Cassidy Gephart of Taylor Mill is a 2013 graduate of Notre Dame Academy. So far, she has made the most out of her young life and has discovered that the harder she works, the luckier she gets. It is through her constant practice since 3 years old that she was able to get into Carnegie Hall.

Her piano teacher, Lori Detzel, who also happens to be her mother, knew that her little girl was gifted. Hence, she taught her in a way that would bring about much earlier success before moving on to the more formal and classic methods of piano instruction. Cassidy has always been an enthusiastic student and in 2004, when she was just 9 years old, she competed in the World Piano Competition held in Cincinnati at the Aronoff Center. She ended up winning a bronze medal for her division and travelled to New York City to claim her prize. This provided her with an opportunity to perform a solo at the World Piano Competition Winners’ Recital on stage at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall.

Since then, Cassidy has continued to grow and learn to become a better pianist. She has even took part in many recitals and competitions. However, her mother was concerned that she might begin to lose interest as she approached her teenage years. This prompted her mother to go on a search for a musical genre that would pique her daughter’s interest and give her skills a new challenge. This was the reason Lori recommended ragtime to her daughter. It paid off in 2007 when Cassidy became the first female Junior Champion at the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest held in Peoria, Ill. She managed to come up on top with her renditions of Scott Joplin’s “Maple Leaf Rag” and Zez Confrey’s “Dizzy Fingers.”

After that, she was invited to do a performance and interview on the Northern Kentucky Magazine television show in 2009. Eventually, this caught the attention of Ricky Nye, a vocalist and pianist internationally known for his blues, boogie woogie and New Orleans style piano skills. After he had a conversation with her, it resulted in her being involved in a performance at the Cincy Blues Fest at Sawyer Point in 2009. Two years of studying with Ricky increased her interest in Jazz and allowed her to blossom even more. For more of the story, you can read it here.

Learning to play the piano is a lot easier if one is gifted. However, even if you are not as gifted as others, it does not mean you can’t learn. Yes, it may require more effort and time, but hard work will eventually pay off. At Awesome Piano, we believe that talent can only propel you so far, one would still need to put in the work and practice in order to be an accomplished pianist. Feel free to check our website to learn more about us.