American-born Australian pianist Reuben Johnson has repeatedly proved himself as a versatile and sensitive musician in both collaborative and solo endeavours. In 2023, Reuben is undertaking his second year at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), continuing his studies with Timothy Young.
Reuben prides himself on the range and breadth of this musical interests and experiences. Aside from playing much canonical and lesser-known repertoire, Reuben has also performed and recorded the premiers of works by several Australian composers including Nicole Murphy and Frankie Dyson Reilly.
In 2021, Reuben graduated from the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University with a Bachelor of Music, under the tutelage of Oleg Stepanov. Throughout the last several years, Reuben has also received lessons and masterclasses from pianists such as Natasha Vlassenko (Russia/Australia), Daniel de Borah (Australia), Peter Hill (UK), Gil Garburg (Israel/Germany), Alexander Strukov (Russia), Konstantin Shamray (Russia/Australia), Jayson Gilham (Australia/UK) and Paavali Jumppanen (Finland/Australia).
Reuben has consistently won awards from national and international events. These include; the Ursala Hoff award for the best performance of a classical work in an ANAM recital (2022), the Minnie May Bussey and Concerto competitions at QCGU (2021), as well as the award for most promising audition in 2019. In 2020, Reuben was awarded first prize in the university category of the Bolder Bach Festival’s Online Bach Competition, an international competition held during the COVID-19 pandemic, and was the only Australian prize-winner.
Reuben was the bass guitarist, a backing vocalist and songwriter of Australian original rock band A Bridge in September. Reuben has sung choral music for most of his life, and has been a professional member of choirs at St Stephen’s cathedral, Brisbane, and previously The Washington National Opera, Maryland. He is also currently organist at the Wesley Uniting Church, Box Hill, where he plays a Henry Wilis Organ, built in 1877.
FROM: Brisbane, QLD. Lands of the Jagera/Turrbal peoples.
Reuben’s training at ANAM is sponsored by the Tallis Foundation and supported through the ANAM Syndicate program by donors Lesley Hawkins, Anthony Knight OAM and Beverly Knight, Max Garrard, Julie Wehbe, Lesley Milburn, Anonymous
Photo credit Pia Johnson