"lovely and lyrical"
(The Herald Times)
“a very thoughtful and sensitive musician – he has a bit of old-school elegance that is increasingly rare.”
(The Chautauquan Daily)
Hailed as “a phenomenal pianist who brings a spontaneity and passion to his performance that seems almost improvisational” (The Republic, 2019), Tim Stephenson has performed widely in the United States as both a soloist and a chamber musician.
Based in Indianapolis, Stephenson made his professional Midwest debut in February 2019 with the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, performing Grieg’s piano concerto under the baton of Dr. David Bowden. He has worked with several renowned conductors, including Timothy Muffet and Thomas Wilkins, with whom he gave a performance of Beethoven’s first piano concerto that The Herald Times deemed “lovely and lyrical.” (2017)
Having received top prizes in over a dozen international and local competitions, Stephenson has been named the winner of the 2018 Indianapolis Matinee Musicale Competition, 2018 Jacobs School of Music Concerto Competition, and 2017 Chapman-Neeson Piano Competition, as well as honorable mention at the 2019 International Odyssiad Keyboard Competition. His past accomplishments include first place in three FSMTA competitions and a Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society Certificate of Honor in recognition of outstanding achievement in the field of music.
An avid collaborator, Stephenson has appeared frequently as a chamber musician and orchestral pianist for the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic and Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra. As an advocate for new and diverse music, past projects include commissioning a violin-piano duo work from Malaysian composer Shao Teo Fern and premiering it alongside other modern duo works in a showcase recital at Carnegie Hall in 2017. Stephenson has also worked with renowned Canadian composer Vivian Fung to produce a recording of her 2012 piece Birdsong. Stephenson is a founding member of B&T Piano Duo with pianist Nicha Stapanukul, together pioneering a live-stream recital series during the summer of 2020 to reach audiences facing quarantine and self-isolation.
An artist with wide-ranging interests, Stephenson was a founding member of the award-winning jazz combo Cofield and he earned a place in the semi-finals of the 2009 Jacksonville Jazz Amateur Competition as a soloist. Having worked with saxophonist John Ricci, Stephenson has appeared in big band masterclasses with Wynton Marsalis and Marcus Roberts. He is also an experienced church and dance musician and appears frequently in Central Indiana as a gig musician.
Stephenson is trained as a horn player, having studied with Aaron Brask of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. He has earned several accolades as a soloist and has performed alongside notable ensembles such as the London Symphony Orchestra and the US Army Materiel Command Band.
A dedicated music educator, Stephenson has held faculty positions at Indiana University’s Jacobs Academy, DC Strings Workshop, Stafford Piano Academy, Pacific Piano School (San Jose), and Aspen Music Festival and School’s PALS program. He is also an active member of the Music Teachers National Association and College Music Society, presenting frequently at national teaching conferences. Stephenson’s students describe him as a “highly personable” teacher who articulates “great methods for technique, memorization, and musicality.”
Along with an active teaching and performing schedule, Stephenson has developed a wealth of experience as an arts administrator, with positions in fundraising, marketing, event planning, operations, and more. He currently serves as Assistant Director of Individual Giving at the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.
Stephenson is a doctoral candidate at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, having studied with renowned pianist and teacher Norman Krieger. He received his undergraduate and master’s degrees under the tutelage of Dr. Read Gainsford at Florida State University. He has also worked with celebrated artists such as André Watts, Hyun-Kuan Chen, Paul Schenly, and Anton Nel. Stephenson has appeared in masterclasses with Jerome Lowenthal, Paul Lewis, Ian Hobson, Alexander Gavrylyuk, Logan Skelton, Alexander Korsantia, Arnaldo Cohen, Robert Blocker, Virginia Weckstrom, and Lisa Moore, with summers at Aspen Music Festival and School, Pianofest in the Hamptons, Chautauqua Institution, and Brevard Music Festival.