Refine your craft as a career concert pianist with a personalized, mentorship-driven Artist Diploma.

Imagine a year-long program of one-on-one piano instruction, career mentorship and personal guidance with one of the industry’s most versatile and creative solo artists. That’s the Gabriela Montero Piano Lab, by OAcademy.

Open to 9 outstanding pianists from around the world, ages 16 and above.


About Gabriela Montero

“Montero’s playing has everything: crackling rhythmic brio, subtle shadings, steely power in climactic moments, soulful lyricism in the ruminative passages and, best of all, unsentimental expressivity.”
The internationally acclaimed Venezuelan pianist, composer and improviser Gabriela Montero embodies the age-old spirit of the socially engaged virtuoso-composer and improviser. A Grammy-nominee and Latin-Grammy winner as both pianist and composer, Gabriela Montero is a Chopin Competition Laureate and the first artist to be appointed Honorary Consul of Amnesty International, in recognition of her musically creative work in the field of human rights. She regularly appears on the world’s most celebrated stages – from the Vienna Konzerthaus to Wigmore Hall, from the Hollywood Bowl to Carnegie Hall – and plays with the world’s most distinguished orchestras and conductors. Her chamber partners include Martha Argerich, Martin Fröst, Gautier Capuçon and – at the 2009 inauguration of US President Barak Obama – Itzhak Perlamn, Anthony McGill and Yo-Yo Ma.

Hear Montero’s esteemed colleagues Gautier Capuçon and Ingrid Fliter share what makes her such a visionary and inspiring artist.

2022 Piano Fellows

Viviana-Zarah Baudis

Germany & Czech Republic
Viviana-Zarah is currently studying with Jura Margulis at the Musik und Kunst Universität Wien. At the age of 16 she won a full scholarship at the Yehudi Menuhin School in London where studied under the tutelage of Marcel Baudet. She had her orchestral debut with the Bayerische Rundfunkorchester in 2018 and had her debut with Igudesman & Joo and the London Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall in London in 2020. Furthermore she has performed solo concerts in the Wigmore Hall, Konzerthaus Berlin and the Philharmonie Gasteig in Munich.

Dmytro Choni

Dmytro Choni was born in Kyiv, Ukraine in 1993. He is currently studying with Prof. Dr. Milana Chernyavska at the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz. His debut album was released by Naxos in 2020, containing works from the 20th century by Debussy, Ginastera, Ligeti and Prokofiev and was highly acclaimed by international critics. Dmytro performed in Wigmore Hall, Salle Cortot, Minato Mirai Hall, Auditorio Nacional de Música and Teatro Colón.

Ana Gabriela Fernández

Bio coming soon

Rafael Lipstein

Rafael Lipstein is a German/Argentinian pianist with a passion for conducting and Feldenkrais. He graduated from the Universität Mozarteum Salzburg. He won 25 awards in competitions such as the International Piano Competition Sanremo, Concours Flame Paris, Berlin International Music Competition, Suzhou International Piano Competition etc. and performed in the Oriental Arts Center Shanghai, Peking University, Herkulessaal München, Kölner Philharmonie and Tonhalle Düsseldorf. Rafael is a piano teacher at the Zakhar Bron School of Music Zurich.

Darío Meta

Darío Meta is a Spanish pianist, passionate about musical dissemination in society and the creation of new audiences for music. Born in Madrid in 1992, he has studied music in Spain and Germany and played internationally, in venues like Teatro Real in Madrid, Laeiszhalle in Hamburg or Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, to name a few. He collaborates with the public Spanish Radio and Television and Yamaha Music Spain. A large part of his current activity consists in commented concerts for all audiences.

Filip Michalak

Filip Michalak is a professional pianist born in Denmark. He is a winner of numerous competitions and holds degrees from Copenhagen, Stockholm and Manchester. Currently he is an Artist in recidence at the Ingesund Piano Center in Sweden. Filip has recently performed Beethoven 5 with Shrewbury Symphony Orchestra and future engagements include a China tour and a CD recording.

Aristo Sham

Hong Kong & China
Hailed by the New York Times as a pianist “whose playing combines clarity, elegance and abundant technique,” Aristo has performed for dignitaries such as Prince Charles, and collaborated with orchestras such as the London Symphony Orchestra under Sir Simon Rattle. Aristo has also won prizes at competitions including Gina Bachauer, Dublin, Clara Haskil and Casagrande. Aristo holds a Bachelors of Arts from Harvard University and a Masters in Piano Performance from New England Conservatory.

Aurelia Shimkus

Bio coming soon.

Tony Yang Yo

Canada Yang
Tony Yang is a Canadian pianist from Toronto, Ontario with a passion for entrepreneurship and story telling. Tony is currently finishing up a Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Harvard University, while pursuing a Master in Piano Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music. Tony is the youngest-ever prizewinner of the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw, having won 5th prize at the age of 16 at the XVII edition (2015). Tony has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the Fort Worth Symphony, among others.

About the Lab

“If I could do it all again, I would start by finding a professional mentor.”

— Gabriela Montero —

Learning centered on mentorship

The Gabriela Montero Piano Lab is designed to connect rising pianists to professional musical life by learning from one of the world’s leading soloists and composers — someone who not only plays at the highest level but has also built and sustained a multi-dimensional, international career in music.

Drawing upon three decades at the forefront of the concert world, Gabriela’s guidance for each Piano Lab Fellow is individually curated and deeply personal, taking each participant on a holistic journey.

