I was a student of Mila’s for almost four years. I started lessons with her in my sophomore year in high school which is very late. I am thankful for every minute of her teaching. I do not regret anything; even my struggles to fix some very bad habits in my playing. I am currently studying music at Trinity College, Hartford. I now see how much Mila taught me and how far she propelled me to compete and be better than my peers. She taught me to strive to be the best and to love music. Mila’s passion and emotional consciousness for music manifests itself in her students. Her way of teaching is truly magical. I often cite her as my second mother. She cares for every single one of her students.
Because of Mila’s teaching and care I have:
Won first place in the Crescendo International Piano Competition for two years in a row.
Played at Carnegie Hall.
Been awarded a first place finish at the Manchester Music School competition.
Won the Beethoven Award for most dramatic performance at the University of Rhode Island Music Competition.
Thanks to Mila I have the skill and confidence to:
Take lessons with Paul Bisaccia, one of the preeminent pianists in New England
And work on multiple piano duets with my music theory professor, John Platoff.
Mila brought out my musical passion and fervor. She inspired me to never stop in my musical adventure, even in the face of difficulty.
Thank you Mila for teaching, for caring, and for helping me.
I began taking lessons with Mila Filatova at age six and continued my studies through high school. Mila’s endless support and commitment to helping me become a better musician undoubtedly played a significant role in making me the person I am today. I am now studying at the College of the Holy Cross, where I receive a full-tuition scholarship for music. I also awarded the Doris Dodd Schuster Music Scholarship from the NHMTA in 2015.
Mila is incredibly knowledgeable about music and how to teach pianists at all levels, and invests so much in her students. I was given opportunities to attend regional and national competitions and festivals. I not only participated but won many awards. The Steinway Competition, the Granite State Competition, the Contemporary Music Competition, and the Eastern Division Piano Duet Competition are a few examples. I attended a music festival in Italy and was able to perform with an orchestra and study with world-class musicians. I performed in Carnegie Hall three times before the age of fourteen. All of these opportunities wouldn’t have been possible without Mila, and I truly can’t thank her enough!
I met Ms. Mila in my 13th year of playing piano. It was a turning point in my musical career. I remember the shock that I experienced when at our first lesson she not only introduced me to the different "colors" of sound the piano can make, but how to make each of these sounds using a different touch, mindset, emotion, and body movement. I believed at that point that the only paths to musical expression were tempo and dynamics. Realizing that I knew nothing about the piano despite 13 years of playing, I was embarrassed, fascinated, and motivated. I knew that my lessons with her would be a life-changing experience.
Through our lessons, I came to consider piano music like a short story or a painting. I could imagine scenery or an image that a composer might have had in his mind and recreate that image using different colors of sound that I learned to produce over the course of our lessons. Ms. Mila helped me understand that music is so much more than a set of pleasing sounds; it is a way of expression. Through learning the piano, I learned about myself. I am usually shy when I speak up in class, give a speech, or sing in front of people, but when I play the piano in front of the audience, I am a confident individual. By working on playing with confidence in our lessons, I learned about a side of me that I never knew existed.
In every single lesson, from day one, with her passion, care, and dedication for a student like me, who knew so little about the piano, Ms. Mila helped me learn about my instrument, my music, and myself. Meeting and working with her has been an unforgettable life-altering experience. Thank you so much Ms. Mila!
Maxine Park, 12, is a 7th grader at Crossroads Academy in Lyme, NH. She has been a student of Mila Filatova since she was seven years old.
In the past several years, Maxine has received first prize in numerous competitions, most recently at the Chopin International Piano Competition in Hartford, CT; the Steinway Society of Massachusetts Piano Competition for New England; New York Concerti Sinfonietta's 2016 International Shining Stars Debut Series; and the New Hampshire Granite State Piano Competition in both solo and duet categories.
In the summer of 2015, Maxine was the youngest student attending Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music Piano Academy, where she was selected to perform in a master class for Emile Naoumoff and the Piano Academy's Honors Recital at Auer Hall. This summer, she performed Mozart's Piano Concerto in C Major, K.467 with the New York Concerto Sinfonietta at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall.She was also invited to perform in July at the International Chopin Festival in Busko-Zdroj, Poland.
Last winter, Maxine was invited by NPR's From the Top to perform as Yoda (along with Darth Vader and Princess Leia) in a video mashup featuring a six-hands arrangement of John Williams' Star Wars and classical music .
Maxine also performs locally for the community, including in retirement communities in both New Hampshire and Massachusetts, for holiday events at the Omni Mount Washington Resort at Bretton Woods, at Massachusetts General Hospital, and a fundraising recital for the American Red Cross.
Outside of music, Maxine loves math and poetry, and has developed a personal interest in social psychology. She recently placed 3rd at the 2016 Mathleague.org National Championship, and her essay based on an interview with an inspiring math professor earned her first prize in an essay contest held by the Mathematics Department at Dartmouth College. She spends much of her free time helping her younger sister Roxane with math and piano.
