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PianoLink International Amateur Competition
#3002168 07/13/20 01:17 PM
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I was toying with the idea of applying to this. It's only 90 Euros. Anyone else planning to? It seems like it will be mostly or enrtirely virtual, so could be fun. Actually, unless the US gets a handle on COVID-19 within the next couple of weeks (yeah, right), it will have to be virtual for us since we're personae non gratae throughout the entire EU.

Here's the website, which can also be viewed in Italiano Français Deutsch Español Русский and 日本語: https://www.pianolink.it/en/amateurs-competition/


SRF
Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002176 07/13/20 01:34 PM
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One caveat: The link shows a photo of these other apparent contestants, who will be hard to beat:

[Linked Image]

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Mark_C #3002194 07/13/20 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
One caveat: The link shows a photo of these other apparent contestants, who will be hard to beat:

[Linked Image]

Are duets allowed?


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Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002268 07/13/20 05:56 PM
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I can't record my piano from the required angle. Ah well...

It's an interesting jury.

I see the director is Bruno Monsaingeon, who filmed Glenn Gould. He also filmed Piotr Anderszewski's Diabelli Variations, and worked with Sokolov too.

If I remember correctly, Alexander Romanovsky was in the final of the 2011 Tchhaikovsky Competition. His Rachmaninoff 3 was musically stunning. It was so refreshing to hear.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002272 07/13/20 06:12 PM
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Perhaps it's just me, but I'm finding the website a bit unintuitive. Do I have this right:


Eliminatory round: August 17, 2020

Entirely virtual
8-12min total repertoire
required to have one composition written before 1830, and one composition written after 1831


Solo Final Round: September 26, 2020

Will be held at Cremona Fiere in Italy, or virtually if legislation prohibits mass gatherings
15-20 minutes free choice, either in front of the jury or live streaming


From there, 5 winners will be nominated:

1st and 2 place of Categories A and B, plus Third place winner of category A OR B
Absolute (overall) first prize winner

That seems relatively straightforward, but the prizes are what is throwing me for a loop:

All 5 winners will participate in a winner's recital in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and Milan, Italy in 20201. The Absolute First Prize winner then gets enrolled to the PianoLink 2020/2021 Piano and Orchestra Workshop.

There are some pretty big commitments if you are lucky enough to win the absolute first prize (not that I would), but I'm having trouble understanding exactly what they are. For example, they expect you to play with an orchestra - but I can't find an approved rep list for it.

I might apply for this given the cheap entry fee just as recording/performance practice, but I highly doubt us Americans will be able to travel to Europe anytime soon due to how poorly our administration handled the Coronavirus.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
computerpro3 #3002280 07/13/20 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by computerpro3
....required to have one composition written before 1830, and one composition written after 1831...

Taken literally grin that means you can't do:

Most of the Chopin Op. 10 Etudes
The B minor Scherzo
The Op. 6 and Op. 7 Mazurkas
Schumann's Abegg Variations or Papillons

Not to mention some pieces by Henselt. grin

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002284 07/13/20 06:45 PM
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It's impossible to know how international travel will be affected over the next few months. I know an American who lives between here and the US. He went back a few weeks ago because he was afraid he wouldn't be able to travel to the US if he waited any longer. Now he's on his way back here, as he's afraid he wouldn't be allowed back into the EU if he waited any longer. It's all very strange. I don't think travel will actually be banned, but quarantine is probably going to be enforced.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002285 07/13/20 06:47 PM
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I wouldn't take any long flights unless I absolutely had to, and will be hesitant to do anything with airports or security lines or flights for some time.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Mark_C #3002292 07/13/20 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by computerpro3
....required to have one composition written before 1830, and one composition written after 1831...

Taken literally grin that means you can't do:

Most of the Chopin Op. 10 Etudes
The B minor Scherzo
The Op. 6 and Op. 7 Mazurkas
Schumann's Abegg Variations or Papillons

Not to mention some pieces by Henselt. grin

I found this an odd rule, since for example, one could play a WTC P&F plus a Chopin Op. 25 etude, but not certain Op. 10 etudes.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002293 07/13/20 07:06 PM
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It's even odder because of how they put it -- that is, if we want to be pedantic about specific wording, which I do. ha

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002296 07/13/20 07:16 PM
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Op. 10 Nos. 11 & 12 will do. 😀

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Mark_C #3002303 07/13/20 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
One caveat: The link shows a photo of these other apparent contestants, who will be hard to beat:

[Linked Image]

Are they playing Chopin's Waltz for the Little Dog (Op. 64 #1) or the Cat waltz (Op. 34 #3)?


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Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Sweelinck #3002315 07/13/20 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Are they playing Chopin's Waltz for the Little Dog (Op. 64 #1) or the Cat waltz (Op. 34 #3)?

Looks to me like one of them is playing one of them and the other is playing the other. smile

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
computerpro3 #3002324 07/13/20 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by computerpro3
Perhaps it's just me, but I'm finding the website a bit unintuitive.

That's putting it mildly. It took me about 20 minutes to get any useful information at all. The website has a distinctly Italian feel to it.

Originally Posted by computerpro3
I might apply for this given the cheap entry fee just as recording/performance practice, but I highly doubt us Americans will be able to travel to Europe anytime soon due to how poorly our administration handled the Coronavirus.
That's kind of what I was thinking. I have a British passport as well as my US one, but I'm not sure that would help, plus 8 hours in a plane is not appealing, I don't care how safe people say it is.


SRF
Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Mark_C #3002329 07/13/20 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by computerpro3
....required to have one composition written before 1830, and one composition written after 1831...

