The Piano Competition was held January 13-20 at the Arizona State University (ASU) School of Music. Dmytro Choni, Catherine Huang and Ruisi Lao took first place in their respective categories. Recognized as being among the top piano competitions in the world, it attracted a total of 280 pianists from 35 different countries with 43 selected to perform in the semifinal and final rounds. Prizes included more than $50,000 in cash awards and recital performance opportunities for the top winners.
The first prize in the Bösendorfer competition for pianists ranging in age from 19 to 32 was awarded to Dmytro Choni, 25, from Ukraine. He received the gold medal and the $15,000 David Katzin Award. He will be featured in a number of concerto performances with The Phoenix Symphony and will perform a recital in Merkin Hall, Kaufman Music Center, New York as well as a recital for the Oracle Piano Society in Arizona. He began piano lessons at the age of four and is currently studying with Professor Milana Chernyavska at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz, Austria.
Hyo-Eun Park, 23, from the Republic of Korea took second place in the Bösendorfer competition and received the silver medal and the $10,000 Phyllis Chiat Award. Park started playing the piano at the age of five and is currently studying with Hie-Yon Choi at Seoul National University.
The third prize in the Bösendorfer competition went to Hungarian-American pianist Peter Klimo, 28, who received $5,000 and the bronze medal. Studying piano since the age of nine, Klimo is currently pursuing his Doctor of Musical Arts in Performance and Literature at the Eastman School of Music with Alan Chow.
Bösendorfer piano competition winners (l to r): Hyo-Eun Park, Republic of Korea (Second Place); Dmytro Choni, Ukraine (First Place) and Peter Klimo, United States (Third Place)
In the Yamaha Senior Competition for pianists aged 16 through 18, Catherine Huang,16, from the United States received the Burns-Addona Award and the gold medal. Second prize was awarded to Yongqiu Liu, 18, from the People’s Republic of China, and the silver medal. The bronze medal and third prize went to Yangrui Cai, 18, from the People’s Republic of China.
Pianists’ ages 13 through 15 comprised the Yamaha Junior Competition. Ruisi Lao, 13, from the People’s Republic of China, took home Addona-Burns Award and gold medal. Kevin Cho, 15, from the United States earned the silver medal and second prize. Katherine E. Liu, 14, from the United States received the bronze medal and Linda and Sherman Saperstein Award.
Additional special award recipients from the competition were also announced. The Yehuda Meir memorial award for the most artistic performance of an etude by Chopin went to Polina Kulikova from Russia in the Bösendorfer competition. The Sarra and Emmanuil Senderov Award for the most outstanding performance of a composition by a Russian composer went to Anastasia Rizikov from Canada in the Bösendorfer competition and Catherine Huang from the US in the Yamaha competition. Aushuang Li from China won the Sangyoung Kim Award for the most outstanding performance of a virtuoso work in the Bösendorfer competition. Li also received an award for the most outstanding Arizona pianist, sponsored by National Society of Arts and Letters Arizona Chapter. Xinran Wang from China won a special award for the best performance of a work by a French composer in the Bösendorfer competition. There was a tie between Anastasia Rizikov from Canada, and Angie Zhang from the US in the new Mary Jane Trunzo Audience Favorite Award. The two winners were selected by the audience during the semifinal round.
This year’s jury included Sofya Gulyak, a Leeds International Piano Competition gold medalist; Faina Lushtak, Steinway Artist and professor of music and piano performance at Tulane University; Asaf Zohar, Tel Aviv University professor, Israeli pianist and pedagogue; Zhe Tang, vice dean and piano professor at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music; Robert Hamilton, internationally renowned pianist, recording artist and ASU professor and Baruch Meir, ASU associate professor of piano and Bösendorfer Concert Artist.
“Our competition has become one of the leading piano competitions in the world today, alongside the Van Cliburn, Leeds and Arthur Rubinstein competitions,” says Meir, who is also the founder, president and artistic director of the competition. “Many of our competition winners have gone on to develop major musical careers. We are proud to assist these young pianists in achieving their dreams while focusing the musical world’s attention on Arizona. Our selected competitors come from some of the worlds’ leading music institutions, including Juilliard, Yale, Shanghai Conservatory and the Royal College of Music, as well as ASU.”
The weeklong event is held at the ASU School of Music in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts in collaboration with the Phoenix Symphony and the Arizona Young Artist Committee.
For complete information about the ASU School of Music and this year’s competition visitmore