Stephen Wang, a piano student of Mila Filatova, is a 9th grader at Hanover High School in Hanover, NH. He has won top prizes in state, divisional and international competitions, including consecutive first prizes in state competitions, the Boston Steinway competition, the Young Artist Competition in Westfield MA, and the Crescendo International Piano Competition. He was the alternate winner of the Music Teacher National Association eastern division junior piano performance competition this past year. He has attended in prestigious international music festivals includingthe Perugia Music Festival in Italy,during which he played a Bach Piano Concerto with the Parlartesymphony orchestra at age 10.Since then he has played piano concertos with three other different orchestras, and also played in two chamber music groups.
Stephen has performed in famous music venues like Carnegie Hall, Boston Symphony Hall, the historic Chandler Music Hall in Randolph Vermont, etc. He has been performing regularly at the Mount Washington Resort, Dartmouth College, DHMC, the Canoe Club in Hanover, various churches, retirement centers like The Green of Hanover, Harvest Hill in Lebanon, Huntington retirement center in Nashua, etc.
Sophie Zhu is 15 years old. She is a 10th grader at Westford Academy in Westford, MA. She came to Mila Filatova’s Piano Academy from a previous teacher because she was looking for a challenge. She has been studying piano with Ms. Filatova since 2010. Sophie attended many music festivals, In 2012 she went to Italy where she performed Bach Piano Concerto with the orchestra. She has been invited to perform at many venues, including the Mt. Washington Hotel since 2010.
November 2016: first place in the Crescendo International Music Competition and performed in the winner’s recital at the Carnegie Hall in NY.
May 2016: Third Place in Bay State Contest
April 2016: Gershwin Award in Piano Extravaganza!
May 2015: first place in Young Artists Piano Competition
May 2014: first place in Bay State Contest
April 2014: first place in Granite State Contest
April 2014: Liszt Award in Piano Extravaganza!
May, 2012: first place in Bay State Contest
April, 2012: first place in Granite State Contest
April, 2012: first place in the Piano Extravaganza!
June, 2011: grand prize in the second Kenneth A. Darrell Memorial Piano Competition
April, 2011: second place in the Granite State Competition
December, 2010: first place in the Crescendo International Music Competition and performed in the winner’s recital at the Carnegie Hall in NY.
June, 2010: second place in Kenneth A. Darrell Memorial Piano Competition
April, 2010: second place in the Granite State Competition
My name is Kathryn Ly-Bishop. I began my music education at the age of 5, and at the age of 11 I was introduced to Ms. Mila Filatova who immediately recognized my music potential and wanted to challenge me. At that time my piano study was easy and more for fun. I did not understand why Ms. Mila was setting such bold and serious goals ahead of me. After a few months of struggling, I decided to change to a different teacher that would allow me to pursue an easier approach to piano study. However, after a year I felt that I learned nothing and was so bored playing same easy pieces. I realized that if I was going to improve, I needed to return to Ms. Mila for a more challenging approach. She embraced me as always with her welcome and enthusiasm, and we have grown to become a great instructor-student team. Mila has always believed in my talent and encouraged me to work harder. I was initially frightened to perform on stage but as my confidence and skills grew I started to enjoy every opportunity to perform and participate in the competitions.
I received multiple First Place awards at various piano competitions including the Granite State Competitions (PSU, NH), the Granite State Piano Duet Competition (St. Paul's School, NH), the URI Piano Extravaganza Competitions (URI, RI), and the “Heirs of Orpheus” International Music Competition (Bulgaria). Whether performing in the United States or any parts of Europe, I learned how to feel most at home on stage and perform with passionate and control. I have appeared in multiple concert halls, including Carnegie Hall as a soloist and as a duo with my brother, Calvin Ly-Bishop. Ms. Mila encouraged me to attend the International Fine Arts Festival in Weimar, Germany, and to perform Bach’s Concerto in F minor with the chamber orchestra. In her Piano Academy all students have a chance to perform at several benefit concerts to raise funds for those in need, and I remember how rewarding it was for me to be a part of these events.
Currently, I am an undergraduate student at NYU in New York City as a Piano Performance Major. I am very thankful that Ms. Mila provided me with the important opportunity to study music theory before going to college, this is so helpful! I feel very confident with my knowledge. I stay in touch with Ms. Mila often, as our professional connection is established for life. I know Ms. Mila will always be there for me with her continued care and support.
Thank you for everything you’ve done, Mila!
Studying with Mila Filatova helped my piano performance skills to reach stratospheric heights. I studied piano for eight years before working with her, and had already developed a keen ability to express emotion and the personality of a piece. She worked with me for the first year to increase my dexterity and control, using many different techniques to improve my technique. It was under her direction that I learned how to bring out the best sound from every piano and for every piece. With a firm hand, Filatova guided me through increasingly complex and rich repertoire, strengthening my abilities all along the way. Her teaching was rewarding, both with an attention to detail and teaching me to bring overarching themes together to make my music moving and emotional. Notable solo pieces include Rachmaninoff’s Moment Musicaux Op 16 No 4 in E minor, Scriabin’s Prelude for Left Hand, and Mendelssohn’s Andante Cantabile e Presto Agitato WoO 6. Chamber music included Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio No. 1 Op. 49.
