18th International Piano Competition
18th International Piano Competition Fryderyk Chopin (also XVIII Chopin Competition) - 18th edition of the International Piano Competition Fryderyk Chopin, which took place on October 2–23, 2021 in Warsaw. The competition was organized by the Fryderyk Chopin Institute. Earlier, on July 12-23, 2021, the qualifying rounds took place.
87 pianists from 18 countries were qualified for the competition (including seventeen again) - nine without qualifying (as laureates of prestigious piano competitions in previous years) and 78 after the qualifying rounds. Competition auditions were divided into three stages, which were held on October 3-7, October 9-12 and October 14-16. The final concerts are planned from 18 to 20 October. The competition was won by Canadian Bruce Liu. Three laureates' concerts took place on October 21–23.
The budget of the competition was about PLN 20 million, and its main patrons, apart from the Ministry of Culture, National Heritage and Sport, were Totalizator Sportowy and PKN Orlen, while the co-organizers: Polish Television, Polish Radio Program II and the capital city of Warsaw.
On the basis of the rules announced by the competition organizer, a person born in the years 1990–2004 could take part in it. The application for the competition along with the required documents (including a DVD recording of the pieces to be performed by the pianist in the 1st stage) had to be sent to the Fryderyk Chopin Institute by December 1, 2019.On December 5, the organizers announced that the participation in the competition had history, the number of over 500 pianists from 53 countries (including China - over 100, Japan - over 90 and Poland - over 60). After reviewing and assessing the submitted materials, the appointed selection committee selected from 502 submitted persons a list of 164 pianists from 32 countries who were admitted to the preliminary auditions, including the most numerous from: China and Japan - 31 each, Poland - 18 and South Korea - 16. Information the number of persons admitted to the preliminary auditions was announced on March 9, 2020 at a special press conference by the director of the Fryderyk Chopin Institute and the director of the competition, Dr. Artur Szklener. Initially, the eliminations - in accordance with the schedule provided earlier - were to take place on April 17-28, 2020 in the chamber hall of the National Philharmonic in Warsaw, but due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic, they were postponed many times. On January 18, 2021, the organizers announced a new elimination date, which was set on July 12-23.
Ultimately, 151 pianists from 29 countries took part in the qualifying rounds. On the evening of the last day of the qualifying auditions (23 July), after the jury appointed for the qualifying session, the list of 78 pianists from 18 countries who had qualified for the October main competition was announced. According to the tradition of previous editions, the winners or laureates of some prestigious piano competitions were admitted to the main competition (without the necessity to appear in the qualifying rounds). Directly for the October auditions (main competition) - on the basis of the regulations - after submitting the application, the following nine winners were finally qualified: Sun Yutong (China), Tomoharu Ushida (Japan), Piotr Alexewicz, Adam Kałduński, Szymon Nehring, Kamil Pacholec and Piotr Ryszard Pawlak ( Poland) and Avery Gagliano and Evren Ozel (USA).
The elimination program included only works by Fryderyk Chopin, played from memory, which could include: etudes, mazurkas, nocturnes, ballads, fantasies or barcaroles, respectively. Each of the pianists performed 6 pieces (including obligatory two etudes and two mazurkas).
In the qualifying rounds, the pianists most often chose the Ballade in F minor