Susan Ellinger

Susan Ellinger is one of America’s musical treasures.”

Having learned to read music and the alphabet at about the same time, playing classical music was as natural for her as reading a book, riding a bike or swimming in a creek. As a native growing up in Vermont, she balanced her time outside the house playing in the woods and inside the house practicing her Steinway piano.

Praised for her “refined, poised and singular” vision, pianist Susan Ellinger has performed extensively as both soloist and chamber musician. At age thirteen Susan was awarded the National Baldwin Junior Keyboard Achievement Award presenting solo recitals in Washington DC for the Music Teachers National Association of America and at age fifteen made her concerto debut with the Vermont Philharmonic performing Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in G Minor under the baton of Brian Webb.

Ellinger has presented recitals at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Caramoor Music Center, Harvard University, Oberlin Conservatory, Tanglewood Music Festival, the Taos School of Music and many more. She has appeared as a concerto soloist with the Peabody Conservatory Orchestra with conductor Jed Gaylin, in regular concerts with The Chelsea Chamber Players in New York City presenting a series of concerti by Mozart and Beethoven, and as a featured soloist in concerts with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Marin Alsop. Susan Ellinger has won top prizes both as a soloist and chamber musician at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and Manhattan School of Music.

Praised for her “refined, poised, and singular” vision.

Pianist Susan Ellinger has performed extensively as both a soloist and chamber musician.

For the 2018-2020 seasons Susan Ellinger appeared as a soloist, chamber musician and/or clinician for Colorado Public Radio, Schmitt Music Denver, Englewood Arts, Regis University, The Academy of Boulder, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder Library, Colorado Mesa University, Art Song Colorado, Blue Sage Concert Series, Ouray Performing Arts Guild, Aspen Chapel, Avaloch Farm Music Institute, SubCulture NYC, Music Teachers Association of California, Sunset Arts San Francisco, and as concerto soloist with the Valley Symphony Orchestra in Montrose, Colorado.

As founder and Artistic Director of the Blue Sage Concert Series from 2011 to 2020, Susan had the privilege of programming, directing, performing for and educating a community in one of the most socioeconomically challenged and remote areas of Colorado’s western slope. Building a music program over the course of a decade, Ellinger rallied the community to fundraise and acquire a concert grand piano and went on to create a prestigious concert series. The series eventually grew into a robust music program including community choruses, a community matinee series, educational events for adults, and educational outreach to local public schools and youth orchestras. Susan’s vision is to strive to make music performance and education available to all regardless of socioeconomic status.

A protégé of Julian Martin at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Ellinger went on to study with Leon Fleisher at The Peabody Conservatory of Music and Veda Kaplinsky at The Juilliard School.  Susan is an alumnus of the Taos Festival School of Music where she studied with Robert McDonald.


The Viennese Style:
From Haydn to Schubert

Mozart – Sonata in D major K. 576
Haydn – Sonata in E-flat major, Hob.XVI:52
Beethoven – Sonata in A flat major, Op. 110
Schubert – Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946

Franz Schubert:
Master of Melody and Form

Four Impromptus, D. 899 (Op. 90)
from Four Impromptus, D. 935 (Op. 142)
            No. 3 in B-flat major
Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946

The Arc of Romanticism:
From Beethoven to Brahms

Beethoven – Sonata in A flat major, Op. 110
Schubert – Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946
Brahms – 6 Klavierstücke, Op.118

“Susan Ellinger is one of America’s musical treasures. Creating a top notch oasis for Classical Music in the mountains of Colorado, drawing full houses of concertgoers, Susan is one of the most elegant and talented pianists I have known.”

Jory Vinikour
Artistic Director, Conductor
Great Lakes Baroque



Beethoven – Sonata in A flat Major, Op. 110
(1st mvt.)

David Del Tredici – Acrostic Song
with Christina Jennings, Flute

Haydn – Sonata in E flat Major, Hob. XVI:52
(3rd mvt.)

Mozart – Sonata in D Major, K. 576
(1st mvt.)


“Praised for her ‘refined, poised, and singular vision’, pianist Susan Ellinger inhabits the worlds of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, conjuring a Vienna of the enlightened age, bringing these late sonatas to life with elegance, wit and charm.”

Recording Producer, Balance Engineer:
Phillip Schulz


Mario Grigorov


Piano Technician:
Gerd Finkenstein, Bösendorfer Piano

Recorded at Jesus Christus Kirche, Berlin Dahlem, August 21-24, 2017. This record is made possible in part by a grant from
Colorado Creative Industries.

“Susan Ellinger is a virtuoso pianist with a deep, creative, and facile musical mind. She brings diverse, world-class artists to her concert series to collaborate and perform. I look forward to every opportunity to explore music with Susan and to deepen my connection to the people that support the Blue Sage Center for the Arts on Colorado’s Western Slope!”

Darrett Adkins, Cellist
Artist/Faculty – The Juilliard School, Oberlin Conservatory, Aspen Music Festival