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Adea Badivuku, doctoral student in piano performance


Adea Badivuku is a concert pianist from Kosovo. She grew up listening to classical music, while her favorite styles are romantic and contemporary. As a pianist who recently performed at Carnegie Hall and won first prize in the New York International Piano Competition, she is privileged to be the first US piano doctoral candidate since Kosovo. During her studies, Adea took part in numerous piano competitions, masterclasses and music workshops. She has performed in numerous concerts and festivals in the Balkans, Europe and the United States while working with notable artists in the music world.

Badivuku was accepted to Central Michigan University in 2019 as an MM student with a full GA in piano. In 2021, she joined the University team as an DMA candidate with a full scholarship in piano performance and a GRA position. Adea is vice president of the National Association of College Music Teachers and a representative of the Graduate Music Student Council. She is a member of the Graduate Student Association and sits on the Performing Arts and Student Advocacy Committees. She is also co-founder and performer of the ADE DUO ensemble.

Adea Badivuku explores the various colors of contemporary piano musical techniques. She analyzes several new musical notations, internalizes contemporary piano notation into her piano skills, and teaches her students and peers while sharing her experience with interdisciplinary colleagues. She is interested in works for piano/midi keyboard with musical tape, mainly with regard to the sound quality of timbre. In 2021, she wrote an article titled “Moving Beyond the Traditional Piano: A Literature Review of Extended Techniques and Electronic Enhancements” in which she studied several new standard musical techniques for piano performance and was accepted into the Michigan Music Conference .

She recently collaborated with composers and painters to perform in an audio-visual art installation called “Shadows”. She researches the music of John Cage from a technical and contextual perspective. Badivuku explores Cage’s prepared piano and landscape approach as well as collaboration with electro-acoustic music.

“Being a DRIVE Scholar has been a huge honor for me! This award allowed me to focus solely on my academic progress. I was able to work on releasing the album of my duo ensemble, I managed to collaborate with other artists such as a painter from Istanbul and a composer from UCSB to create an audiovisual work and, more importantly, helped me focus on creating the proposal to create an innovative/contemporary art festival in Kosovo, Reno and Santa Barbara. That being said, I believe hard work always pays off.