I moved from receiving honorable mentions to winning and consistently placing in competitions. I performed well in statewide competitions (3 top three finishes in NHMTA Granite State in as many years), and also performed at Carnegie Hall in New York (Crescendo International Music Competition First Place Honors, performance January 2015).
I would highly recommend Mila Filatova for serious pianists who want to take their craft to the next level.
Brunston Poon is currently a student at the University of California, Berkeley (Class of 2020) College of Engineering. He began piano at the age of 6, under the excellent tutelage of Jerri Witt of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He studied well under Mila Filatova for the four years he was a student at St. Paul’s School in Concord, NH, from which he graduated with honors including distinction in music (Form of 2016). In his four years at St. Paul’s, he won first (2014), second (2015), and third (2013) prizes in his division at the annual NHMTA Granite State Competition. He won the invitational Keiser Music Competition in 2014 and 2016 at St. Paul’s. His competition performance culminated with First Place Honors at the Crescendo International Music Competition; he was selected to play at Carnegie Hall and performed Scriabin’s Prelude for the Left Hand there in January 2015. He enjoys reading, writing, hiking, and, of course, playing the piano.
I began study with Mila when I was in fifth grade. She was my fifth piano teacher.
Up to that point, I had been self-taught, enrolled in group lessons, studied with a Suzuki teacher, and two other piano teachers. The end result was bad technique that resulted in constant pain in my wrists and back, I had to regularly see the chiropractor in order to help with neck and back pain. Mila asked me to forget my old way of playing and follow her directions. We started at an almost beginner level. At first, I was very disappointed but very soon, as my habits improved, I was playing better than ever. My hands would not get tired and, after a few weeks, I did not need to see the chiropractor! I love to create my own compositions and Mila supported me in every way she could. Throughout my five wonderful years in her studio, I received many awards in different competitions, participated in many recitals, including a performance in Carnegie Hall and a solo concert. Thank you, Mila!
Kevin, now 17 years old, began his study with Mila Filatova in 2007 at age seven after six months of study with another teacher. Mila immediately recognized Kevin's exceptional musical ability. Their collaboration has brought much success to this student-teacher team. Kevin has won numerous competitions and received many accolades and awards in USA and abroad. A representative sample is enclosed. In addition to outstanding piano performance, Kevin passed the 8th Level of the ABRSM with distinction.
2008 - 1st of the Granite State Competition (Elementary Level)
2008 - 1st Place in the Theodore Lettvin's Piano Competition
2009 - Third Place in the Young Promise International Piano Competition
2009 - 1st Place in American Fine Arts Festival, performance in Carnegie Hall
2009 - 2nd Place in the LISMA Competition
2010 - 1st Place in the AFAF International Chopin Competition
2010 - 2nd Place in the 4th International Gavrilin Piano Competition (Russia)
2010 - Gran Prix Winner in the Kenneth Darrell's Piano Competition
2010 - Third Place in the Steinway Piano Competition
2011 - 1st Place in the Crescendo Competition
2011 - 1st Place in the Steinway Piano Competition
2011 - 1st Place in the Granite State Competition
2011 - Winner, NH Fall Competition
2012 - 2nd Place in the Bay Contest
2012 - Winner of the Audition, performance of Haydn Concerto with the Orchestra, Italy (video)
2013 - 1st Place in the Contemporary Music Competition (PSU)
2013 - 1st Place in the Granite State Competition
2013 - 1st Place in the Steinway Piano Competition
2013 - Winner of the audition, performance of entire Grieg Piano Concerto with NCO (video)
2016 - 1st Place in the Steinway Piano Competition
2016 - Winner in the "Music without Borders" International Piano Competition
2016 - Alternate in the NH Fall Competition
Alessandra Mariano is 13 years old and an 8th-grader at the Academy for Science and Design in Nashua, NH. She has been studying piano with Mila Filatova for 7 years. Alessandra has participated and won many piano competitions. She received commendations from New Hampshire State Senator Lou D. Allesandro and former Governor Lynch recognizing her talent and achievement in music.
At 9 years old, Alessandra performed in a winners recital at Carnegie Hall. In 2012, she performed as a soloist with orchestra in Perugia, Italy and with Nashua Chamber Orchestra in 2013. She has won first prize in Granite State Competitions in 2012 and 2014. She participated in the Contemporary Piano Festival in Plymouth State University in 2016 where she awarded first place in the competition. Along with Mila Filatova's Piano Academy and American Red Cross, she initiated a fund rising concert for the victims of the typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines in 2013. Alessandra is a regular guest-performer at The Huntington, Nashua and at the Mt. Washington Hotel, Bretton Woods since 2011.