Naomi Sanchez – concert pianist, educator, and entrepreneur – has enjoyed a truly varied and exciting career. A native Californian, she has spent her professional life in San Francisco, educating and empowering people in music performance, music business, and personal finance. Ms. Sanchez approaches her students and clients with similar messaging of limitless possibilities and dreams into action.
Ms. Sanchez began learning to play the piano at age 4, and the violin at age 7. She attributes her love for playing and sharing music to her supportive parents and inspiring teachers. She went on to study piano performance at the prestigious Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where she received both Bachelors and Masters degrees in music. Her teachers were Evelyne Brancart and Emile Naoumoff, the last pupil of the great Nadia Boulanger.
Her career as a member of the award-winning piano duo, Pas de Duo, allowed her to share her love of music across the United States to audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Under the professional coaching of pianist Betty Woo, Pas de Duo won First Prize at the NFMC Ellis Duo Piano Competition, First Prize at the Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, the Abild American Music Award, and the Francis Christmann Award. Pas de Duo made their New York City debut at Carnegie Hall to critical acclaim, and went on to perform at the Chautauqua Institute, the New York Philomusica, and numerous cities and towns throughout the U.S.
Ms. Sanchez is the founder and director of the Berkeley Academy of Music, dedicated to cultivating creativity in the students, as well as a lasting love for music. BAM students experience great personal joy through their music, often studying from a young age all the way through high school and beyond. The BAM Piano Team has a tradition of traveling to Colorado Springs and winning top prizes at the United States International Piano Duo Competition. A passionate music educator, Ms. Sanchez has presented young people’s concerts and lively master classes for students of all ages, and regularly serves on the jury for several competitions.
Ms. Sanchez has been a long-time member of the teaching-artist staff at the American Conservatory Theater, San Francisco’s premier regional theater company, where she has taught musical theater and provided musical direction for several studio shows. Notably, she performed her own piano arrangements at the National Theatre in London for the ACT Young Conservatory original theater piece, Forever Young: The Music of Bob Dylan.
As a Life Member of the National Federation of Music Clubs, Ms. Sanchez is a strong promoter of the organization, having served on several committees at both state and national levels. She is currently president of the California Federation of Music Clubs, which supports a strong Federation Festival as well as Junior Composers Contest. For the national organization, Ms. Sanchez serves on the Ellis Duo Piano Competition Committee, the Endowment Committee, and the Lynn Freeman Olson Composition and Pedagogy Award Committee.
Ms. Sanchez loves spending time with family and friends, and traveling with them to all parts of the world. Although she is from the beautiful California coast, she much prefers warm beaches and clear waters!