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Poland's Chopin Competition draws to a close

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 20.10.2015 10:11
The last three finalists in the 17th International Chopin Piano Competition will perform in Warsaw on Tuesday night.
Georgijs Osokins performs at the Warsaw Philharmonic Hall on Monday. Photo: PAP/Paweł SupernakGeorgijs Osokins performs at the Warsaw Philharmonic Hall on Monday. Photo: PAP/Paweł Supernak

The competing pianists are Canadians Charles Richard-Hamelin and Yike (Tony) Yang, as well as Dmitry Shishkin of Russia.

Richard-Hamelin has selected Chopin’s Concerto in F minor for his performance (he is the the only one to do so of the ten finalists). The other two will perform the Concerto in E minor, and all three will be accompanied by the Warsaw Philharmonic under its Music Director Jacek Kaspszyk.

In line with a long-standing tradition, most of the audience will not leave the Philharmonic Hall but will wait in the foyer, known as the Mirrors Hall, for the announcement of the jury's verdict.

The jury is a 17-strong body of both Polish and foreign piano virtuosos, including such household names as Adam Harasiewicz (winner of the Chopin Competition in 1955), Martha Argerich (the 1965 winner), Garrick Ohlsson (the 1970 winner), Dang Thai Son (the 1980 winner) and Yundi Li (the 2000 winner).

The winner of the First Prize will receive the Gold Medal and 30, 000 euros funded by the President of Poland, while the winner of the Second Prize will be presented with the Silver Medal and 25, 000 euros funded by the Speaker of Parliament. The winner of the Third Prize will receive the Bronze Medal and 20, 000 euros funded by the Prime Minister.

A wide range of other prizes will also be awarded, including those for the best interpretation of a polonaise, a concerto and mazurkas. World-famous Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman has funded his own award (10, 000 euros) for the best performance of Chopin’s sonata.

The winner of the First Prize will also receive numerous invitations for concerts and recitals in such venues as Vancouver, the National Centre of Arts in Mexico City, the Chopin Festival in Nohant, the Prague Spring, and the Grieg Festival in Bergen. The first six finalists will go on a tour of Japan and South Korea with the Warsaw Philharmonic. (mk/nh/rk)

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