The third Shanghai Isaac Stern International Violin Competition (SISIVC) will take place in Shanghai August 4-25, 2020. The Competition’s Organisation Committee has announced that it is officially open for global applications. In celebration of the centennial birthday of Maestro Isaac Stern in 2020, a gala concert has been added to commemorate the longtime friend of China.

The jury is co-chaired by conductor David Stern and violinist and pedagogue Professor Vera Tsu Weiling, and includes artist manager Martin Campbell-White, violinist and pedagogue Glenn Dicterow, Emmanuel Hondré (Director of Programs at the Philharmonie de Paris) violinist and founding member of the Shanghai Quartet Weigang Li, violinist Ning Feng, violinist, pedagogue, and founding member of the Emerson String Quartet Philip Setzer, violinists and pedagogues Maxim Vengerov, Hagai Shaham, Joel Smirnoff, Kyoko Takezawa, and cellist Jian Wang.

Davd Stern
(c) Jean-Baptiste Millot

Fedina Zhou, Executive President of the Organisation Committee and President of Shanghai Symphony Orchestra says: “Since its establishment, the Competition has imposed stringent rules – we disclose the pupil relationship with judges and all scores. The Competition’s fairness has been internationally acknowledged in its two previous editions. In fact, making scores entirely public is rarely seen at competitions around the world, » Zhou added.

Applicants are required to complete the online application by 23:59 GMT+8 on January 20, 2020 and the video submission for pre-selection by 23:59 GMT+8 on February 28, 2020. The public rounds to be held in Shanghai include the Quarter-Final Round, Semi-Final Round and Final Round. « Twenty-two days in total – from the press conference to the gala concert – the contestants will be faced with the longest-ever competition, » said Fedina Zhou. « The length has been increased mainly due to the gala concert. It has been newly created to pay tribute to Isaac Stern who acted as an ambassador for Sino-American cultural exchange. »

As an international violin competition offering the largest monetary award in the world – $100,000 – SISIVC is committed to spreading Chinese works to other parts of the world and has created the Best Chinese Work Performance Award to drive these efforts. Following the two Chinese concertos performed in the past two editions – Butterfly Lovers by He Zhanhao and Chen Gang, and La joie de la souffrance by Qigang Chen – the Competition unveiled the newly commissioned Chinese work for the 2020 edition: Violin Concerto No. 2 by Zhou Tian, Artist-in-Residence with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra (SSO) for the 2019/20 season.

For more information about SISIVC, please visit

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