The biggest piano prize in the USA?

The biggest piano prize in the USA?


norman lebrecht

August 01, 2018

Larry Johnson reports on South Florida Classical Review:

The Miami-based Chopin Foundation of the United States has raised its top cash prize to $100,000 for 2020, making it the highest piano competition award in the country. … In addition to the $100,000 cash prize, the winner of the National Chopin Competition will automatically be allowed to compete in the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw.

More here.



  • Bea says:

    The Gilmore Artist Awards are higher, but this is really a “selection process” not a competition per se.

  • Grazzidad says:

    Interestingly, the Pogorelich Competition, won by Gwhyneth Chen in 1993, offered a $100K first prize. So, in a sense, this is just playing catch-up. It’s odd that world-class competitions that take place every 4-5 years offer prizes lower than regional tennis tournaments, which says something about relative valuations in society.

    • Hugh G. Rection says:

      The difference is that regional tennis tournament results depend to an extent of 90% on the players’ capabilities and 10% on umpire judgements, whereas in most piano competitions it is the other way round.
      You can imagine how much dosh goes into the pockets of the organizers, jury and hangers-on with prize money at this level.

      • Bea says:

        Are you kidding, big Dick (that is the implication of your pseudonym, right?) The non-profit organizers’ pockets are lined with the satisfaction of knowing that they just spent the last 5 years raising funds (begging) from the American public for the cash to support the young artists at barely the level they deserve. If only there was the same kind of money swirling around classical events as there is around sporting arenas . . .

  • Tony Magee says:

    I thought maybe the winner also got to play on Liberace’s Austrian rhinestone encrusted Baldwin SD-10 concert grand (pictured). I imagine the image is there to reinforce the concept of $100,000 being a large sum of prize money, which it is. A nice inclusion.

    • The View from America says:

      Marx and Engels might have wished for the Classless Society. Little did they know we’d have it when Liberace came along …