Adjunct Professor of Piano
Born in Deva, Romania, Dr. Mihai Vatca, started playing the piano at the age of 6. From 2006-2012 he studied at the “Gheorghe Dima” Music Academy in Cluj Napoca, with Dr. Monica Noveanu and later with Dr. Daniel Goiti. In 2010, he received his Bachelor’s degree and then his first Master’s degree in 2012, both in Piano Performance. In 2002, Mihai performed in a Master class with Léa-Jeanne Litzler Adam – Académie des Artistes Musiciens Paris, France. Mihai also performed in a Master class with the legendary pianist Jerome Lowenthal - member of the piano faculty at the Juilliard School of Music in New York.
Dr. Vatca has participated in more than 50 national and international competitions. Some of the most important awards that he has received are: First prize at National Piano Competition Deva, Romania 2000, 2001; “Troisieme Medaille”- International Piano Competition “Maryse Cheilan” Ville d’Hyeres, France, 2000,2002; First Prize National Competition Oradea, Romania, 2001; Grand Prize and Special Prize winner- National Piano Competition, Sighetu Marmatiei, Romania, 2001; finalist for “Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart”-Chamber Music Festival-Competition, Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2003; First Prize at the Art Song Competition, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas, 2014; First Prize at the Concerto Competition, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas, 2015. Dr. Vatca has performed in numerous Solo Recitals and Chamber Music recitals. He played with the “Sigismund Toduta” Youth Orchestra and Sam Houston Symphonic Orchestra as a soloist.
Dr. Vatca finished his second Masters, in Piano Collaborative and Chamber Music with Dr. Rus at Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas and recently he finished the work on his Doctoral Degree in Piano Collaborative and Chamber Music with Timothy Hester at University of Houston.
Along with his continuing professional development, Dr. Vatca started to teach piano lessons in 2005. He served as Piano Professor for the "Augustin Bena" School of Music, Cluj-Napoca, Romania between 2010-2013. Dr. Vatca worked as a Teacher Assistant at Sam Houston State University, School of Music in Huntsville, TX between 2013-2015 and at Moores School of Music, University of Houston, Houston, Tx. Between 2015-2019. Starting with 2016, as a collaborative pianist, Dr. Vatca began to have periodical collaborations with Houston Symphony Chorus and Houston Chamber Choir.
Back in 2014, Dr. Vatca became a staff member of the Music and Fine Arts department at Christ Church United Methodist in The Woodlands, Tx. Where he continues to serve as a pianist. Beginning with 2019, Dr. Vatca serves as Adjunct Professor of Piano in the Keyboard Department at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Tx.