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It's that time of year again! Please use this thread for all discussion related to the 2022 Cliburn Competition. Some important links:

Calendar
June 2nd-18th: https://cliburn.medici.tv/en/schedule/

Stream
https://cliburn.medici.tv/en/

Competitors
Lots of familiar faces here from the recent competition circuit (Chopin, Tchaikovsky, Sydney, etc.), as well as several competitors who are entering the VCC for the second time: https://cliburn.medici.tv/en/competitors/

Jury
https://cliburn.medici.tv/en/jury/

They've gotten rid of the long list of "institutional" jurors who made up previous editions (Kaplinsky, Vardi, Pressler, etc.) in favor of more concert artists, in addition to diversifying the ages and genders of the jury (previously mostly 70+ males). A good step, IMO.

On a side note, I might attend the finals in person. If anyone else will be there, please DM me.

Repertoire
We're surprisingly light on Liszt Sonatas but heavy on most of his other rep (several people playing all the Transcendental Etudes, Dante, Spanish Rhapsody, transcriptions, etc.). Franck's Prelude, Chorale, et Fugue shows up from several people (a mistake, IMO; it's a better piece for a concert than a competition), as does Brahms-Paganini, Petrushka, Ligeti Etudes, and Prokofiev 7/8. The finals are mostly what you'd expect, with reams of Rach 3, Tchaik 1, and Prokofiev 2/3. I'd say that this candidate's programs intrigue me the most: https://cliburn.org/?performer=arseniy-gusev

On another note, there's been a big shift in classical music lately in terms of programming more music by historically under-represented demographics (women, BIPOC, etc.); little to no music in this category appears in this edition of the competition (two pieces total: Sofia Gubaidalina's Chaconne and Fanny Mendelssohn's Sonata in A major), and the rest is basically the standard competition repertoire from most people. That either means something or doesn't; it's just an observation on my part.

Predicitions
Who knows, really. Everyone plays at an astronomical level these days that it's impossible to predict what will happen with individual contestants, most of whom already have prizes from other major competitions. I will say however, that there's a familiar pattern: most everyone will play a stellar first round (100%) prepared, and from then the quality will start to drop because it's basically an extreme endurance test of juggling three recitals and three concerti in the span of two weeks. The finals usually end up being pretty dicey, so it's the more experienced players who can successfully run the gauntlet. My gut tells me that Shuan Hern Lee (who won the Cliburn Junior) will probably win a prize or make it to the finals.

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I admire the way they are handling the situation with the war in Ukraine. It has to be a stressful situation for the competitors, with one from the Ukraine and several from Russia.

Here's an article that covers the situation fairly well: Article from KERA

And here is the Cliburn competition statement from back in March: Cliburn statement

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Where are the competitors programs listed?

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Where are the competitors programs listed?

I think you have to click on each competitor to see what they are playing:
2022 competitors https://cliburn.org/2022-competitors/

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Here's the 2022 chosen repertoire sorted by composer (done by hand, no guarantees as to accuracy). As noted by Brendan, it leans towards the "usual competition repertoire". Gusev's including a piece of his own composition in there, something which I don't recall having been done in a while (if at all?)

For comparison, here's the same list, but from 2017.

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Originally Posted by Brendan
I'd say that this candidate's programs intrigue me the most: https://cliburn.org/?performer=arseniy-gusev
Did I read correctly that he is playing his own piece? I wish more pianists had the guts to do that.

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Originally Posted by kcostell
Here's the 2022 chosen repertoire sorted by composer (done by hand, no guarantees as to accuracy). As noted by Brendan, it leans towards the "usual competition repertoire". Gusev's including a piece of his own composition in there, something which I don't recall having been done in a while (if at all?)

For comparison, here's the same list, but from 2017.

Yay, I was hoping you'd do this! Looks like Rach 2nd Sonata wins for the solo rep, followed by several ties - 110 (ugh) and Prok 7/8. Interesting data.

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The Cliburn competition's been uploading old program books to the pages of each individual competition. I'm not sure how to get there directly from the Cliburn page, but you can find them if you Google (Year) Cliburn competition.

Up until the 1989 competition, the Cliburn had a fair number of requirements in terms of program (e.g. "A Bach Prelude/Fugue", or even "Bach's Italian Concerto" if you go further back). 1969 in particular had a fairly insane list of requirements. Here's the works Christina Ortiz (the eventual gold medalist) had prepared (I don't believe she played all of these; back then competitors had a list of pieces, and the jury chose what they wanted to hear):

Bach: Italian Concerto
Scarlatti: Sonata #3
Mozart: Sonata K 310
Beethoven: Sonata Op. 53
Chopin: Etude 25/11
Chopin: Nocturne in E minor
Brahms: Opus 118 Intermezzo
Schumann: Etudes Symphoniques
Liszt: Mazeppa
Dello Joio: Capriccio on the Interval of a Second (Commissioned work)

Mendelssohn: D minor Trio

Albeniz: Triana
Ravel: Scarbo
Prokofiev: Sonata #6
Chopin: B Minor Sonata
Fernandez: Second Brazilian Suite (competitors had to prepare at least one (20th century?) work from their home country)

Brahms: Concerto #1
Beethoven: Concerto #4
Rachmaninov: Concerto #1
Prokofiev: Concerto #2

The Brahms #1 and Beethoven #4 were required of all competitors that year. The Rachmaninov could be either Concerto #1 or the Paganini Rhapsody. Contestants had to choose from Prokofiev #2, Bartok #2, or the Barber Concerto.

