First China International Music Competition announces Semi-finalists

The first China International Music Competition – newly created by the China Conservatory of Music and Global Music Education League with 20 pianists between the ages of 17 and 28 from all over the world competing for unprecedented prize money – 9 May 2019 announces the details of the 12 pianists who will progress to the Semi-final rounds of the Competition. They are competing for the chance to win unprecedented cash prizes, international management and the chance to perform in the Final concert with Yannick Nézet-Séguin and the Philadelphia Orchestra (20 May).

Among the pianists going through are three from Russia, two from South Korea, two from USA, and one each from Canada, China, Georgia, Italy and Kazakhstan. The two youngest competitors in the Competition have been selected.

The Semi-Finalists are (in alphabetical order):

Alim Beisembayev                          Kazakhstan         Age 21

Leonardo Colafelice                       Italy                       Age 23

Anna Hann                                          USA                       Age 23

Honggi Kim                                         South Korea       Age 27

Alexander Malofeev                      Russia                   Age 17

MacKenzie Melemed                     USA                       Age 24

Sandro Nebieridze                          Georgia                Age 18

Linzi Pan                                              China                     Age 24

Hans H Suh                                         South Korea       Age 28

Arseny Tarasevich-Nikolaev       Russia                   Age 25

Anastasia Vorotnaya                       Russia                   Age 23

Tony Yun                                             Canada                 Age 17

Each will now perform another recital and collaborate in a vocal recital for a chance to be among the six pianists chosen to progress to the first phase of the Final Round where they will perform a Classical concerto with the China Academia Orchestra. Three finalists will then be chosen to play a Final Round concert at Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts with The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by its music director, Yannick Nézet-Séguin. All performances apart from the Final Round concert will take place in the concert hall of the China Conservatory.

Music lovers in China and around the world can follow the progress of competitors and enjoy performances of the very highest standard from every round thanks to filming and live-streaming on, China’s leading TV and online platform for classical music and the arts, and, China’s leading video hosting service.

The pianists taking part were selected by the world’s foremost international music authorities and came from a total of ten countries - Australia, Belarus, Canada, China, Georgia, Italy, Kazakhstan, Russia, South Korea, and the United States. Several competitors currently attend the world’s leading conservatories, and many have already won prizes at major international piano competitions.

The Competition will award a first prize of US$150,000 and a gold medal, a second prize of US$75,000 and a silver medal, and a third prize of US$30,000 and a crystal award to its top three winners. In addition to this unprecedented purse, the gold medallist will gain representation by two major international artist management companies: Opus 3 Artists in the United States and Armstrong Music and Arts in China which, combined, will coordinate three years of international concert tours.

The Competition is led by Richard Rodzinski, who is also president emeritus of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition and former general director of the International Tchaikovsky Competition.

The distinguished international jury of the inaugural Competition includes: Li-guang Wang, president of the China International Music Competition, chairman of the Global Music Education League, and president of the China Conservatory of Music; Yoheved Kaplinsky, chairman of the jury and artistic director of the Competition; Dmitri Alexeev; Jan Jiracek von Arnim; Lydia Artymiw; Boris Berman; Michel Béroff; Ronan O’Hora; Warren Jones; Katarzyna Popowa-Zydroń; and Arie Vardi.

None of the competitors currently study or have ever studied with any member of the jury.