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XinRu Chen

Pianist & Music Scholar​


Sphere on Spiral Stairs
“It was notable for the fistfuls of notes played by Chen, her bravura execution nonchalantly achieved."

The Guardian 

About Me

About Me

Appearing across Europe and China for her performance and research, XinRu Chen enjoys her life as a concert pianist, music scholar. Acquiring her PhD from the Royal Academy of Music at age 26, XinRu has performed in many prestigious halls in UK, Finland, Ireland, Spain, Italy and China, including St.Martin in-the-Fields Cathedral, St.James Piccadilly Church, Southwark Cathedral, Regent Hall, Duke’s Hall, Susie Sainsbury Theatre, and the National Concert Hall in Dublin. Her repertoire covers a wide range of romantic and contemporary music, recognised by the Janet Duff Greet Prize in the Christian Carpenter Competition. During the pandemic in 2020, XinRu led a series of experimental concerts at the Royal Academy of Music, live-streaming on the Academy website.


With her passion about music and piano, XinRu has given performances at many festivals across Europe, including the Petworth Festival, the Chipping Camden Music Festival, the Dartington Summer Music Festival, the III Festival International de Piano de Málaga, the Perugia International Piano Festival, and the Royal Academy of Music Summer Festival. As a soloist, she enjoys a broad range of concerto repertoire from early classical to late romantic period, cooperating with many orchestras, such as the Penzance Society Orchestra, the Ashdod Orchestra, and the Royal Academy of Music Student Orchestra. During her study life, XinRu has worked with many renowned musicians, including Christopher Elton, Alexander Kobrin, Pascal Devoyon, Imogen Cooper, Dina Parakhina, and Joseph Banowetz, and has been awarded many scholarships — the Leverhulme Trust Undergraduate Scholarship, the American Society for the Royal Academy of Music Scholarship, and the Marjorie McAdams Scholarship. In 2017 and 2018, XinRu was awarded the Arthur Hervey Scholarship and the Franz Reizenstein Prize at the Royal Academy of Music for her excellent academic works.


Meanwhile, XinRu is also an active music scholar, presenting her project ‘Reprogramming Schumann and Contemporary Piano Cycles’ at many conferences in 2022, including the AEC European Platform for Artistic Research in Music, the 12th Biennial International Conference on Music Since 1900, and the Perform-Live festival conference at the National Concert Hall in Dublin. She was selected as one of the representatives of the PhD department to present on the PhD open day at the Royal Academy of Music in 2021, and also to participate the Sibelius Academy co-seminar in Helsinki, in which her project and performance has received general acclaims. Currently she is bringing her innovative reprogrammes out to the general public, aiming to provide performers a new way to concert programming, giving audiences a refreshing view of conventional repertoire, as well as making the contemporary repertoire more accessible. 


XinRu finished her undergraduate and postgraduate study at the Royal Academy of Music in 2019, under the tutorage of Professor Joanna MacGregor. In 2023, she acquired her PhD degree at the Academy, supervised by Professor Roderick Chadwick and Professor Christopher Elton.

Education & Awards




Royal Academy of Music

MMus with Distinction

Royal Academy of Music 

BMus with First 
Class honour

Royal Academy of Music 


  • The Janet Duff Greet Prize in the Christian Carpenter Competition

  • DipRAM at the Royal Academy of Music

  • The Leverhulme Trust Undergraduate Scholarship

  • The American Society for the Royal Academy of Music Scholarship

  • The Marjorie McAdams Scholarship

  • The Audience Prize in St. Martin in-the-field Chamber Competition with the ‘Amanzi Quartet’

  • The Franz Reizenstein Prize in both 2018 & 2019 for general academic achievement at the Royal Academy of Music

  • The Arthur Hervey Scholarship for outstanding academic works in the Royal Academy of Music

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