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Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! #2786564
11/30/18 06:02 PM
11/30/18 06:02 PM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 116
Foster City, CA, US
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Ken Iisaka Offline OP
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Foster City, CA, US
The Van Cliburn Foundation (Or are they now just called, The Cliburn?) just announced the 2020 edition of the Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition:

https://www.cliburn.org/2020-amateur-competition

The finals with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra remains, but the number of competitors and stages was reduced. In 2020, there are three stages, down from 4 in 2016, and 48 competitors (down from 75) get invited. 24 additional "non-competitive" participants are also invited who will also play 15-minute recitals for the audience and the jury who will provide feedback.

For the 48 competitors, the preliminary is 15 minutes, up from 8-10 minutes in 2016 and 12 minutes since 2007.
20 competitors advance to the semifinal, which is a 28-minute recital. In earlier editions, the second stage was 18-20 minutes.
The third stage as a semi-final that was only in 2016 is eliminated. The third stage in 2020 is the final, as it was before, but it will be a concerto movement with the FWSO.

The concerto repertoire is changed a little, with an addition of the first movement of Mozart K.271, and all movements of Prokofiev Concerto No.3 being what I noticed immediately.

I hope to participate again, but I wonder I've used up too much room already, having participated thrice. Also, having had a chance to play the first movement of Prokofiev 3 this past summer at the Piano Texas festival checked off one big item in my bucket list. Perhaps I can still relearn the second or the third movement, which are also on the repertoire list.

Off the top of my head though, I'm thinking of bringing:

Medtner Forgotten Melodies II, Op.39: No.3 - Primavera, No.4 - Canzona Matinata, No.5 - Sonata Tragica
Liszt Funerailles, S.173, No.7
Chopin Polonaise Héroïque, Op.53
Bach WTC II, No.3, BWV 872

Perhaps I should add something from the classical period and more modern repertoire, too.

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Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2786569
11/30/18 06:27 PM
11/30/18 06:27 PM
Joined: May 2001
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Hakki Offline
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Non competitors invited to a competition!
Now that is really something new.

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2786600
11/30/18 09:13 PM
11/30/18 09:13 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 310
North of Los Angeles
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Learux Offline
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Sorry, I am not good enough.



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Schimmel SP-182T
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2786789
12/01/18 02:44 PM
12/01/18 02:44 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 22,296
New York
Mark_C Online content
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Nah, I don't think you need to worry about having used too much room. grin
There's always room for someone like you!!

I didn't make it last time when they had 75. Knowing our 'population,' I'd say getting into a field of 48 is about 5 times harder. Really. With 75, there's room for people who are real good but perhaps with 'issues' about their playing. With just 48, that probably limits it to people who are at least at a quasi-professional level. Of course I'll still try -- and I think I'm playing better, but I don't know if I'm playing 5 times better. ha

Your program looks pretty fine to me.

Mine might look something like:

Preliminary:
Chopin Etude in F minor, Op. 25 #2
Scriabin Etude in B♭minor, Op. 8 # 11
Beethoven Sonata in F# major, Op. 78

Semifinal:
Chopin Polonaise in F# minor
Scriabin Sonata #10

Concerto (yeah right): grin
Mozart A major, K. 488, last movement


Of course our repertoire sometimes turns over several times in a year and a half, so who knows.....
But the main question mark (for most of us) is simply getting in.
(I wouldn't go if I'd only get into the 'non-competition' thing.)

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2786936
12/02/18 01:46 AM
12/02/18 01:46 AM
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 1,697
Washington, DC
SiFi Offline
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The stakes have definitely been raised. Harder to get in. Harder to advance. Then there's all these new youngsters (I speak relatively) all over the world wanting a piece of the action. Michael Cheung, anyone? Some of the new talent showed up unexpectedly at WIPAC this year and, well, you know what happened there. But Cliburn is the big one, so we give it our all, right? I've become engrossed in my chamber music activities right now, i.e. Brahms Quintet, though I'm learning Chopin's Scherzo #4, so I hope to use that in my audition "mix tape" (that's my son's word for it). I just wish they'd included Beethoven 4 first movement.

Repertoire thoughts for me, randomly presented:
Schumann Novellettes 1, 2, 6, 8
Chopin Scherzo Op. 54
Balakirev Mazurkas 5 and 6
Beethoven something
Bach Partita #2 some combination of the last three movements

Concerto (yeah right):
Mozart K. 467 I, 488 III, or Tchaik 1 III

lol


SRF
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: SiFi] #2787012
12/02/18 10:38 AM
12/02/18 10:38 AM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 22,296
New York
Mark_C Online content
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Originally Posted by SiFi
Beethoven something

Cool -- I love that piece! grin

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787037
12/02/18 12:33 PM
12/02/18 12:33 PM
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Posts: 3,787
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Hakki Offline
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Simon will you consider going if you are selected as a non competitor ?

