarked on a series of collaborations with dancers, filmmakers, fashion designers, artists, and also enjoys performing music that crosses the genres of classical, jazz and Latin lounge. She is a frequent guest artist with three-time Grammy nominee, Pink Martini, which has been described as the house band of the United Nations. With the group, Dr. Fong has shared the stage with some of America's top orchestras and figures, including the Cleveland Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony, the National Symphony Orchestra, NPR's Ari Shapiro and Emmy-award winner, Sesame Street. Other collaborations have included: a collaboration with dance choreographer, Alicia Okouchi-Guy (whose credits include Prince, Paula Abdul, Married With Children, The Oprah Winfrey Show, MTV, the New York Knicks City Dancers), on a project entitled “Grace,” involving live, solo piano and a dance trio; performance with Grammy-winning ensemble, the Parker Quartet; a filming in London for a music video by Oscar nominated & multi-award winning film Director Mike Figgis in collaboration with designers Jimmy Choo and Boudicca. The music video has premiered at the 2011 Barbados Festival as well as the 2011 Deloitte Ignite Festival at the Royal Opera House in London. Dr. Fong can be seen on BBC television and national PBS; she can be heard on the RED label, and on the Heinz label for Starbucks release.