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The World of Piano Competitions – issue 2 2020

As a collaborating partner Piano Street is proud to present the fourth issue of The World of Piano Competitions, a magazine initiated by PIANIST Magazine (Netherlands and Germany) and its Editor-in-Chief Eric Schoones. Here we get a rich insight into the world of international piano competitions through the eyes of its producers and participants.

Click cover to download:

Contributing Editors: Gustav Alink (Alink-Argerich Foundation), Gerrit Glaner (Steinway), Patrick Jovell (Piano Street), Maria Nikiforov, Florian Riem (WFIMC)

Free download!

Piano Street is happy to share the fourth issue of WOPC with our readers free of charge: The-World-of-Piano-Competitions-issue-2-2020.pdf

Content

Interviews
Yang Yang Cai | Let the music guide you
Jacques Rouvier | A question of character
Nelson Goerner | The long way

Competition Report
Liszt Competition | Labour of love
Pianolink | The more friendly alternative

In Profile
Queen Elisabeth Competition
The Robert Schumann Competition for young pianists
Brahms Piano Competition
Young Pianist Foundation
ARD International Music Competition
International Carl Maria von Weber Competition for Young Pianists
Rencontres Internationales des Jeunes Pianistes
International Telekom Beethoven Competition Bonn
International German Piano Award
International Piano Competition Memorijal Jurica Murai
The International Schubert-Competition Dortmund

Behind the Scenes
WFIMC | Piano Competitions on five continents
More and more Online Competitions
Ruhr Piano Festival | Rising Stars
Column | The Power of Visualisation

The Piano
Steingraeber anniversary
Concerthall
Mutual Love, Admiration and Fascination


Background

The piano enjoys a tremendous popularity worldwide and has the universal quality to be able to communicate through cultures, history and geographical borders. The value of piano competitions cannot be overestimated in terms of focus on the piano as an instrument and piano playing. The competition industry engages a multiplicity of concerns including hi-end piano manufacturing, media coverage and broadcast, repertoire spotlight and pedagogy, concert and lecture production and not least, career opportunity and exposure for laureates and non-laureates. All this contributes to a richer cultural life and can powerfully promote the aim we all share: to spread the joy and riches of the art of piano playing.

”Piano music, especially live, is incomparable and can be a great source of joy for players and listeners. We all should strive to allow as many people benefit from it as possible. For that, this edition of The World of Piano Competition is an excellent form of encouragement. I hope its message spreads widely! I wish everyone much joy reading it and, later on, attending a concert!”
— Guido Zimmermann, President Steinway & Sons Europe

THE WORLD OF PIANO COMPETITIONS
is published twice a year by PIANIST, as a part of the regular edition, and also worldwide as a separate magazine.

PIANIST (regular edition) is published four times a year in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Luxemburg, Liechtenstein, the Netherlands and Belgium.
www.pianist-magazin.de
www.pianistmagazine.nl


/nilsjohan
 
     

The Goldberg Variations Streamed from Bach’s Church in Leipzig

November 19-22 all fans of great piano music have the opportunity to hear a once in a lifetime live concert with Lang Lang performing the Goldberg Variations streamed from J.S. Bach’s Leipzig church. The stream will take place on DG Stage, a new video music service for classical concert streams from Deutsche Grammophon.

Stream starts Thursday 2020-11-19, 19:00 and can be watched on demand until 2020-11-22, 19:00 (GMT).
Get your ticket on www.dg-premium.com (9.90 EUR)

Free tickets for Piano Street’s members

Deutsche Grammophon cordially invites the Piano Street members to this unique online concert experience on DG Stage. 100 free tickets are available.

Log in to your Piano Street account and visit this special page to get your free online ticket for DG Stage. First come, first served.

An Extensive Album Release

The Goldberg Variations album with Lang Lang was released on September 4 on DG. Also available is a super deluxe edition featuring not only Lang Lang’s studio recording but a performance captured live in concert at Leipzig, where the composer worked and is buried. This coupling of studio and live recordings, a world first for the “Goldbergs”, offers fascinating insights into the art of interpretation.

The concert which took place in Leipzig’s Thomaskirche in March 2020 was Lang Lang’s second ever live performance of the work. Although he was very aware of the composer’s long association with the church, the emotional impact of playing this monumental work just metres from Bach’s grave still took him by surprise. Lang Lang is now giving fans the chance to experience the unique atmosphere of this recital, through a special streamed concert on DG Stage.


