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Guide to the Parkening International Guitar Competition

Laureates: Where are they now?
Background information

The Parkening International Guitar Competition honours Christopher Parkening’s lifetime commitment to fostering musical excellence in young artists.

The competition is the most prestigious classical guitar competition in the world, with cash prizes in excess of $65,000—the largest prize amount of any classical guitar competition. After three days of intense public performances, the winner of the Parkening International Guitar Competition receives a gold medal, a $30,000 cash prize, and a title that may skyrocket a classical music career and change the winner’s life forever. The competition, first held in 2006, takes place every four years on the beautiful campus of Pepperdine University in Malibu, California, where Mr. Parkening is a Distinguished Professor of Music. With generous grants from Howard and Roberta Ahmanson, the competition brings together musicians from across the globe for a week of celebration, enrichment, and growth through the cross-cultural language of music. 

Held in conjunction with the Parkening International Guitar Competition is the Parkening Young Guitarist Competition, which identifies outstanding young guitarists (ages 17 and younger) and encourages their continued study and performance. It will be held May 28–29, 2019.

Fact file
SectionsGuitar
Deadline01 Nov 2018 - 06 Feb 2019
Finals28 May - 01 Jun 2019
WhereMalibu, United States
Age groupsMain competition: Adults age 18 or older | Young Guitarist Competition: 17 years old or younger
Prizes

Gold Medal: $30,000

Silver Medal: $15,000

Bronze Medal: $7,500

Fourth, fifth and sixth prize: $1,000

An award of $500 is presented to each of the remaining nine contestants.

Young Guitarist Competition: An award of $3,000 is presented to the winner, $750 is presented to each of the four semifinalists, and $500 is presented to each of the other competitors.

Meng Su First Prize Winner 2015

Final Round and Awards Ceremony