Last edited by kcostell; 05/29/22 10:19 PM.
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Originally Posted by kcostell
Scarlatti: Sonata #3

I think we can safely offer a very large prize to anyone who can identify what that means. ha

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I'm kind of sad to see almost no love for Gershwin...

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It's actually listed as "Sonata #3 in C Major". By process of elimination (K.3 is in A Minor, P.3 isn't listed, and Cz.3 is in A flat major), I'm guessing it's L.3/K.502/P.408)

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That's just it: All one can do with that is guess.

AND.....may we add, even if someone knows what that means because they happen to know which C major Scarlatti sonata was played at that event, that wouldn't mean they knew or could know what "Sonata #3 in C major" by Scarlatti means.

Q.E.D. grin


BTW, I have the same trouble (and do the same laughing) when people say something like "Mozart Sonata # 6."

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It could be worse -- if you go back to 1966, there are competitors with just "Scarlatti: Sonata in (Key)" listed, or even "Scarlatti: Sonatas".

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Originally Posted by Mooseknuckle
I'm kind of sad to see almost no love for Gershwin...

Gershwin's own Preludes are too light for the level of this competition and played to death at lesser ones requiring an American composer. It would be nice to hear Earl Wild's song transcriptions, though. I can't recall Concerto in F or Rhapsody in Blue showing up in finals (I see they are on the 2022 approved list).

Hunting down Scarlatti L. and K. numbers is quite an adventure if the sonata's in some old Russian collection without anything to go on.
ha


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Originally Posted by WhoDwaldi
Gershwin's own Preludes are too light for the level of this competition and played to death at lesser ones requiring an American composer. It would be nice to hear Earl Wild's song transcriptions, though. I can't recall Concerto in F or Rhapsody in Blue showing up in finals (I see they are on the 2022 approved list).

Hunting down Scarlatti L. and K. numbers is quite an adventure if the sonata's in some old Russian collection without anything to go on.
ha

I was referring to the Semifinal Concerto competition. Only one competitor picked the Concerto in F, and no one chose Rhapsody in Blue. Similarly, only two out of thirty competitors chose a Saint-Saens concerto for their semifinal.

It was elating to see that the organization put these two composers on the list, and I'm saddened hardly anyone is picking them. I mean, hey everyone loves the Beethoven concerti, it's just that we're gunna hear like twelve of them now. I prefer a bit of variety!

As far as pieces being "too light" for the competition, I'm not certain this argument bears weight, as nine years ago (iirc), someone played some very easy Grieg dances in their prelim, and was ushered onto the quarter-finals.

Regardless of repertoire choices, I'm still amazingly pumped to watch every minute of this. I'm actually taking tomorrow, Friday, and Monday as vacation days from work so that I don't miss a beat!

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Yes, at least someone is playing Saint-Saens #5, The Egyptian. One of my all time favorite Concertos!

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Originally Posted by Mooseknuckle
I was referring to the Semifinal Concerto competition. Only one competitor picked the Concerto in F, and no one chose Rhapsody in Blue. Similarly, only two out of thirty competitors chose a Saint-Saens concerto for their semifinal.

It was elating to see that the organization put these two composers on the list, and I'm saddened hardly anyone is picking them. I mean, hey everyone loves the Beethoven concerti, it's just that we're gunna hear like twelve of them now. I prefer a bit of variety!
Very few would ever choose the Gershwin Concerto or RIB for a very big competition because they are not technically or musically demanding enough to show the limits of the competitor's technique and musicianship. They don't choose their rep to please the audience or give the audience variety. The competitors don't care that the audience will hear a lot of the same concerti.

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Can't watch much this morning, but it seems to be starting well with Osokins.

Does he really needs this? Already has a career, I would say. Guess winning wouldn't hurt. ha


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The Hough piece is decent enough but kind of repetitive. It is going to be driving me nuts by the end of the round!


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For anyone not able to watch things live -- the "on demand" listening (go to https://cliburn.medici.tv/en/ , click on "Replays") seems very well set up this time around -- performances are put up almost immediately, with timestamps added to the video if you want to navigate to particular pieces/movements.

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