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Competition: Carl Nielsen International Competition


The History of the Carl Nielsen International Competitions goes back to 1980 when the first violin competition was held in Odense. The first competitions for clarinet and flute took place in 1997 and 1998 respectively. Until now the individual competitions have taken place in rotation once every four years but the Odense Symphony Orchestra, which plays host to the events in Carl Nielsen’s own city of birth, has announced that in 2019 all three competitions will take place in the same period in March 2019.

Overall President of the Competitions’ Jury is Nikolaj Znaider who himself won the Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition in 1992. Znaider will preside over the Jury for the 2019 violin competition and will be joined by leading colleagues for the clarinet and flute competitions.

“With the Carl Nielsen International Competitions our aim is to identify and help launch the careers of extraordinary and versatile talent as they begin the long road ahead of them” says Nikolaj Znaider. “Joining us in Odense will be colleagues with a vast range of experience from different fields of performance and management, none of whom have dual roles as teachers and therefore completely unbiased. In addition to the benefits of the competition itself the jury, with their multiple connections across the international music scene, will be well placed to spread the word about emerging talent. We are all looking forward to welcoming the next generation of young musicians to Odense and to introducing them to the world of Carl Nielsen.”

The three competitions are open for violinists, clarinetists and flautists of all nationalities under the age of 30. All participants must be prepared to perform in recital, chamber music and concerto and the finalists must perform the Carl Nielsen concerto for their instrument (violin, clarinet flute). 

The 1st Prize in each category has a value of 25.000 Euros comprising a 12.000 Euro cheque and a CD recording with Odense Symphony Orchestra, to be released on the British label Orchid Records as well as ongoing mentoring and performance opportunities with prominent orchestras in Scandinavia and across Europe.

Fact file
SectionsViolin, Flute, Clarinet
WhereOdense, Denmark