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Hakki] #2787047
12/02/18 01:06 PM
12/02/18 01:06 PM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 116
Foster City, CA, US
K
Ken Iisaka Offline OP
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Ken Iisaka  Offline OP
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Foster City, CA, US
Originally Posted by Hakki
Simon will you consider going if you are selected as a non competitor ?


Not a chance that will happen to Simon, but I can imagine it being a bit demoralizing, especially to first-timers.

Perhaps they will give the benefit of doubt to first-timers and invite them as a competitor, but for seasoned participants, the bar should be higher, no?

It is in Cliburn's interest to raise the bar as high as possible.

But it will be intense: 48 15-minute preliminary recitals in three days, and 20 28-minute semi-final in 2 days. That's already 12 hours of preliminary (8 sessions of 6 competitors plus semifinalist announcement?) and 10 hours of semis (5 sessions of 4 competitors plus finalist announcement?) When will the non-competitive participants play? Concurrently with the preliminary? During the "off" day between the semi and the final? Wow. It really will be so intense, even more so than previous editions.

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787057
12/02/18 01:23 PM
12/02/18 01:23 PM
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Posts: 3,787
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Hakki Offline
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English is not my first language. Maybe that is why I tend to interpret non-competitive participants as "not so competent players".

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787066
12/02/18 02:12 PM
12/02/18 02:12 PM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 420
Virginia
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DFSRN Offline
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Thanks for sharing this, I have only been taking lessons for 5 years, but I buy the DVD of the competitions. Those who even consider to complete are probably very few world wide. Just the thought that you can apply is phenomenal, what a life time accomplishment to be that good. That is what comes with dedication, perseverance, sacrifice, and motivation. One of my husbands friends won the Galax Fiddlers Convection years ago in the banjo competition. I asked him if he still competes. He said, I have placed before but is has taken me 30 years to win first place, that was my goal and after that I stopped competing. I thought wow, that was dedication for 30 years.


Deb
"A goal properly set is halfway reached." Zig Ziglar
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787177
12/02/18 08:11 PM
12/02/18 08:11 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 632
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Nordomus Offline
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God damn it I'm too old for Juliusz Zarębski International Music Competition, I'm too young for Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition, how to live frown

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787204
12/03/18 12:05 AM
12/03/18 12:05 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 956
Dublin
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johnstaf Online crying
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Dublin
I think Prokofiev 3 last movement would be my concerto choice. Or the first movement. The Tchaikovsky has always been a dream of mine, but the third movement by itself doesn't sound right. Also the first movement from any of the Mozart or Beethoven concertos would be great.

Now if it were possible to play all three movements, it would be Beethoven 4 without question.

First round:
Gubaidulina Chaconne
Maybe some Bach.

Second round:
Schumann Sonata no.3. It lasts exactly 28 minutes.

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Mark_C] #2787298
12/03/18 09:44 AM
12/03/18 09:44 AM
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 2,113
TwoSnowflakes Offline
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by SiFi
Beethoven something

Cool -- I love that piece! grin

I just snarfed my morning coffee on that.

You owe me a clean iPhone screen.

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787316
12/03/18 10:55 AM
12/03/18 10:55 AM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,027
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Tim Adrianson Offline
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The introduction of the "non-competitive" group is to me a very interesting new wrinkle indeed. Under this proviso, the members of the jury assessing your audition video (I understand that video is now required) will determine where they feel you belong after assessing all of the others, and of course must inform you of their decision. The question for me, if I were placed in the non-competitive group, is: "Would it be worth it to me to travel to Dallas-Fort Worth to participate in The Cliburn Amateur, knowing in advance that I was going to play just one 15 minute program?". And I believe that the Cliburn people have asked themselves that question, and are now confident enough to say with reasonable assurance that -- Yes. the great bulk of applicants want just the experience of playing in what has now become a prestigious international event, and would be willing to accept their locked-in "15 minutes of fame". If nothing else (and I think this is quite an important consideration), the participants then get to choose what they feel are theiractual best 15 minutes for them, as opposed to choosing pieces that really must of necessity reflect their virtuosic capability. And they don't have the pressure of standing behind 60 minutes of music, plus a concerto. Put in another way, most of the amateur applicants really do have a keen sense of self-awareness of their respective "levels", and would welcome the opportunity simply to participate in the Cliburn ambience, one loaded with kindred spirits.

Last edited by Tim Adrianson; 12/03/18 10:57 AM.
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787542
12/03/18 09:24 PM
12/03/18 09:24 PM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 113
SFBA, CA, USA
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justarobert Offline
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I'm pleased to see a longer opening round. Fifteen minutes is a substantial difference from ten in terms of what one can program. I haven't yet figured out how I feel about the non-competitive group; I'd have to see the details. The scheduling questions that Ken mentioned are important, and it's not clear what audience there will be.

