Record number of international applicants denotes International Tchaikovsky Competition’s ongoing renaissance and reflects epoch under new management

International Tchaikovsky Competition

583 applicants from 47 countries

Top prize-winners from fellow leading international music competitions among the applicants

MOSCOW, RUSSIA--An unprecedented number of applicants from almost 50 countries for this year’s XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition illustrates the continuing re-birth of this most prestigious of international music competitions. The considerable number of worldwide applications received is a marked reflection of the 2011 re-launch under the new management of Valery Gergiev, Chairman of the Organising Committee, and Richard Rodzinski, General Director of the Competition.
Boosted by an international PR and advertising campaign, this year’s pre-eminent music competition has seen applicants from as far afield as New Zealand and Brazil, with non-European countries representing almost a third of applications and four out of the top five contributing countries. Asian countries have staked a strong hold among the entries, making up three out of the top five most popular countries, notably Japan, China and South Korea, the latter of which is the second most popular contributing country overall. However Russia remains the strongest contributor, with the greatest number of overall candidates hailing from the competition’s home country. Russia is also behind the majority of entries for the most popular disciplines, with 70 applicants each for the Piano and Vocal categories.
Included amongst the applicants are top prize winners from other leading international music competitions, including the Cliburn, the Queen Elisabeth, the Chopin and the Rostropovich Competition.
The record number of applicants has also been in evidence on the competition’s new website, which has had over 60,000 visits since its launch last year. The new website, which allowed for online applications and payment, was specifically designed with the competitors’ ease of use in mind.
In terms of the individual disciplines of Piano, Vocal, Cello and Violin, Piano has triumphed as the most popular overall, with over 160 total entries.  However the applicants in the Cello category represent the largest number of different nations, with candidates originating from 32 countries.
The screenings for each discipline are now underway with the juries consisting of some of today’s most distinguished artists; for Piano, Marcello Abbado, Dmitri Alexeev, Sergei Babayan, Jürgen Meyer-Josten, Denis Matsuev and Pavel Nersessian; for Cello, Young-Chang Cho, David Geringas, Sergei Roldugin, Martti Rousi; for Violin, Philippe Graffin, Boris Kuschnir, Barry Shiffman and for the Vocal category, Craig Rutenberg, Alla Brosterman and Renate Kupfer.
Mr Rodzinski, General Director of the Competition and President Emeritus of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, comments “To see such a large number of entrants from all over the world has been hugely encouraging. We are not only delighted to receive applications from such a variety of countries but also very excited by the substantial number of entries from musicians of an extremely high calibre, including top prize winners from other world-class music competitions.”
The competition will consist of three rounds of live performances, and is scheduled for June 14th-July 2nd, 2011.  Moscow will play host to the pianists and cellists from June 15-30th and to a Closing Gala Concert on July 1st. The violinists and vocalists will compete from June 16th-30th and June 22nd-30th, respectively, in St. Petersburg, where a Closing Gala Concert will take place on July 2nd.
Editors’ Notes
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Jury screening dates:
Piano screening (10.01 - 16.01):
Jury: Marcello Abbado, Dmitri Alexeev, Sergei Babayan, Jürgen Meyer-Josten, Denis Matsuev and Pavel Nersessian.
Cello screening (26.01-29.01):
Jury: Young-Chang Cho, David Geringas, Sergei Roldugin, Martti Rousi.
Violin screening (06.02-10.02):
Jury: Philippe Graffin, Boris Kuschnir, Barry Shiffman.
Vocal screening (07.02-11.02):
Jury: Craig Rutenberg, Alla Brosterman, Renate Kupfer.
About the International Tchaikovsky Competition For more than 50 years, the International Tchaikovsky Competition has been regarded internationally as one of the major events in the global music community and as an outstanding opportunity for extraordinary young musicians to gain international recognition and establish their careers. In Russia, the event is considered one of the country’s most valuable cultural assets.
The International Tchaikovsky Competition is held once every four years. The first, in 1958, embraced two disciplines – piano and violin. In 1962, a cello category was added, and the vocal division (with separate prizes for men and women) was introduced at the third competition in 1966. In 1990, the IX International Tchaikovsky Competition introduced a contest for violin makers.
Among the competition winners who have achieved worldwide recognition are: pianists Van Cliburn, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Mikhail Pletnev and Grigory Sokolov; violinists Gidon Kremer, Vladimir Spivakov, Viktoria Mullova; cellists Antonio Meneses, Natalia Gutman and Mario Brunello; and singers Evgeny Nesterenko, Paata Burchuladze, Elena Obraztsova and Deborah Voigt.
Under the competition chairmanship of such figures as Dmitri Shostakovich, Emil Gilels and Mstislav Rostropovich, past juries have included such legendary names as Sviatoslav Richter, Aram Khachaturian, David Oistrakh, Gregor Piatigorsky, Heinrich Neuhaus, Nadia Boulanger, Krzysztof Penderecki, Dmitri Kabalevsky, Irina Arkhipova, George London, Lev Oborin, Pierre Fournier, Maria Callas, Leonard Rose, Eugene List, Georgy Svirdov, Mario Del Monaco, Leonid Kogan, Carlo Zecchi, Joseph Szigeti, Fiorenza Cossotto, Natalia Gutman, Shlomo Mintz, Bidu Sayao and Magda Tagliaferro.
The XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition, 2011
The Chairman of the 2011 Organising Committee is the conductor Valery Gergiev, one of the most celebrated and influential musicians in the world today.
Leading Russian orchestras are invited to perform with the finalists in the last round of the competition. In 2011, for the first time, the competition will be presented simultaneously at a number of halls in both Moscow and St Petersburg.  Moscow will host the piano and cello competitions, while St. Petersburg will present the violin and vocal competitions.
Jury members in 2011 include Vladimir Ashkenazy, Nelson Freire, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Maxim Vengerov, Antonio Meneses, Teresa Berganza, Renata Scotto, Ferruccio Furlanetto and Krzysztof Penderecki.  Van Cliburn is Honorary Chairman of the Piano Competition; Honorary Chairman of the Vocal Competition Plácido Domingo.
The total fund of prize money for 2011’s XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition – which is being run in accordance with new sets of rules, regulations and procedures for application and voting – is approximately 350,000 Euros. In addition, the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition will collaborate with three major artist management agencies to organise concert engagements over three years for prize-winners, including performances with Valery Gergiev.  Tours will be arranged by London-based Intermusica for Europe, Asia, and Australasia, Opus 3 in New York for the Americas, and the Moscow Philharmonic Society for Russia.