|Editor: Daniel Mitterdorfer||
|I have only good news for you. When the 2008 Competition comes to an end, we already have planned almost 60 concerts to be given by Prize-winners in all states of Australia, including quite a number of country towns.
Now that the Auditions have been completed, I am very pleased to say that we have an excellent list of pianists to perform in the Competition. I have heard from Warren Thomson how difficult the Judging Panels in each of the cities that the Auditions were held, to select only the very finest pianists. In New York, a music critic from the New York Times stated that without exception all of the pianists who had performed in the Auditions in New York were professional and how difficult it was to select only the finest of these pianists.
With this information, we can certainly look forward to a really outstanding Competition commencing on 16th July with the Opening Concert being given by the 2004 First Prize-Winner, John Chen. I look forward to seeing you at the Seymour Centre and the Concert Hall of the Sydney Opera House.
1985 First Prize-Winner Du Ning Wu and his wife Helen Sim were First Prize-Winners in 2004 in the 4th Grieg International Piano Competition in two Sections (a) Piano Four Hands and (b) Two Pianos.
Martina Filjak has had success in several recent competitions. In July, First Prize at the “Bartok-Prokofiev Kabalevsky” Competition and also First Prize in the IBLA Piano Competition which provides her with a Carnegie Hall debut and a USA tour in 2008.
John Chen has had successful Concerto appearances with the Queensland Orchestra with Roger Smalley’s Piano Concerto No 2 and the Bartók Piano Concerto No 2 on the same program (31 August, 2007) and with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Nicholas Milton, and two performances of Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No 2 (5 and 6 September 2007). On the 31st October, 2007, he featured soloist with the Australian Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, performing the complete No 1 favourite Concerto in the Competition conducted by ABC Classic FM, Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto (Piano Concerto No. 5).
Duncan Gifford has been quite busy with concerts as well as his weekly commuting to Palma on Majorca where he holds a Professorship in the Conservatory. He has recently performed with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra in Prague. He has also performed the Bartók Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion in Palma and has given a solo recital in Madrid.
In January, 2008 Alexey Yemstov entered the UNISA International Piano Competition in Pretoria South Africa. He was awarded the following Prizes: 1. Second Prize, 2. Best performance of a Mozart Sonata, 3. Audience Prize 4. Best performance of the South African work, 5. Best performance of the Finals Concerto, equal with the First Prizewinner. The total prize money was AUD24,000. Alexey was soloist with the SSO conducted by Matthew Kourey at the Superbowl in early March playing the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini by Rachmaninov. More recently, Alexey gave two performances of the Rimsky Korsakov Piano Concerto with the Queensland Orchestra.
At the 2007 Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow Alexander Lubiantzev was awarded the 3rd Prize.
|Since the first Competition in 1977, live auditions have been held world-wide. In 2008, live auditions were held in Naples, Vienna, Hamburg, Paris, Moscow, London, New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Beijing, Shanghai and Sydney. In addition unedited videotapes or DVDs were sent from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Israel and South Korea. The videos and DVDs were viewed by the Sydney Panel. From these auditions, a total of 36 pianists were selected to come to Sydney for the Competition itself which runs from the Opening Recital on 16th July to the Presentation of Prizes on 2nd August, 2008. A Reserve list has also been provided.
Yamaha provided the Audition facilities in Paris, New York and Tokyo. Kawai provided the Audition facilities in Los Angeles and Steinway in Vienna, London, Moscow and Hamburg. Conservatories of Music provided the facilities in Naples, Beijing and Shanghai and in Sydney, The Scots College, Bellevue Hill. Practice rooms were provided in each venue and the staff members in each city were very helpful.
In each city I was assisted by leading performers and/or teachers. Those assisting were:
Naples: Francesco Nicolosi and Laurado De Fusco
Vienna: Alexander Jenner and Heinz Medjimorec
Hamburg: Volker Banfield and Matthias Kirschnereit
Paris: Aquiles delle Vigne and Marcel Baudet
Moscow: Serge Dorensky and Ludmila Roschina
London: Norma Fisher and Bryce Morrison
New York: Augustin Anievas and Robert Sherman
Los Angeles: John Perry and Nancy Bricard
Tokyo: Midori Tanabe and Shuku Iwasaki
Beijing: Zhou Guangren and Li Qifang
Shanghai: Huang-Kuan Chen and Yun-Ling Yang
Sydney: Michael Brimer and Malcolm Batty
Certificates of Appreciation were presented to each of the assisting Judges and to the Managers in each of the Venues where the Auditions took place.
New York auditions were the largest by sheer number, with 45 and second in number was Paris with 35. In Sydney there were 35 including the 8 videos and DVDs. A total of 240 Applications were received from 36 countries.
These countries were: Australia, Austria, Belarus, Canada, P.R. China, England, France, Georgia, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taipei, Thailand, Ukraine, Uzbekhistan and Venezuela.
- Prof. Warren Thomson OAM
Artistic Director and Chairman of the Jury
The Committee of the Friends of the Competition have received many requests for memorabilia, and for the 2008 Competition they will have satchels made with the 2008 Competition Logo on the Front.
The satchels will be black vinyl with the logo in white in the middle of the front. The satchel has a main pocket and four smaller pockets, a place for a name to be inserted and three places for pens or pencils. The satchel has a handle and also a shoulder strap. The cost of the satchel will be $15.00. An order form is enclosed with this Newsletter and should be returned to the Treasurer as indicated.
Satchels will be available from 16th July 2008 from the Competition Office in the downstairs foyer of the Seymour Centre.
Warren Thomson, Louise Allison and John Allison
at SIPCA 2007 Christmas Party
Ara Vartoukian, Michael Brimer, Nicholas Young and John Blanch at SIPCA 2007 Christmas Party
An upcoming course offered by the Centre for Continuing Education, University of Sydney in collaboration with the Sydney International Piano Competition of Australia.
Sunday 15th June, 2008
Sofitel Wentworth has a proud standing as Sydney’s Hotel of the Arts and as part of our commitment, we support many significant arts organisations including Sydney International Piano Competition, Art Gallery of NSW, Museum of Contemporary Art and the upcoming Biennale of Sydney 2008.
On 15 April, Sofitel Wentworth Sydney will host the 2008 Archibald Luncheon with the Art Gallery of NSW. The nation’s favourite and most prestigious prize for portraiture is always a source of entertainment and controversy. This is your opportunity to be part of the conversation with the Gallery’s director Edmund Capon, selected artists and their subjects.
The luncheon will be held from 12.30pm to 2pm in the Wentworth Ballroom on Level 3, Sofitel Wentworth Sydney. The 2 course meal includes wine and coffee and tickets are available for $80 per person and $73 per person for Art Gallery Society members. Bookings are essential by calling 02 9228 9169.
If you can’t make it to the Archibald Luncheon, for a limited time, you can make the most of your Archibald experience by enjoying a luxurious overnight stay at Sofitel Wentworth Sydney
The Archibald Experience package starts from $389 per night and includes luxurious overnight accommodation for two people; a two course lunch (including a glass of wine) at The Restaurant at the Art Gallery of New South Wales; two tickets to the Archibald Prize exhibition; full buffet breakfast and car parking. Terms & conditions apply. Valid until 18 May 2008.
For enquiries and reservations, please call 1800 676 960 and quote Archibald Experience.
For more information visit http://www.sofitelsydney.com.au