In the summer of 2013 I participated, for the fourth consecutive year, in Ya-Fei Chuang’s piano masterclass at the Mozarteum International Summer Academy in Salzburg, Austria. Each summer stay in Mozart’s birth city during these last years has been an unique, incomparable experience – two weeks of masterclasses, concerts and competitions in a community of the most talented teachers and students arrived from all over the world, interspersed with impressive sunsets by the Salzach, night walks in the picturesque streets of the old town, and excursions into the gorgeous neighbouring mountain landscapes of the Austrian Alps.
Having arrived in Salzburg with not very defined repertoire projects – two of Scriabin’s sonatas and a couple of other works that I intended to perform at the Open Piano Competition in the fall – it was an unexpected honour to find myself nominated, and eventually selected, as one of the ten Prize Winners of the Summer Academy 2014, for my performance of Scriabin’s last sonata – the vibrant, luminous Tenth.
The Prizewinner concert and ceremony (Preisträgerkonzert) took place in the evening of Friday, August 23 at the majestic Grosser Saal of the Mozarteum. The other nine awardees were Davide De Zotti (organ), Giulio Biddau, Nozomi Nakagiri (piano), Elli Choi, Wendi Wang (violin), Midori Maruyama (viola), Margo Arsane (soprano), Andrzej Lampert (tenor) and Rick Zwart (bass baritone). The youngest among the winners, American violinist Elli Choi, was only twelve years old. My warmest congratulations to every one of them!
The concert was reviewed by the Salzburg newspaper DrehPunktKultur. The website of the Mozarteum International Summer Academy, with all the information concerning masterclasses and related events is here. A truly recommendable musical experience!