“The more time I spent with the Goldberg Variations, the more I wanted to know about Bach, his contemporaries and the composers he later inspired,” explains Lang Lang. “From a vocal number by Stölzel that was obviously popular in the Bach household and a work by the young Goldberg himself, to a beautiful miniature by Schumann – who loved and studied Bach throughout his life – via solo piano arrangements of some of Bach’s loveliest vocal and instrumental writing, all seven of the pieces I’ve just recorded as part of this project have added to my understanding of his music.”

The new platform DG Stage

DG Stage – The Classical Concert Hall, is a new online platform featuring exclusively produced classical concert streams by the world’s leading artists. The pioneering online venture, developed within the DG Premium platform, expands Deutsche Grammophon’s commitment to great music, inspirational artists and new technology. International audiences will be able to watch a broad range of classical concerts, including piano recitals, chamber music sessions and orchestra and opera performances, exclusively produced live on tape for DG Stage.


/nilsjohan
 
     

New Feature: Live Streamed Piano Recitals

With music venues on lock down across the world and many of us spending a lot more time at home, we can now enjoy the growing supply of concerts via live stream to watch from home on our TV, computer or smartphone.

The trend took off quickly, with production values ranging from tinny iPhone videos to cinema-ready sophistication. On March 12, the day New York theaters shuttered, the pianist Igor Levit gave his first lo-fi performance from his living room, while the Berlin Philharmonic and the Philadelphia Orchestra played to empty halls and audiences at home. Since then, a day hasn’t gone by without something new to watch.

Many of these online broadcasts have been more personal than a typical classical concert, with a casual dress code, pianos out of tune and imperfect production. It is a unique opportunity to hear what it sounds like when great artists are practicing at their own piano at home – perhaps a realistic chance to compare how your own piano playing is measuring up!

The new list of upcoming livestreams

Piano Street has now launced a new feature to help you keep track of upcoming livestreamed piano events. Watch the new ticker on our homepage >>

Note that all start times are given in GMT (UTC). We wish you best of luck with the challenging work to convert them to your own time zone!



/nilsjohan
 
     

193 Pieces by Liszt Added to Piano Street’s Sheet Music Library

The latest addition to our already vast piano sheet music library almost doubles the number of pieces by Franz Liszt. Last week, we added 193 pieces by this multifaceted composer, taking a significant step towards our goal of publishing a complete library of the classical piano repertoire. Our Liszt section is now nearly complete, but more will follow – with this extremely productive and hard-working composer-pianist it’s hard to know where to stop!

Getting a grip on Liszt’s complete works is a complicated business, not least because of his many reworkings and revisions – many pieces exist in two or three versions. Among our new additions are some early versions of pieces from the important cycle Années de pèlerinage. These works were conceived during the young Liszt’s years of travel, collected in the early Album d’un voyageur, and finalized in his mature period.

Liszt’s pianistic language was incredibly rich, and he wrote pieces in a lot of different genres. As one of history’s greatest touring virtuosos, much of his music is notoriously difficult to play. But there are exceptions, not least among the sacred pieces like the transcription of Arcadelt’s Ave Maria, or some of the late works like Abschied, Wiegenlied, or En rêve. Works from this period are also notable for their forward-looking harmonic language.

We’ve added many of the great fantasies and paraphrases, a specialty of Liszt, who was always very interested in promoting other composers’ works, either by including them in his recitals or by making all sorts of piano arrangements and transcriptions. Among the new opera fantasies on site are the Réminiscences of Mozart’s Don Juan, Bellini’s Norma and Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, and the Concert Paraphrases on Verdi’s Rigoletto and Ernani. There are also a large number of more straightforward transcriptions: 39 Schubert songs and 14 Wagner opera excerpts, to name some of them.

The new pieces are also available in the AST, where you can listen to handpicked recordings from Naxos Music Library while following along in the score – an excellent way of broadening your repertoire knowledge, and a chance to get a fuller picture of a composer who was one of music’s greatest innovators but tends to be known by only a tiny fraction of his work.

Se all recently added pieces

For instant unlimited access to the sheet music library and AST, you need a Piano Street Gold membership.


/david
 
     

Piano Street’s Top Picks of 2019

Happy New Piano Year!

We wish you a Happy New Year with a list of highly recommended reading from Piano Street. These are the 15 most read, discussed or shared articles of 2019.

/The Piano Street Team

P.S. The top list is also published on our Facebook page. Feel free to share the list your piano playing friends!


Digital Piano? Oh No – 100% Analogue!

