From the International Tchaikovsky Competition

In a major break from tradition the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition is pleased to announce that the 2011 competition, June 14- July 2, will be presented simultaneously in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia.  The competition’s Organizing Committee, chaired by Valery Gergiev recently revealed its noteworthy decision at a meeting in Moscow.  This is the first time in its prestigious 52-year-history that the competition will be held in another city.  Moscow will host both the piano and cello competitions, while St. Petersburg will present the violin and vocal competitions.

Moscow Conservatory’s Great Hall, an iconic venue of the competition, will soon undergo a major renovation which is scheduled to be completed just prior to the competition.  The four disciplines of the competition run concurrently and require four separate performance venues.  If the conservatory hall is not to be available in time, its resident competition will be displaced, disrupting the plans for the other competitions as well.  The predicament has, therefore, offered the violin and vocal competitions a new opportunity of performing in two of Russia’s most celebrated halls.
 “The remodeling of the hall of the Moscow Conservatory is both welcome and important, but at the same time, it is worrisome.  There are serious grounds for being concerned about an extended period of renovation.  In St. Petersburg there are at least two important halls ready to impart to the competition the highest level of prestige, and there are certainly two orchestras, the Mariinsky and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic able to offer the same,” said Maestro Gergiev.

Besides its wide recognition as one of Russia’s great cultural capitals, St. Petersburg is closely connected with the life and career of the composer, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.  Tchaikovsky began his musical career attending the St. Petersburg Conservatory and subsequently returned frequently to the city for premieres of his operatic works including the Queen of Spades and orchestral works including his Symphony No. 5.  He later died in St. Petersburg and is buried in the Tikhvin Cemetery.

“The paramount concern of a competition must be to offer the competitors the best possible circumstances in which to perform.  This includes the foremost venues and orchestras in both of Russia’s cultural capitals,” said Richard Rodzinski, Chairman of the Working Committee of the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition.

The Tchaikovsky Competition has created a new website designed by, Dievision, one of Germany’s leading communications agencies.  The website,, is in both English and Russian and gives a fresh and informative approach to the competitions significant history and includes all new rules and regulations, repertoire requirements and an explanation of the new voting system for the fourteenth competition.   The website will also serve as a platform for a live webcast and blogs written during the competition.

"When creating the website, it was our goal to enthuse young aspiring musicians for the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition”, said Katja Kluge, account manager at Dievision. “We wanted to make the whole process of entering the competition – from gathering the first information up to the compilation of the application – as seamless and user-friendly as possible“.
The new, innovative application system will streamline and accelerate the submission process.  Those using the online application will have the ability to complete forms with the option to revise entries such as repertoire at a later time.  The application will also give users the ability to upload required pictures and documents in a digital format.

The deadline for all applications and submission of a DVD of a 50-minute recital will be December 1, 2010. An international screening jury will review all materials in January and February 2011 and select 30 pianists and 25 cellists to come to Moscow and 25 violinists, 20 male singers and 20 female singers to come to St. Petersburg in June 2011. The names of the selected musicians will be announced in March.

Cash prizes and a prestigious concert tour will be awarded to the top five competitors in each discipline of piano, violin, cello, and to each of the top four competitors in the men’s and women’s solo vocal categories.  Additional awards will be given for best performance of the chamber concertos and the commissioned new work.

The International Tchaikovsky Competition, first held more than 50 years ago, is not only one of Russia’s most valuable cultural assests, but is also one of the major events in the international music community. Participation by previous generations of musicians, including Dmitri Shostakovich, David Oistrakh, Emil Gilels, Mstislav Rostropovich, Heinrich Neuhaus, Maria Callas and Georgy Sviridov, have enabled scores of young people from many countries to gain international prominence and to become established luminaries of the world’s leading concert stages. Past editions have spawned such renowned musicians as pianists Van Cliburn, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Mikhail Pletnev, Grigory Sokolov; violinists Viktor Tretiakov, Gidon Kremer, Victoria Mullova; cellists David Geringas, Nathaniel Rosen, Antonio Meneses and singers Evgeny Nesterenko, Elena Obraztsova and Deborah Voigt.

The International Tchaikovsky Competition is held once every four years. The first, in 1958, included two disciplines – piano and violin. Beginning with the second competition, in 1962, a cello category was added, and the vocal division was introduced during the third competition in 1966. In 1990, a fifth discipline was announced for the IX International Tchaikovsky Competition — a contest for violin makers which traditionally comes before the main competition.