DMA, University of North Texas; Meisterklassendiplom, Hochschule für Musik Würzburg; MMus (Liedgestaltung), Hochschule für Musik Würzburg; MMus (Piano Performance), Stellenbosch University
South African pianist Esthea Kruger obtained her BMus and MMus (Piano Performance) degrees (both cum laude) at Stellenbosch University under the guidance of Prof. Nina Schumann and Prof. Luis Magalhães and was awarded Stellenbosch University's prestigious Chancellor’s Medal in 2009. After she had received scholarship offers from several music schools in the United States, she enrolled in a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance at the University of North Texas under the tutelage of Prof. Vladimir Viardo. Having completed her doctorate in 2012, she then commenced her Meisterklasse degree at the Hochschule für Musik Würzburg, Germany, studying in the class of Prof. Bernd Glemser. She was awarded the Meisterklassendiplom at the beginning of 2015. Additionally, she specialised in Art Song Accompaniment, obtaining a second master’s degree in 2019 in Liedgestaltung from the Hochschule für Musik Würzburg as student of Prof. Gerold Huber.
Esthea Kruger has won prizes at many major competitions in South Africa, such as the SAMRO Overseas Scholarships Competition, the ATKV-Muziq Competition, the FMR/Pick n Pay Travel Award Competition, the Stonehage Bursary Competition, the Mabel Quick Overseas Bursary Competition and the UNISA National Piano Competition. She has performed with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Chamber Orchestra of South Africa. She has also been the recipient of numerous bursaries for her overseas studies: the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust Scholarship, the P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship, and a DAAD scholarship from the Hochschule für Musik Würzburg.
Apart from her solo performances, Esthea Kruger regularly appears in concert as chamber musician, in South Africa and abroad. As Lied accompanist, she was awarded the pianist prize at the Armin Knab Singing Competition of the Hochschule für Musik Würzburg in 2013, 2015 and 2017. In 2018 she performed at the DAVOS FESTIVAL – young artists in concert in Switzerland.
Esthea Kruger is the founder and artistic director of “Neues Lied”, a festival for contemporary art song that she organises yearly in Germany. In 2020, the festival was awarded the City of Würzburg’s “Kulturförderpreis” (Culture Prize) for its contribution to the cultural life of the city. “Neues Lied” will also take place for the first time in Cape Town in 2022.