38 candidates shortlisted for Bartók World Competition

The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music © Rudolf Klein

Young pianists from 14 countries, including the USA, China, Japan, Taiwan, Russia, Hungary and Switzerland, have applied to participate in the 2019 Bartók World Competition, which takes place at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music in Budapest from 9-15 September.

Members of the pre-competition jury from the Liszt Academy have chosen 38 applicants from submitted video performances to go through to the Preliminary round, the first of four live competition rounds held at the Academy. 12 contestants take part in the Semi-final, six candidates qualify for the Final, and three finalists pass through to the Grand Final. The competition ends with a Gala Concert including the prize-giving ceremony.

The entire live competition is open to the public, and will be broadcast by video streaming and/or television and radio.

In the Final round, contestants will play a piece of the Romantic period and one composition either by Ravel, Debussy, Rachmaninov, Scriabin or Stravinsky. The Grand Final takes place in the Academy’s Great Hall where the three finalists will play one of Béla Bartók’s or Ferenc Liszt’s piano concertos accompanied by the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zsolt Hamar.

‘Playing and practising with love and joy’

Dr Andrea Vigh, President of the Liszt Academy, said:

‘This is an extraordinary and atypical repertoire. The number of contestants indicates that young pianists consider Bartók’s music as a great challenge which they are willing to overcome. They are playing and practising Bartók’s pieces with love and joy because it makes them thrive and gives them strength’.

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