Conceived as both a compliment to other training programs as well as an education in itself, the Piano Lab gives Fellows rare insight into the life, career challenges and decision-making journey of a leading concert soloist.

OAcademy Artist Diploma

Tailored to the busy lives of rising musicians on-the-go, The OAcademy Artist Diploma is a fast-track professional certificate that prepares rising artists for the complex demands of an evolving performance industry. 

In addition to the Gabriela Montero Piano Lab’s core mentorship elements, Fellows benefit from access to a range of enhanced resources offered though OAcademy, including networking opportunities, personal growth modules, entrepreneurship classes, and more. 

All Fellows who successfully complete core modules and projects of the Lab are awarded an Artist Diploma.

Artist diploma core experience

Supplemental training

What a treat to be part of Gabriela’s Piano Lab at OAcademy.

— Dmytro Choni | Ukraine

I’m still processing the incredible things we’ve experienced in Gabriela Montero Piano Lab classes. Still on cloud nine.

— Ana Gabriela Fernández | Cuba

Wonderful experience!

— Aristo Sham | Hong-Kong & China

Under Gabriela's guidance, I've overcome my fear of playing Mozart, and learned to express my inner truth and purpose. Wonderful and inspiring experience.

— Viviana-Zahar Baudis | Germany & Czech Republic


GMPL Scholarship Fund

Financial Assistance
The Gabriela Montero Piano Lab maintains an all-scholarship policy. Through the generous support of its lead benefactor, the Piano Lab provides merit-based, full-tuition scholarships to all participants regardless of their financial situation. For the 2023 year, the value of this 12-month scholarship is assessed at $15,300. No financial aid application is required for the full-tuition scholarship. In total, 9 full scholarships are to be awarded for the 2023 Piano Lab.

Comprehensive Fee
A required Comprehensive Fee of $2,950 is payable to OAcademy by all Piano Lab Fellows upon entry into the 12-month program. The Comprehensive Fee covers the following:

How to apply

The Gabriela Montero Piano Lab is open to pianists worldwide of 16 years old and above. Pianists must exhibit strong professional potential, but no degree is required to apply.

To apply, simply submit a maximum of 3 recent video recordings that showcase your proficiency and individuality as a pianist in the most complete way that you can. The repertoire choice is free. Be sure to offer contrast between the pieces or movements selected with respect to character, epoch, style, virtuosity etc.

Remember, Gabriela Montero is a creative artist whose expertise will benefit imaginative, creative and dynamic young musicians. The audition process will diligently select the most suitable 9 “matches,” those applicants most likely to benefit from the GMPL's creative ethos.


There is no cost to apply. For costs associated with participating, see the GMPL SCHOLARSHIP FUND

The GMPL starts in January 2023 and ends in December 2023. The time needed to complete the learning journey is tailored to each individual's unique needs, potential, and trajectory. If extending beyond the core 12-months, this extended completion date will be jointly determined by Montero and each Fellow.

The learning experience with Gabriela Montero begins online with the option for in-person coaching. The combined experience amounts to a minimum of 12 hours of one-on-one training with Gabriela plus additional online activities with both GMPL and OAcademy. If electing to travel to study with Gabriela Montero in person on mutually agreed dates, travel costs and local living expenses are the responsibility of each participant. Minors are welcome to bring a parent or guardian on such trips.

Beyond core one-on-one lessons with Ms. Montero, Fellows will have an opportunity to join a selection of activities from OAcademy and the Global Leaders Program, tailored to their individual needs and interests.

Healthy piano technique, artist leadership, creative engagement, and career guidance. Many people are held back by their own limiting beliefs – they become trapped in a cycle and become convinced they're unable to accomplish their goals. Gabriela Montero Piano Lab — through holistic musical training — will help Fellows not only excel as performers, but identify those beliefs and break patterns that are holding them back.

Fellows receive an Artist Diploma at the end of the Gabriela Montero Piano Lab.

GMPL is not a conventional academic/conservatoire curriculum/course. The Lab is tailored to each individual potential, simultaneously supporting human development through both personal and professional goals from the perspective of a 360-degree concert artist. It is a unique and innovative journey combining collaboration and mentorship from one of the most successful musicians of our times. The repertoire will be jointly determined by the accepted Fellow and Montero, depending on individual needs of each participant.

Each fellow will receive 12 hours of one-on-one tuition with Gabriela Montero during the 2023 calendar year. These sessions, averaging one 90-minute session per month, will be scheduled to fit both Gabriela Montero's performance schedule and each fellow's individual scheduling needs, by way of OAcademy's centralized calendar system. Based on their own availability, Fellows will be encouraged to join OAcademy sessions, and go through OAcademy Reflective Leadership Training (not more than 2 hours every few weeks).

  • Internet
    Having access to reliable Internet access and a functioning device is essential to participate successfully in the GMPL.
  • Device
    While it is possible to connect using smartphones for extra workshops and lectures, any activities involving instrument playing require access to either tablet or computer.  
  • Auxiliary audio equipment
    All accepted Fellows must have access to headphones. External microphones are highly recommended.
  • Software
    OAcademy and GMPL sessions are accessible via Zoom.  Other software might be required, but will be communicated in due course. Fellows are not required to purchase any licenses to use software required for participation.

For all activities with Gabriela Montero, participants can choose to communicate in either English or Spanish. Activities as well as all communication with the managing teams of OAcademy and GMPL will only be held in English.

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