Taken literally grin that means you can't do:

Most of the Chopin Op. 10 Etudes
The B minor Scherzo
The Op. 6 and Op. 7 Mazurkas
Schumann's Abegg Variations or Papillons

Not to mention some pieces by Henselt. grin

Here's the Italian:

1. Almeno un brano scritto entro il 1830 compreso
2. Almeno un brano scritto dal 1831 ad oggi

I'm pretty sure "compreso" means inclusive in this contest, so we can rest easy about all those pieces by Chopin, Schumann, and Henselt. (What on earth made you think of Henselt?)

The French has "Au moins une pièce écrite avant 1830 (inclus)", so that kind of confirms it. I wonder why they left the English ambiguous.


SRF
Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002333 07/13/20 09:38 PM
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I'd love to go. I feel fairly safe at the moment, but I'm high-risk so it's safer just to stay home. It could have been great fun -although I wouldn't be able to record a video on my own piano as there's no way to position a camera to get the required angle.

Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002337 07/13/20 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by SiFi
(What on earth made you think of Henselt?)

Anything on any planet makes me think of Henselt. ha

As I've said here, but probably not in the last 100 years grin .....if I could wave a wand and be able to play any one concerto and perform it, it would be the Henselt Concerto.
(Yes, sadly I don't have to say which one because there's just one.) ha


Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
Mark_C #3002354 07/14/20 12:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
.....if I could wave a wand and be able to play any one concerto and perform it, it would be the Henselt Concerto.

Wow, that's some crazy stuff. I'd never heard his concerto before. It's impressive, though I want to listen again before drawing any serious conclusions. First time through I was pretty much blinded by the virtuosity in the outer movements and didn't pay enough attention to what was going on musically. (As when I was a kid, I skipped the slow movement, though I will listen to it next time around.)

As I'm sure you know, Henselt, who was sometimes called the "German Chopin", wrote piano studies that are occasionally performed today by individuals with the time and technique needed to learn them. I know someone who performed and recorded the entire Op. 2 and Op. 5 for his DMA. I spent some time on analysis and discussion of the etudes in my dissertation. Regarding his piano playing specifically, you might find this interesting:

Henselt, whose reputation and all-round ability as a pianist approached that of Liszt, could perform prodigious stretches and skips with apparent ease. Rubinstein subsequently attributed this ability to what he called "an abnormal formation of the hand." He also claimed that it was "a waste of time" to practise Henselt's studies for this same reason, concluding that "Henselt, like Paganini, was a freak."

I think this is the only time I've seen someone call someone else a freak and mean it as a compliment.


SRF
Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002356 07/14/20 12:33 AM
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Originally Posted by SiFi
Originally Posted by Mark_C
.....if I could wave a wand and be able to play any one concerto and perform it, it would be the Henselt Concerto.

Wow, that's some crazy stuff. I'd never heard his concerto before. It's impressive, though I want to listen again before drawing any serious conclusions. First time through I was pretty much blinded by the virtuosity in the outer movements and didn't pay enough attention to what was going on musically. (As when I was a kid, I skipped the slow movement, though I will listen to it next time around.)

As I'm sure you know, Henselt, who was sometimes called the "German Chopin", wrote piano studies that are occasionally performed today by individuals with the time and technique needed to learn them. I know someone who performed and recorded the entire Op. 2 and Op. 5 for his DMA. I spent some time on analysis and discussion of the etudes in my dissertation. Regarding his piano playing specifically, you might find this interesting:

Henselt, whose reputation and all-round ability as a pianist approached that of Liszt, could perform prodigious stretches and skips with apparent ease. Rubinstein subsequently attributed this ability to what he called "an abnormal formation of the hand." He also claimed that it was "a waste of time" to practise Henselt's studies for this same reason, concluding that "Henselt, like Paganini, was a freak."

I think this is the only time I've seen someone call someone else a freak and mean it as a compliment.

SiFi, the 2nd movement was my favorite!

Anyway, I generally feel the same way about the crazy virtuosity. First of all, thank you Mark_C for mentioning it as I learned several new things tonight due to your post.

While I'm not sure I think the concerto is the height of profundity, it deserves more recognition than it gets (I had never heard it) - particularly the second movement. And as a result of your post and how much I enjoyed the 2nd movement, I spent a very enjoyable couple hours searching these forums for lesser known composers that were favorites of members and found some true gems.

I actually listened to the entire set of Bortkiewicz Op33 preludes and I am almost certain I am going to learn one or two and add them to my competition rep. All because you mentioned Henselt!

Last edited by computerpro3; 07/14/20 12:42 AM.
Re: PianoLink International Amateur Competition
SiFi #3002359 07/14/20 12:44 AM
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Yes, I knew most of that, except:

Originally Posted by SiFi
.... piano studies that are occasionally performed today by individuals with the time and technique needed to learn them.

Never came across even "occasional" performances!

Quote
I know someone who performed and recorded the entire Op. 2 and Op. 5 for his DMA.

Cool!

Quote
I spent some time on analysis and discussion of the etudes in my dissertation.

Are you ****ing me? grin
That is super cool!

BTW, it's very surprising that you've delved so much into Henselt, but never came across the concerto!!!

The middle movement is, I think, the closest to Chopin I've heard anyone come, even including the "Chopin" movement in Schumann's Carnaval.

BTW, it's not for you that I specified "Schumann" -- I know that you don't need that.
But we're not writing just to each other, but to the world. smile

The pianist in that recording, Raymond Lewenthal, included together with that LP a little "bonus record" in which he talks about the concerto, quite interestingly if a bit over-didactically and patronizingly.
Well heck, here it is!! (on youtube, to my pleasant surprise)
Lewenthal lecturing to us about the Henselt Concerto as it were :-)

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