Peabody Johns Hopkins University Magazine

Pia Bose: At Home in Geneva 

Pia Bose: At Home in Geneva 

Headshot of Pia Bose

Following a career path that’s had some unexpected forks, Pia Bose (MM ’01, Piano) is now living the life of a musician fully immersed in both her art and a community of artists.

Living in Geneva, Switzerland, since 2012, Dr. Bose begins her mornings practicing as half of the Bose-Pastor Duo (four-hand piano). The other half is her husband, Antonio Pastor Otero, whom she met while studying with Dominique Weber during an earlier stint in Geneva just a few years after finishing at Peabody. The duo won the second prize in the 18th International Piano Duo Competition in Tokyo in 2013 and has performed in Switzerland, Spain, France, and the United Kingdom.

Dr. Bose then shifts into teaching mode, coaching private piano students at the École Internationale de Genève. Her 25 students, who range in age from 5 to 18, hail from around the globe.

“I’m surrounded by wonderful people — colleagues and students — every day, and am constantly reminded of the inspiring and supportive teachers and mentors I had at Peabody and elsewhere,” Dr. Bose says. “Seeing my young students learn, grow, and become more knowledgeable, open-minded, compassionate, and inquisitive — as a result of music education — makes teaching and playing all the more meaningful.”

Sandwiched between practicing and teaching, Dr. Bose devotes herself to the nonprofit she co-founded with Mr. Pastor and three other colleagues: the Association Amigos de España. Its main project is Festival Goyescas, a festival of Spanish music, dance, arts, literature, and gastronomy, which “aims to bring warmth to a winter weekend in Geneva.”

Envisioned as an annual affair, the inaugural event took place in December, featuring guest artists including pianist Javier Perianes; flamenco dancer Ana la China; Cuarteto Quiroga; Cueva Flamenca; and professors Jenaro Talens (Université de Genève), Andrés Soria Olmedo (Universidad de Granada), and Diego Martínez Martínez (director of the Festival Internacional de Música y Danza de Granada), under the patronage of eminent conductor Jesús López Cobos and the ambassador of Spain in Bern.

When Dr. Bose completed her master’s degree under Marian Hahn, she expected to study with Mr. Weber for a year and then enter a doctoral program. Instead, she worked with Mr. Weber for three years, earning a Diplôme de Soliste, and then taught at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and the University of Texas at El Paso, eventually earning her DMA in 2012 at the University of Colorado Boulder under fellow Peabody alumnus Andrew Cooperstock (DMA ’88, Piano).

“After several years of wondering which path to choose, where to live, Geneva is finally home for us. At least for now,” Dr. Bose says happily.

— Rachel Wallach