It seems only a few years ago that Ludwig Treviranus was finishing year 13 at Hutt International Boys' School and leaving Upper Hutt to study music in Auckland.
Head of music at the time, Judy McKoy, had been the key person inspiring and pushing him towards a musical career.
Ten years on her star student, 27, has returned briefly to Upper Hutt as Dr Treviranus to give a concert at Expressions and a music masterclass.
Now Dr Treviranus hopes to inspire a new generation with his passion for music and its storytelling abilities.
Every child has the ability to have access to deep parts of their imagination through music, he says.
As well as playing the piano he also likes to talk to his audiences about the music.
In coming home he is returning to the Upper Hutt community that has watched him grow in statute and expertise since he began playing the piano at 5 .
The German piano he learned on had family connections.
Dr Treviranus's father Heinz is German Samoan. His mother Atalana is Samoan.
They have two children. Daughter Athina is now 23 and a speech therapist in Auckland.
After HIBS Dr Treviranus spent five years in Auckland where he completed a bachelor of music and then his masters.
He moved to Florida for four years of study for his doctorate at the Florida State University in Tallahassee.
His studies complete, he has settled in Sydney where he teaches part time and does accompanist work, especially for students taking exams on other instruments.
While he has trained to teach advanced students, he has to start somewhere so has pupils as young as four.
But they could become his advanced students of the future.
He also spends considerable time job hunting.
He could have sought to stay in the United States but wanted to return home.
It is important, he says, to continue his ties with Upper Hutt and the New Zealand School of Music.
Mixed in with this is his own practice.
Warming up can take 30 minutes before serious practice for an hour or more.
In a day he could practice for up to five hours, but breaks it up to avoid RSI.
He has trained his memory to remember the music and creates images in his mind to help him express the various emotions included in a piece of music.
Saturday's recital in the Genesis Energy Theatre at Expressions was the first time he used a multimedia (through a powerpoint) as part of a concert.
He specialises in classical music (1750-1820) and pieces from the Romantic era (1820-1900).
At Expressions he joined the impressive list of international artists who have played the Steinway concert grand piano in the Genesis Theatre.
It is not only a great piano but a wonderful example of the Steinway sound, something difficult to replicate in other pianos, he says.
Dr Treviranus will be giving concerts in Auckland before returning to Sydney on November 20.
- Upper Hutt Leader