Our annual intensive Master Classes at The Steps in Rye, for those aged 18 years or older, are designed exclusively for those on the brink of a professional career.  The week culminates in a concert by the students in Winchelsea.  Teachers and observers are also welcome to join us.

If you would like to be kept informed about future Master Classes and events, along with news from The Foundation, please sign up to our mailing list (sign-up form at the bottom of the page).


The Steps:

An Edwardian house with literary and musical connections, just 15 minutes walk from the ancient and historic Cinque Ports town of Rye (ryesussex.co.uk)


What else is available?

Excellent practice facilities for pianos and a range of other instruments.
A comprehensive library offering a wide range of music (including Urtext editions), analytical books, CDs and also general reading in a variety of different languages.


Should you wish to take a break, we have in the gardens a croquet lawn, boules, badminton and table tennis. There is also nearby a private Club offering students at The Steps the use of an indoor heated swimming pool.


During the week we have a Wardrobe Expert in situ who will be advising on formal and appropriate Concert attire.  We are able to supply items of clothing for this event should you require them.


The nearest mainline station is Ashford International, which connects to both Europe via the Eurostar and London stations – from Ashford there is a direct link to Rye itself.  For more information on train times and tickets, please have a look here:  www.nationalrail.co.uk or www.trainline.com.  Both have companies apps available for download too.

The closest airports are London Gatwick or London Heathrow (via central London).

Teachers and Observers:

Visitors are also most welcome to observe these Master Class sessions in the week prior to the concert. These will run daily from 10.00 am – 1.00 pm and from 2.00 pm – 5.00 pm. Individual tickets for each session are £15, payable at the door. If you would like also to join us for lunch, there will be an additional charge of £5 per head. Numbers will be limited, so please confirm in advance if you would like to attend.  Observers may also join us for the whole week.

We also offer a 10% discount for EPTA members – so a daily rate is £32 per member or per session, the rate is £13.50.

Local Places to Stay (for non-residents)

We would recommend booking your accommodation as soon as you can.  During the peak summer season in East Sussex the hotels and B&Bs book up very quickly.  Here are a number of local places we would recommend (although you may find alternatives through online booking sites such as Airbnb or Booking.com):

The Kings Head, Playden

Playden Oast

Flackley Ash Hotel, Peasmarsh



Pianist and pedagogue Alberto Portugheis was born in La Plata, Argentina, to parents of Russian and Rumanian descent. His international career began after winning First Prize at the Geneva Concours de Virtuosité.

He performs in recitals, chamber-music concerts and as soloist with major orchestras, including: Royal Philharmonic, London Symphony Orchestra, London Mozart Players, Philharmonia, English Chamber Orchestra, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, Paris and Israel Sinfoniettas, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Sinfonica Nacional of Argentina, Filarmonica of Buenos Aires. His annual Steinway Masterclasses are now legendary.

Alberto Portugheis’ repertoire includes music from the baroque to contemporary, with several composers writing specially for him. His acclaimed recordings include: 4 Chopin Ballades, Alfred Nieman 2nd Sonata, Ginastera complete piano music and chamber music with piano, Khachaturian Piano Concerto with the London Symphony Orchestra, Khachaturian solo works, Rachmaninov and Shostakovich cello and piano Sonatas with the cellist Gwyneth George, a CD dedicated to the piano music of Rossini. 2013 saw the release of a double CD with The Complete Piano Works by Spanish composer Elena Romero, followed by a CD of music by Bach and Dinu Lipatti, partnered by Italian pianist Stefano Greco and the Youth Orchestra of León, Spain, conducted by Georgina Sánchez.