Not that I'm likely to qualify, since they didn't like me enough last time around, and I've probably regressed relative to the applicant pool, but I'd be tempted to program the Liszt Ballade No. 2 for the preliminary round, and the Alkan Symphony for Solo Piano for the second round, after which point the jury would wave their hands in frustration and shout, "I thought we were done with Alkan after Ken!" (I know, single-piece performance rounds are bad ideas.) Probably Beethoven 3 (i) or Tchaikovsky 1 (iii) for the concerto round.

As a side note, I'm very jealous of Simon's getting to work on the Brahms quintet. One of these days, that or the two-piano version...

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2787972
12/05/18 06:58 AM
12/05/18 06:58 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 280
Virginia
coaster Offline
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I plan to apply and am torn on what I'll choose for the different rounds. Right now, I'm thinking based on what I'm working on now for a recital in March... so maybe I'll do something else

I will probably put Chopin's Ballade in G minor in there somewhere
and Bach, which I think I play pretty well - maybe a P&F in one round or maybe part or all of French Suite in G major in the other
I would like to do the entire Haydn 52 but not sure about that
and some Debussy, of course (but not the Arabesque this time... sorry, Ken!) Maybe la soirée dans Grenade and jardins sous la pluie. Or maybe l'isle joyeuse.
For the concerto, I'll probably plan the Tchaikovsky 3rd mvt.

There are a couple pieces I did in 2016 that I'd like the chance to do again, like that Hungarian Rhapsody. I still haven't done it to my satisfaction in performance. But who knows...

I'm glad we have a year to figure all this out.


aka Lady Arabesque
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Mark_C] #2788075
12/05/18 12:23 PM
12/05/18 12:23 PM
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,068
NY
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jon-nyc Offline
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by SiFi
Beethoven something

Cool -- I love that piece! grin


A tad overplayed, don’t you think?


If you don't talk to your children about equal temperment, who will?
Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Tim Adrianson] #2788368
12/06/18 11:26 AM
12/06/18 11:26 AM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,696
RonaldSteinway Offline
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Originally Posted by Tim Adrianson
The introduction of the "non-competitive" group is to me a very interesting new wrinkle indeed. Under this proviso, the members of the jury assessing your audition video (I understand that video is now required) will determine where they feel you belong after assessing all of the others, and of course must inform you of their decision. The question for me, if I were placed in the non-competitive group, is: "Would it be worth it to me to travel to Dallas-Fort Worth to participate in The Cliburn Amateur, knowing in advance that I was going to play just one 15 minute program?". And I believe that the Cliburn people have asked themselves that question, and are now confident enough to say with reasonable assurance that -- Yes. the great bulk of applicants want just the experience of playing in what has now become a prestigious international event, and would be willing to accept their locked-in "15 minutes of fame". If nothing else (and I think this is quite an important consideration), the participants then get to choose what they feel are theiractual best 15 minutes for them, as opposed to choosing pieces that really must of necessity reflect their virtuosic capability. And they don't have the pressure of standing behind 60 minutes of music, plus a concerto. Put in another way, most of the amateur applicants really do have a keen sense of self-awareness of their respective "levels", and would welcome the opportunity simply to participate in the Cliburn ambience, one loaded with kindred spirits.


Technically, there has not been a big change. It is actually less work for those good pianists. They just need to prepare two rounds. The first round is basically video competition. It is good for the organizer and also for the good pianists. By having a video competition for the first round, the organizer can choose up to 24 pianists who are decent enough. The question is whether the invitees for non-competing section will show up or not. It can be the organizer objective not to deal with so so pianists (not bad, but not good). In the past, those who did not advance to the second round are so so pianists anyway. I personally prefer this new system.

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: RonaldSteinway] #2788429
12/06/18 02:44 PM
12/06/18 02:44 PM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 116
Foster City, CA, US
K
Ken Iisaka Offline OP
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Ken Iisaka  Offline OP
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Foster City, CA, US
Originally Posted by RonaldSteinway
Technically, there has not been a big change. It is actually less work for those good pianists. They just need to prepare two rounds. The first round is basically video competition. It is good for the organizer and also for the good pianists. By having a video competition for the first round, the organizer can choose up to 24 pianists who are decent enough. The question is whether the invitees for non-competing section will show up or not. It can be the organizer objective not to deal with so so pianists (not bad, but not good). In the past, those who did not advance to the second round are so so pianists anyway. I personally prefer this new system.


I thought having a longer preliminary is a good idea: More people get to play longer programs. In previous years, people played a total of 20 minutes on average. In 2020, the average goes to over 30 minutes.

Having played the first movement of Prokofiev 3 with FWSO earlier this year at PianoTexas, I am gravitating towards the third movement of the same concerto for 2020. I haven't played it in 30 years...

Re: Cliburn Amateur 2020 Announced! [Re: Ken Iisaka] #2788432
12/06/18 02:56 PM
12/06/18 02:56 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 24,587
New York City
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Why not let the non competing pianist play longer than 15 minutes(up to 25 minutes, for example) if they want to? That might encourage more to actually show up.

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