David Gross

David Gross

Professor of Piano, Coordinator of Collaborative Piano

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David Gross has performed extensive solo concerts both in the United States and Europe, including performances with the Berliner Symphoniker, Staatsorchester Frankfurt/Oder, Ensemble Oriol (Berlin), Rockford Symphony, Champaign-Urbana Symphony, Macon Symphony, Idaho Civic Symphony, Greenville Symphony, Brevard Philharmonic, Anderson Symphony, Merrimack Valley Philharmonic, and Hendersonville Symphony, as well as several university orchestras throughout the United States. He has been a featured soloist for the American Liszt Society National Conference, and has performed several recitals for the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series in Chicago. Gross has numerous recorded solos that were broadcast for German NPR, and he was featured in the German National Public Television film “Singing Hands” (ARTE). His recording of the Lalo Piano Concerto with the Staatsorchester Frankfurt/Oder was an “engaging and honed performance” (Fono Forum), and his 2010 release of Voříšek piano works is available on Centaur Records.

An active chamber musician, David Gross is a founding member of the Poinsett Piano Trio with Deirdre and Christopher Hutton. The trio has performed throughout the Southeastern US and Europe, on extensive tours of New Zealand, and several times as part of the US Piccolo Spoleto Festival.

David Gross grew up in Berlin and studied piano in Germany from a young age, and holds a Diploma from the Hochschule München, a Master’s Degree from the Yale School of Music, an Artist’s Diploma from the Hochschule Hannover, and a Doctoral Degree from the University of Illinois. His principal teachers include Ludwig Hoffmann, Arie Vardi, Daniel Pollack, Claude Frank, and John Wustman. He has held positions at different universities, including Resident Artist at Western Michigan University, Visiting Associate Professor at Goshen College, Visiting Professor at the University of Cape Town (South Africa), and Professor at Furman University, where he has taught for twenty years. Dr. Gross has been a featured lecturer and performer at the Goethe Institute in Boston, national conferences of the College Music Society and the Music Teachers National Association, and local MTNA chapters throughout the Southeast.


  • Marsala International Piano Competition, 5th Prize
  • Bremen International Piano Competition, Special Award
  • Kate Neal Kinley Memorial Fellowship (National Competition)


  • D.M.A., University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana
  • Artist's Diploma, (Konzertdiplom)Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover
  • M.M., Yale University School of Music
  • B.M., Staatliche Hochschule für Musik München (Munich/Germany) Piano Performance and Piano Pedagogy

Training Under:

  • Elisabeth Dounias-Sindermann, Childhood
  • Ingeborg Peukert, Pre-College
  • Ludwig Hoffmann, Hochschule München
  • Arie Vardi, Hochschule Hannover
  • Daniel Pollack, Yale School of Music
  • Claude Frank, Yale School of Music
  • John Wustman, University of Illinois


In musical terms my formative years began early, with lessons at age six and my first public performance (in a packed hall of 1400) less than two years later. Besides good teachers and devoted parents, the best education proved to be my attendance at concerts of the great artists. They fueled my passion for music, my appreciation for the quality of sound, and my awareness of their stage personalities.

In college I discovered a penchant for collaborative music, which now equals that for solo playing. Musicians love excitement, and among the most thrilling pieces I have performed are: Schumann piano works (music full of poetry), the song cycle Winterreise by Franz Schubert, the concertos and chamber music by Johannes Brahms. Music off-the-beaten-track also spurs my interest, such as works by Voříšek (on Centaur records), Szymanowski, and Lalo (on Signum). I enjoy chamber music with my faculty colleagues Deirdre and Christopher Hutton and with members of the Greenville Symphony.

Between my MM at Yale and DMA at Illinois, I moved back to Berlin where I built a vibrant professional life: making live- and studio-recordings for German public radio and TV, and performing solo recitals, concertos, chamber music, and vocal music (partnering with solo strings of the Deutsche Oper to form the Berlin Piano Trio, and with soprano Janet Williams of the Staatsoper). Three years of teaching at the State Conservatory "Hanns Eisler" marked the beginning of my university career.

After two years each in Illinois and Michigan, I came to Furman in 2001. The range of experiences I brought with me has been an ideal foundation for teaching in a liberal arts setting. My musical activity is as engaged and varied as it has ever been, contributing every day to my insights as a teacher.

My best teachers were those who helped me discover the greatness in music for myself; and their enthusiasm was my most compelling motivation. Realizing the impact those musicians had on me has shaped my own approach to teaching. Good music (no matter how old or new it is) speaks to us, but we may have to develop a sensitivity for its specific language. To do so never loses its allure--all we need is an open mind, heart, and ear.