What happens when innovative acoustical ideas come across a vintage broken piano? Well, Ukrainian musicians transformed it into a unique and completely analog hybrid of 20 different instruments that are each connected and controlled by the piano keys. Read more >>


Igor Levit’s Eternal Transcendence: “Life”

Igor Levit’s acclaimed album “Life” has attracted a lot of attention and its selected works have also been included in Levit’s recent recital programs worldwide. This is a profound, versatile and firm reaction to the death and loss of his best friend reflecting inner calm elaborating on an existential level. Read more >>


What’s Inside Steinway’s Secret Vault?

To get inside Steinways’s new secret addition to their New York Factory, you must be invited. “The Vault” has over $3 million in exotic veneers, waiting for the right buyer at the right time. Read more >>


Claire Huangci’s Complete Perspective: The Rachmaninoff Preludes

Pianist Claire Huangci, winner of the Geza Anda Competition 2018, just played in New York celebrating the launch of her new Rachmaninoff Preludes album on Berlin Classics. Like her complete Chopin Nocturnes album before that – for the same label – the complete Rachmaninoff 24 Preludes has been received with great acclaim internationally. Piano Street asked the ever touring pianist a few questions about her latest release. Read more >>


David Klavins Exploring the Limits of Piano Construction

Back in 1987, the German-Latvian piano maker David Klavins introduced the world’s largest upright piano; Model 370, which is two floors high. On display to the public for the first time on Friday this week, the even bigger Model 470i has already created a buzz among piano enthusiasts. Piano Street’s Patrick Jovell had a talk with David Klavins about his latest innovations. Read more >>


Piano Practice and the 10,000-hour Rule

A recent study seems to have dealt a blow to the often cited idea that 10,000 hours of practice will make an expert of anyone. “The idea has become really entrenched in our culture, but it’s an oversimplification,” says Brooke Macnamara, a psychologist at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. Read more >>


Keep Track of the Latest Piano Albums with Piano Street

Piano Street’s mission is to promote classical piano music, and we are always looking for new ways to enable you to listen, learn, and play. There’s no question that piano playing is thriving all over the world, and on the World Wide Web – just look at the flood of new recordings, videos, and streamed concerts constantly available just a few clicks away. Read more >>


200+ Pieces Added to Piano Street’s Sheet Music Library

There is no end to our efforts to render the Piano Street sheet music library more and more complete. In recent months, we’ve added a large number of pieces by some of the greatest composers – Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Brahms, Debussy, and Grieg. Read more >>


Chopin and His Europe

The whole piano world is teaming up for the 18th International Chopin Competition to be held in Warsaw, 2 to 23 October 2020. Stanislaw Leszczynski of The Chopin Institute talked to Piano Street’s Patrick Jovell at the Philharmonie in Warsaw. Read more >>


Build a Paper Piano with Nintendo Labo!

Not enough space for a piano? A foldable paper piano may solve that particular problem but don’t expect to play your favourite piano pieces on it. Read more >>


Through Nupen’s Eyes: Young Legends Play Mozart

On 11 March 1966, two great young pianists appeared together in public for the first time: Daniel Barenboim and Vladimir Ashkenazy played Mozart’s Concerto for two pianos at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon. Looking in the back mirror we realize the unique importance of this performance hi-lighting the two young pianists in the middle of building world famous careers. Read more >>


Alexander Gadjiev – To Save the World

Our meeting took place in Krefeld, at Kawai – the Japanese make of piano with which Alexander Gadjiev has become so familiar since his success at the Hamamatsu competition. Now his career is really taking off in Europe too: Gadjiev is a BBC New Generation Artist until the end of 2021 and is also one of the 25 chosen contestants at the upcoming 16th International Tchaikovsky Competition, 17-29 June in Moscow. Read more >>


Success, or Just a Sensation? Stuart Isacoff on Van Cliburn’s Moscow Win — 60 Years On

Piano Street has met the author of When the World Stopped to Listen: Van Cliburn’s Cold War Triumph and Its Aftermath, a personal and moving book presenting a sympathetic but honest account of the life of the legendary American pianist. Read more >>


The World of Piano Competitions – New Issue

As a collaborating partner Piano Street is proud to present the second issue of The World of Piano Competitions, a new magazine initiated by PIANIST Magazine (Netherlands and Germany) and its Editor-in-Chief Eric Schoones. Here we get a rich insight into the world of international piano competitions through the eyes of its producers and participants. Read more >>


Nelson Goerner – Exploring the depths

Nelson Goerner is a sort of ‘rare bird’ on the concert platform. Each of his concerts is a unique experience. His most recent CDs featuring major works by Brahms, Godowsky and Paderewski are simply breathtaking. Eric Schoones met him in Groningen to discuss his recordings, his views on his artistry and about Maria Tipo, with whom he studied. Read more >>


/nilsjohan
 
     



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