30 competitors announced for Van Cliburn International Piano Competition

In spite of recent events in Ukraine, the competition is allowing several young Russian pianists to compete this year

Kate Liu

The organisers behind the quadrennial Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, which will take place from 2-18 June 2022 in Fort Worth, Texas, has announced this year’s 30 competitors, which, in spite of Russia’s military action in Ukraine, includes several young Russian pianists.

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They are:

Tianxu An, China, age 23

Yangrui Cai, China, 21

Albert Cano Smit, Spain/Netherlands, 25

Dmytro Choni, Ukraine, 28

Federico Gad Crema, Italy, 23

Anna Geniushene, Russia, 31

Francesco Granata, Italy, 23

Arseniy Gusev, Russia, 23

Masaya Kamei, Japan, 20

Uladzislau Khandohi, Belarus, 20

Honggi Kim, South Korea, 30

Elizaveta Kliuchereva, Russia, 23

Shuan Hern Lee, Australia, 19

Andrew Li, United States, 22

Yunchan Lim, South Korea, 18

Denis Linnik, Belarus, 26

Kate Liu, United States, 28 (pictured)

Ziyu Liu, China, 24

Jonathan Mak, Canada, 25

Georgijs Osokins, Latvia, 27

Jinhyung Park, South Korea, 26

Changyong Shin, South Korea, 28

Ilya Shmukler, Russia, 27

Vitaly Starikov, Russia, 27

Clayton Stephenson, United States, 23

Yutong Sun, China, 26

Marcel Tadokoro, France/Japan, 28

Sergey Tanin, Russia, 26

Yuki Yoshimi, Japan, 22

Xiaolu Zang, China, 22

In a statement, Jacques Marquis, president and CEO of the competition said: ‘The Cliburn must and will remain true to its mission as an artist-supporting cultural institution, and we are dedicated to the power of this artform to transcend boundaries. We make no distinction between non-political artists based on their nationality, gender, or ethnicity. We stand firmly with the music community around the globe in its commitment to these ideals.

The hearts of the people of the Cliburn are with the valiant Ukrainians as they courageously defend their homeland from the Russian regime. What is happening goes against everything that humankind should stand for.’

In recent weeks two major piano competitions – the Honens International Piano Competition in Canada and the Dublin International Piano Competition – have announced that they will not be open to Russian pianists this year. The Honens, however, subsequently reinstated its Russian competitors following protests from the global music community and a petition from leading musicians against the ‘blanket boycott’ of Russian artists.

For the 2022 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, the total cash prize pot has been increased to $265,000, with $100,000 for the gold medal, $50,000 for silver, and $25,000 for bronze (2017 prizes were $50,000; $25,000; and $15,000, respectively.)

Sitting on the jury are conductor Marin Alsop, pianists Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Alessio Bax, Rico Gulda, Andreas Haefliger, Wu Han, Stephen Hough, Anne-Marie McDermott, Orli Shaham and Lilya Zilberstein.

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As usual, the entire competition will be webcast live for an international audience, with full details of the webcast announced on 3 May 2022. Running alongside the competition will be the Cliburn Concerts series, as well as 1000 Cliburn in the Classroom in-school, interactive music education programmes.