7-15 November 2020
The unprecedented events of 2020 have forced arts institutions worldwide to explore possible ways of fulfilling their cultural and social missions. Unfortunately, many festivals and music competitions have skipped or postponed their upcoming editions due to safety measures and travel restrictions in response to the global pandemic.
The Busoni Piano Competition, founded in Bolzano, Italy, in 1949, has decided not to give in and instead has developed an innovative new way of holding its preliminary stages that were originally scheduled to take place this summer: by turning this important first lap on the way to the grand finals in 2021 into The Glocal Piano Project, the Busoni-Mahler Foundation is taking a bold stance. The key message: instead of allowing the pressure of the pandemic to reduce the 70-year-old institution’s scope, it is asserting its international identity more decisively than ever by holding a hybrid form of both online and offline auditions at Steinway & Sons dealers all around the globe.
99 young pianists from 28 countries will be participating in more than 20 cities on four continents. Thanks to the commitment of Steinway & Sons, the young artists have the opportunity to play at or near their country of residence under the same, excellent conditions, featuring nothing less than a D-274 concert grand piano, Steinway & Sons’ legendary flagship instrument. The recordings of the auditions will be available on various platforms with a 24- to 48-hour delay. These performances will also be broadcast time-shifted on the internet to several audiences and via different platforms. Not only will the individual performances be judged by the international jury, composed of seven members headed by Elmar Weingarten, but also by an online audience invited to experience the Glocal Piano Project as one large online piano festival, and given its own, significant vote.
The recorded performances of all 100 participants will remain accessible online until the final stages in August 2021. A selection of the selected finalists’ performance will also be broadcast by the Foundation’s media partners Amadeus.Tv and Takt1. By launching the Glocal Piano Project, the International Ferruccio Busoni Piano Competition emphasizes its strong belief in defending diversity, artistic individuality and freedom, an idea best summed by Ferruccio Busoni himself: “Music was born free; to win freedom is its destiny”.
Jury: Elmar Weingarten, Saleem Ashkar, Davide Cabassi, Milana Chernyavska, Michail Lifits, Staffan Scheja & Minsoo Sohn
Locations (as of 23/10/2020): Beijing, Hong Kong, Taipei, Tokyo, London, Bern, Seoul, Barcelona, Paris, Hamburg, Munich, Moscow, Brescia, Houston, Cleveland, Los Angeles, New York City, Toronto, Vienna, Sydney, Helsinki, Budapest, Warsaw.