Leeds International Piano Competition to take place in an additional eleven cities this year
The first round of 'The Leeds' usually takes place in five cities, but this year will be hosting competitors at venues in 16 countries across the world
The first round of this year's Leeds International Piano Competition will take place later this month and for the first time will be launching in 16 countries worldwide, with 62 competitors from 28 different countries. In previous years, the first round of the competition has only hosted auditions in five countries, but this has been extended to allow all competitors to take part amid extensive travel restrictions due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
16 venues across the world will be open to between one and 14 competitors as part of the competition's first round, with each pianist performing on a Steinway Model D and the same camera and audio set-up, all complying with social distancing regulations. Rather than having a jury or audience present, each recital will be filmed and watched by a remote jury. These performances will be available at a later date for audiences to watch online. This year's jury includes Adam Gatehouse, the competition's artistic director; pianists Simone Dinnerstein and Noriko Ogawa; and record producer Martin Sauer.
The first round of the competition will take place from 28 March to 8 April. 24 musicians will proceed to the next round in September, when the second round, semi-finals and final will take place in Leeds, UK.
The venues for the first round of this year's Leeds International Piano Competition are as follows:
Ingesund School of Music
University of the Arts
Cleveland Institute of Music
Kansas City (US)
Royal Academy of Music
Frost School of Music - University of Miami
New York (US)
Seoul (SOUTH KOREA)
University of Music
Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.