Tchaikovsky Competition? It’s all about pianists

The competition goes into its final concerto stages today, for cello, violin and piano.

The qualifying stages on the previous two instruments have been subdued. Decent performances, safe list of finalists, nothing to set the heart racing.

It was much the same last time, and the time before. You have to go back to 1982 to find the last name-drop artist to win the violin competition. (Don’t even mention the voice contest.)

The piano, though…. that’s where the action is.

There are three or four hotly-tipped winners out of six finalists, all of them high-calibre. We’re still calling it as a Lucas vs Lukas showdown, but there’s an excited following for the American George Li, and an air of anticipation for each of the other three.

It’s all down now to fingers on keys.

lukas geniusas

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  • I haven’t seen the Cello competition, but notice Elschenbroich is not among the finalists. Can’t be a too bad field of Cellists then.

    The piano competition, which I followed, was/is outstanding. At least 25 really good candidates. The finals will be a treat.

  • George Li’s performance on Sunday in the finals of the piano competition was truly transcendent. His creative and profoundly musical renditions of the Tchaikovsky First and the Prokofiev Third quite literally brought tears to my eyes. Above and beyond the jaw-dropping technical virtuosity, the prodigious feats of memory and stamina, and the formidable challenge of performing under such scrutiny and pressure, this 19-year-old’s interpretations were deeply moving and exhilarating.

    The largely Russian audience responded with a thunderous ovation, including the ultimate Slavic compliment: rhythmic clapping. Thrilling!

  • I think some incredible violinists are competing in the violin finals, like Clara Jumi Kang and Yu Chien Tseng.

  • I might be a George Li fan now. I acknowledged his brilliance in a prior post but felt he lacked depth. But his insane Prokofiev concerto has won me over. I wouldn’t want to hear it played like that all of the time, but for a competition, when it’s necessary to stand out in a crowd of phenomenal talent, I think it was a smart move. Even the jury seemed entertained by it. I have really liked Sergey Redkin throughout the entire competition. Geniusas is brilliant, he has everything. I’d like to see the top three be 1-Geniusas, 2-Li, and 3-Redkin but I think Debargue will ultimately be in the top three and Redkin will be out.

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