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Yamaha and Pianist Magazine, in association with Classic FM, The Jazz and Jazzwise, present THE PIANISTS

Published: Wed April 25, 2007  News Feed

If you’re passionate about your piano playing then make a note of THE PIANISTS, the acclaimed competition for outstanding amateur players. There’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for you to scale new heights and take your music from the living room to the stage of one of London’s most prestigious venues.

Following the highly successful inauguration of this biennial competition in 2005, entries for the 2007 event are now being sought from amateur jazz and classical pianists. Players must be over thirty years of age and must not derive their principal income from playing – it’s that simple! All you have to do is submit a short recording to the organisers and you could find yourself playing in front of a capacity audience at the Cadogan Hall in November.

But that’s only the beginning of the story.

Winners will also have the fantastic opportunity of being broadcast on Classic FM and The Jazz and achieving the ultimate dream for many an amateur pianist: the classical winner will play a movement from a concerto with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra whilst the jazz winner scoops a set with Julian Joseph’s internationally acclaimed band at a major London venue. As many people will know Julian’s band stars some of the world’s hottest jazz players including saxophonist Steve Williamson and drummer Mark Mondiser. Both experiences will prove truly life-changing for the successful winners.

The first event for outstanding amateurs was a great success and received massive publicity culminating in a sellout final at the Cadogan Hall. Pianists Sabine Vinck and Eddy James triumphed and were named the UK’s most outstanding amateurs after dazzling the 1000 strong audience with fiery interpretations of Prokofiev’s Sonata No 1, a beautiful Clementi Sonata and a ‘Jazz Journey’ from the 1920s to the 1940s.

Unique to the UK, the aim of THE PIANISTS is to provide a high profile, professionally produced showcase for the country’s most passionate amateur piano players and assist them in reaching new levels whist promoting piano repertoire and piano playing to new audiences. This year’s judges include Noriko Ogawa, Martin Roscoe and Piers Lane for the classical category and Julian Joseph, Jamie Cullum, Jason Rebello and Gwilym Simcock for the jazz. THE PIANISTS scheme is supported by Classic FM, The Jazz and Jazzwise magazine, who will be covering all stages and providing regular information and updates throughout the year.

Closing date for entries is the 10th August followed by the semifinal in September. The six finalists will then be invited to perform at the Cadogan Hall in Sloane Square – one of the capital’s most prestigious venues – in November.

Yamaha’s Mike Ketley comments, ‘It gives me great pleasure to be once again launching our Competition for outstanding amateur pianists. There are many competitions for young, up-coming pianists but our scheme is unique in that it offers a real opportunity for talented adults who play for the sheer love of their art to enter a vibrant, stimulating and friendly environment amongst like-minded players. For amateur pianists the opportunity to perform with the Royal Philharmonic or Julian Joseph would otherwise be impossible. We found with our first event that the quality of amateur players throughout the UK was simply staggering, these people deserve a wider audience and that’s exactly what we provide.’

Pianist magazine’s Erica Worth adds, ‘The atmosphere of the Finals night in 2005 was electrifying. In fact, the atmosphere throughout the whole competition from the launch to the end was totally unique. That’s because all applicants were in for the sheer joy and love of the piano, not for the money and not because they had to do it. For those who made it to the semi finals and the finals, this their dream realized – that is, to actually perform like professionals on a big stage!’

For full details of how to enter and further information on rules please visit: www.thepianists.co.uk

 

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