Over the past three weeks, from the beginning of February 2024, the Zabeel Theatre in Dubai’s 5-star Jumeirah Zabeel Saray hotel has been playing host to the 3rd Grand Edition of the Classic Piano International Competition.

Featuring pianists gathered together from all around the world through the 14 Ways to Dubai initiative, this contest has pushed each of the participating pianists to the full extent of their abilities, encouraging them to move out of their comfort zones and showcase the very best of their skillset.

Now, the eyes of the world are all turning to Dubai as the contest enters its final round, with the participant pool, which once numbered in the dozens, having been whittled down to just nine candidates for this fourth round, as the stakes get higher than ever before.

Within a few short days, one of these pianists will be walking away with a First Prize worth a staggering €150,000, consisting of a €100,000 cash award, and a 10-concert tour with a total honorarium of €50,000. The second-ranked contestant, meanwhile, will be taking home €50,000, with the third being awarded €25,000, and the remainder of the finalists each taking their own smaller shares of the competition’s €250,000 total prize fund.

As was the case in the third round, the pianists will once again be performing alongside the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra (ASSO) for this phase, who will be led by their Founder, Artistic Director, and Principal Conductor, Sergey Smbatyan. As befits such a crucial stage of the competition, the candidates will have a wide degree of freedom with regard to their choice of repertoire, with each pianist being required to perform one concerto from an extremely varied list that includes seminal offerings from Ludwig van Beethoven, Frederic Chopin, Sergei Prokofiev, Sergei Rachmaninov, Robert Schumann, Piotr Tchaikovsky, Johannes Brahms, and Franz Liszt.

Each performance will be minutely scrutinised by the 15-member jury board that has been overseeing each phase of the competition, including Ashley Wass (UK), Zhe Tang (China), Hüseyin Sermet (Turkey), Marios Papadopoulos (UK), Giuliano Mazzoccante (Italy), Hae-Young Kim (South Korea), Stanislav Ioudenitch (USA), Eleanor Hope (Austria), François-Frédéric Guy (France), Pavel Gililov (Austria), Peter Donohoe (UK), Kirsten Dawes (South Africa/Germany), Epifanio Comis (Italy), Massimiliano Caldi (Italy), and Gisèle Ben-Dor (USA/Israel).

However, the finalists will have to contend with more than just the pressure of having the jury evaluate their performances, since this final round of Classic Piano, like the third round before it, is being streamed live, and broadcast to all four corners of the world on medici.tv. In addition, the world’s leading classical music channel has also sent one of their senior presenters to host a series about Classic Piano itself, incorporating the events on stage, various full-length interviews, and behind-the-scenes segments offering a glimpse into the proceedings. As part of this series, medici.tv are also presenting a live studio show featuring a variety of esteemed experts within the world of classical music.

For all the latest updates about the 2024 Classic Piano International Competition please visit the official website at www.classicpiano.eu .


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