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Guide to the Honens International Piano Competition

Laureates - Where are they now?
In brief

Application submissions are accepted from 1 February to 30 October 2020. Applicants are evaluated on their proposed Competition programming, experience relative to age, and confidential reference letters.

Dates: The competition takes place between 14 and 22 October 2021 in Calgary, Canada.

Fact file
Deadline01 Feb - 30 Oct 2020
Finals21 - 22 Oct 2021
WhereCalgary, Canada
Age groupsPianists who are no younger than 20 years of age on 14 October 2021 and no older than 30 years of age on 22 October 2021, with the exception of previous Honens Laureates and professionally managed pianists, are eligible to apply.
The Honens Competition

Quarterfinals: Each Quarterfinalist performs a 40-minute solo recital and 10-minute interview with an arts journalist in either New York or Berlin in March 2021. 

(Dates: 11 to 13 March 2021 in New York, Venue: The DiMenna Center for Classical Music; Dates: 22 to 24 March in Berlin, Venue: Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler)

Semifinals: Each Semifinalist performs in two separate rounds:

· Semifinals I: a 65-minute solo recital which must include a newly commissioned 8-minute work by Canadian pianist / composer Stewart Goodyear;

· Semifinals II: a 60-minute solo / collaborative recital which must include one of Beethoven’s ten violin sonatas, one piece from Fritz Kreisler’s Alt-Wiener Tanzweisen, and solo repertoire to complete the program.

(Dates: 14 to 18 October 2021, Venue: Taylor Centre for the Performing Arts, Mount Royal University)

Finals: · Finals Part I: a three-part performance consisting of a Mozart concerto (from a prescribed list) with a string quintet, a set of Schubert lieder with a singer, and an encore announced from the stage;

· Finals Part II: any concerto composed after 1791, with full orchestra.

Prizes and artist development

Aside from the cash portion of the award, Honens offers its Prize Laureate one of the most comprehensive artistic and career development programs in the world which includes worldwide representation; debut recitals in career-building markets which may include Berlin, London, New York, and Toronto; residencies and special projects; coaching and mentorship opportunities; and the production, release, and worldwide distribution of professional recordings.

Honens Prize Laureate - One pianist - C$100,000

Finalists: Raeburn Prizes - Two pianists - C$10,000 each, plus a 30 minute English language interview with an arts journalist.

Semifinalists- Seven pianists - C$2,500 each

Best Performance of Commissioned Work - C$2,500

Best Performance of a Beethoven Violin Sonata - C$2,500

The Jury

Quarterfinals: Katherine Chi (Canada / USA), Loie Fallis (Canada), Roman Rabinovich (Israel / Canada), Gilles Vonsattel (Switzerland / USA);

Semifinals and finals: Michel Béroff (France), Earl Blackburn (USA), Imogen Cooper (United Kingdom), Janina Fialkowska (Canada / Germany), Stewart Goodyear (Canada), Ick-Choo Moon (Korea), Orli Shaham (Israel / USA).

Attending the competition

Audiences are welcome to attend the Semifinals and Finals in Calgary, AB. Quarterfinal recitals are not open to the public.

Next edition of Honens


For more information about the Honens International Piano Competition please visit their website by clicking here.

Travel expenses

Honens provides a portion of travel allowance to pianists invited to take part in the Quarterfinals in New York and Berlin, as well as round-trip transportation and accommodation to pianists invited to take place in Semifinals. Full details can be found in the Pianist Manual.