Piano Forever Competition

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Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski
Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski

Israel is known for being the host of the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Masters Competition. However, another competition for young pianists takes place annually in Ashdod, bringing musicians as young as 6 to the stage. The competition takes place every year at Hanukkah, and will be held this year between November 11 and December 5. The competition will be held at the Monart Center in Ashdod. Admission to the competition events is free, so take this opportunity to get to know Israel’s next generation of pianists.

Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski
Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski

Competitions are a necessary hardship for any artist, but the Piano Forever competition offers a relatively relaxed atmosphere that encourages not just practice, but passion as well – and that is what leads to fine musicianship. It’s the perfect place for young pianists to find their voice.

The jury is comprised of Israel’s leading pianists and piano teachers, and is headed by pianist Professor Baruch Meir. The participants are divided into age groups, ranging from 6 to 28, with each group performing on a different day. They come from all over the country.

Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski
Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski

For a lot of the competitors, this is their first chance to perform on the stage. For the more seasoned piano students, it’s excellent practice for the competitions they’ll face later on. It also provides a learning atmosphere: the musicians return to the competition year after year, and the progress they’ve made can be easily noticed.

Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski
Piano Forever Competition/Photo: Pavel Tolchinski

The competition offers many, many prizes (a total of 100,000 NIS), so it’s never winner-takes-all. More prizes, provided by various organizations in Israel and abroad, are offered to the winners. The following are only some of these prizes, all meant to encourage young musicians and bring them to the stage:

The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra will invite the first-prize winners of each category to audition for a concert conducted by Maestro Zubin Mehta.

The Buchmann-Mehta School of Music will give an additional prize to the winners of the 19-28 age group: a special concert featuring the winners will take place at Tel Aviv University on January 20.

The Israel Chamber Orchestra will invite the winners to perform as soloists in concerts around the country during the current season.

The Ashdod Classical Orchestra will invite the first-prize winners of each age group to play a concerto, or a movement from a concerto, in their current season.
Professor Arie Vardi will host the winners of the competitions on his show “Intermezzo with Arik”.

The America-Israel Cultural Foundation will invite the three winners of the 9-11 age group to apply for their grant, usually offered only to artists above age 12.

The Eden-Tamir Music Center in Ein Karem will host the winners of each age group in a gala concert that will be broadcast on Kol Hamusica.

The Music Fest Perugia will award a participation grant to an outstanding pianist for the summer 2014 festival in Perugia, Italy.

Check out a short presentation about the competition featuring the very cute performers from last year:

The dates for the competition are as follows:
November 28, 9:00-21:00 – ages 19-28.
December 1, 10:00-20:00 – ages 16-18.
December 2, 10:00-20:00 – ages 12-15.
December 3, 10:00-19:00 – ages 6-11.
December 5, 18:00 – awards ceremony and gala concert.

The competition will be held at Monart Center for the Arts, 8 Derech Eretz, Ashdod. For more details, contact the Monart Center at 8545130/1/170 – 08 or via email at psanterletamid@gmail.com

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