A consideration comes to mind on reading of Peter Donohoe`s perfectly correct remark about the Queen Elizabeth of Belgium competition going almost unnoticed as compared to the remarks,comments and discussions in the Warsaw,Moscow and Bolzano competitions.
Of course the mass media are more interested in mass murders, political gossip and football than they are in culture.
Belgium seems an exception that quite rightly Peter points out.
Not only are the rounds sold out but are also presided over by the Royal Family and all around the world via their exemplary streaming.
In short it is a National Treasure that fills all of us seeming minority with the hope to be reassured in knowing that history ,education and culture are the only sure ways to overcome prejudice and isolation.
Hats off to Barenboim for proving so eloquently with that extraordinary person Edward Said and their extraordinary West Divan orchestra .
But is the social media and relative sites of Norman Lebrecht etc the place to discuss seriously the jury,the contestants and the final judgments?
I personally from experience prefer not to get involved in this gossip but I think it is better to talk ,be talked about and fought over rather than the usual indifference and ignorance that is more often demonstrated.
Usually time has shown that the distinguished juries asssembled in most competitions get it right .
But what about the hundreds of wonderful talents that do not win this lottery~ maybe because they are not ready or maybe they are not the competing kind.
Andras Schiff,Mitsuko Uchida,Angela Hewitt,Paul Lewis,Janina Fialkowska all great artists playing before us today who had not won Tchaikowsky,Chopin,Busoni,Brussels !
There is no alternative to the International Piano Competition that I can think of for showing off the magnificent array of talent that is there for all that have eyes to see.All dedicating their youth to art, with the sole wish of having an audience with which to share their lifetime passion.
So it is with this in mind that streaming of all the contestants is so important and indeed in my opinion the raison d`etre of the “Piano Competition Circuit”.
I hear the price for Medici Streaming of Moscow was in the millions and maybe the other competitions too.But I have seen smaller less ambitious streaming from smaller venues that obviously could not and had not entered into that sort of budget.
Two examples in my experience come to mind, and I expect many more elsewhere, of a pianist in the rounds being heard worlwide and offered help and all important engagements.
Bolai Cao an extraordinary 17 year old at the Busoni came in fifth because the jury had had the difficult task of taking many rounds into consideration.
Bolai was heard on streaming and taken under the wing of the Keyboard Trust and offered concerts all over the USA and Europe whilst monitoring his very considerable talent.
Emanuel Rimoldi many thought should have passed into the second round in Moscow but was heard by a very discerning impresario in Miami and offered a very prestigeous engagement.
Julien Brocal played a remarkable Carnaval in Monza and was taken under the wing of the very remarkable and generous lady Marie Joao Pires who actually shares the platform with him .As does that other very remarkable lady Martha Argerich with her friends.
Did not Rubinstein do the same for Janina Fialkowska at his first Competition in Israel.
I cannot stress how important it is for the world to be able to partecipate at this remarkable array of talent.So at this point it is not only the chosen and just one who is the winner but it is also the talent that is the overall decisive factor in the end.
Talent will out.Should and must be the motto.
Thus getting away from the competitive football type mentality that can plague an institution where many illustrious musicians ,our own Peter Donohoe at the helm,give up their precious time to help future generations,and should be lauded and venerated instead of being accused and sometimes on social media, at least, abused.