Cynthia Liem (1987) started playing the piano at age seven. Thanks to a scholarship of the Princess Christina Competition, from 2001 she studied in the young talent class of the Rotterdam Conservatoire with Michael Davidson. After this, she continued her music education in classical piano performance at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague with Rian de Waal, and graduated in 2009 as Bachelor of Music. Subsequently, she pursued her Master of Music degree at the same institute, specializing in both solo playing and chamber music with Paul Komen and Han-Louis Meijer, and graduating in 2011.
Cynthia was a laureate of different music competitions, including the Maassluisse Muziekweek, the Kijkduin Piano Competition and the Princess Christina Competition. She participated in master classes by different pianists, including Daniël Wayenberg, Willem Brons, Tamara Poddubnaya, Elena Richter, Håkon Austbø, Anton Kuerti, Charles Rosen, Malcolm Martineau and Leslie Howard. Currently, she most strongly profiles as a chamber musician. After successful earlier cooperations in the Trio Vere and the National Oskar Back Violin Competition 2011, together with Emmy Storms (violin) she forms the Magma Duo. With this duo, she will participate as a laureate in the Dutch Classical Talent Tour and Award 2014-2015, and won first prize and two special prizes at the ‘A Feast of Duos!’ competition in Sion, Switzerland. Next to this, she has special affinity with the vocal repertoire, leading to her regularly working together on opera and art song repertoire with several musicians, most strongly with mezzo-soprano Klarijn Verkaart and viola player Mirjam Klein.
In parallel to her music studies, in 2009 Cynthia obtained a Master’s degree with honors in Computer Science at the Delft University of Technology. Following this, partially sponsored through a Google European Doctoral Fellowship, she continued as a PhD student at this university, where she now serves as an Assistant Professor. Her research focuses on automated representation, search, analysis and recommendation techniques to improve the accessibility of digital music recordings in multimedia archives. She initiated several national and international collaborative projects, joining together representatives from science, industry and the performing arts. In all these activities, her musical background and experience always form a major source of inspiration.