Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition 2015 - schedule, tickets and more information

Last year's winner, Taek Gi Lee

Last year's winner, Taek Gi Lee - Credit: Archant

The Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition, fast becoming an important event in the cultural calendar, returns to the White Rock Theatre at the end of next month for eight music-filled days.

The 2015 competition has a new and extended format which will be more challenging than ever for the competitors. For the first time, they will have to present two complete concertos from memory. As well as playing their own chosen concerto, all those who go through to the second stage will have to perform the whole of a compulsory Mozart or Beethoven concerto.

“This reflects the increasingly high standard of the competition,” says Professor Frank Wibaut, the Chair and Artistic Director of the competition. “Having to present two whole concertos close to each other is quite hard, but it shouldn’t be a problem for really good players.”

Entries have been received from 30 different countries around the world, including China, Kazakhstan and Uruguay. After a careful sifting process, 43 young pianists have been invited to come to Hastings to play live in front of the distinguished international jury.

In morning, afternoon and evening sessions over the first three days of the competition, the competitors will display their talent by playing excerpts from the concerto they have chosen from the competition’s list. The orchestral part will be played by an accompanist.

12 of the 43 young pianists will be chosen to go forward to the second stage of the competition on Wednesday March 4 when they will play the whole of a Mozart or Beethoven concerto.

Six will then proceed to the semi-finals on Thursday March 5. They will each give a 25-minute recital of music of their own choice. “This always produces an exciting evening of many different styles of music,” says Professor Wibaut.

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One of the highlights of the week takes place on Friday March 6 at the Recital Room at Fairlight Hall. The three semi-finalists who do not go through to the final will be given a Masterclass – criticism, advice and encouragement - by distinguished members of the international jury. Tickets are £20 to include wine and canapés.

The competition will reach its climax on Saturday March 7. The three finalists will play a complete concerto with the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra. It will be one of the finest evenings of classical music to be heard in Hastings during the whole year.

Tickets for the Masterclass at Fairlight Hall on Friday March 6, which starts at 6pm, are £20, which includes refreshments. Tickets for the final at 5.50pm on Saturday March 7 are £10, £16 and £25.

For further information and tickets, go to www.HastingsConcertoCompetition.co.uk



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