The contest has released the names of its jury chairmen:
• Piano – Denis Matsuev, world-famous Russian pianist and gold medalist of the XI Tchaikovsky Competition
• Violin – Martin Engstroem, Founder & Executive Director of the Verbier Festival
• Cello – Sir Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall
• Voice – Sarah Billinghurst Solomon, retired Assistant General Manager for Artistic Affairs at the Metropolitan Opera
• Woodwind Instruments – Denis Bouriakov, principal flute of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Associate of the Royal Academy of Music
• Brass Instruments – Ian Bousfield, former principal trombone of London Symphony and Vienna Philharmonic, Professor at the Royal Academy of Music in London
The contentious choice is the violin chair, Martin Engstroem, who is not a specialist in the instrument but has appointed the Tchaik Competition chairman as music director at his Verbier Festival and is involved with other Putinocrats and oligarchs in founding a festival in Latvia.
State control has also tightened with the appointment of deputy prime minister Olga Golodets as co-chair with Gergiev of the Organizing Committee.