New Chinese piano competition, with $150K first prize, set to launch in May

Posted on: April 22, 2019

“On May 4, the First China International Music Competition will begin in Beijing, presented by the China Conservatory of Music and featuring what is believed to be an unprecedented first prize of $150,000,” writes Howard Reich in Friday’s (4/19) Chicago Tribune. The winner will receive “professional career management for three years (second and third prizes are $75,000 and $30,000).… The Philadelphia Orchestra … will play the competition’s last round…. Yoheved Kaplinsky, chair of the piano department at the Juilliard School in New York, is the competition’s artistic director and jury chair; Richard Rodzinski, who has run the Van Cliburn and Tchaikovsky competitions, is general director. … The Chinese put so much money and talent behind the event … ‘to be placed on the international music map in a very serious way,’ says Rodzinski…. There are deeper reasons, as well, starting with the ever-rising importance of classical music in China…. ‘Technically, it’s unsurpassed,’ says Kaplinsky…. ‘Many of the most gifted young Chinese musicians come to study in the West but don’t move back home…. One of the wishes of the president [of the China Conservatory] is to … create a musical environment … that is conducive to them staying there.’ ”

Posted April 22, 2019

In photo: Richard Rodzinski, general director of the First China International Music Competition, at the National Center for the Performing Arts in Beijing. Photo by Yu Liaochang, China Conservatory