1st Steinway Competition in Japan

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Steinway Japan announced recently that it would stage 1st Steinway Competition in Japan in April, 2012.

The project follows the Piano Competition for Youth Under 16 years old that Steinway & Sons initiated in 1936. Seventy five years later, it has been expanded to 8 countries including Germany (in Hamburg and Berlin), Belgium, France, Denmark, Holland, Spain, Sweden and very recently China.

The contestants are required to play music selected from Classical, Roman periods to modern times. The competition aims to provide young budding pianists with an opportunity to play Steinway piano at an early stage in front of large audience and pleasure of playing the piano.

The 1st Steinway Competition takes place on April 1, 2012 at Ohji Hall, Tokyo. The juries include Ikuyo Kamiya, Kyoko Tabe, pianists, and Motoyuki Teranishi, music critique. Among the winners, one pianist will be invited to perform at International Steinway Festival staged from September 7 through 10, 2012 in Hamburg.

Not originated to cite performing level, but the Piano Competition for Youth Under 16 Years Old sent out such world-class pianists as Christoph Eschenbach (1995 winner), Martin Helmchen (multiple awards winner from 1989 and 1997), Yu Kosuge (1995 winner) and Alice Sara Ott (1999 winner).

Kazuhiro Goto, president of Steinway Japan, said, "We are expecting very much to stage the first competition in Japan. It will serve young pianists an opportunity to experience prestigious Steinway piano, and also our small grand models." Not directly linked to sales, he believes that the competition will increase exposure of Steinway piano and communication with future promising pianists.

Major concert halls in Japan have equipped with Steinway piano, but not all pianists have access to the famed brand. For young children and students, it surely will be a dream experience. Preliminaries will be staged at 6 Steinway dealers having a concert hall throughout Japan.

Launched 14 years ago, Steinway Japan has expanded its business with 20 full-time staff now. Goto is pleased that the company has grown to stage the 1st competition in Japan. Application should be submitted from June 1 through August 1.

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