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2019 Competition Final with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the White Rock Theatre

Due to heating difficulties at St Mary in the Castle, which could not be sufficiently rectified and the lack of availability of the White Rock Theatre, Hastings International Piano have made the decision to move round one of the competition to Rye Creative Centre.

The second round, semi-final and finals of the competition will then return to Hastings and take place at the White Rock Theatre.

Hastings International Piano is delighted to announce that a unique partnership has been agreed with the Royal College of Music to create a graduate orchestra, administered in Hastings to offer Royal College of Music graduates orchestral training and paid performance opportunities during the concerto competition semi-finals and throughout the year. We are also thrilled that the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra will return to accompany our finalists during our two-night final. Steinway and Sons, the most prestigious piano maker in the world was recently announced as the piano sponsor for the next concerto competition.

With a first prize of £15,000, the competition in 2022 will provide twelve semi-finalists with the chance to perform a full concerto with the Royal College of Music Prince Consort Orchestra and six finalists the opportunity to perform a complete piano concerto with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Competition entries were made by video audition only, via the competition website and in a move to enhance the environmental sustainability of future competitions. Earlier in November our pre-selection jury, led by our president of the jury Professor Vanessa Latarche made their final selections of which young pianists would be invited to compete at the competition live rounds.

Ian Roberts, managing director of Hastings International Piano says: “Because of the rescheduling of our concerto competition to February and March 2022, we were due to hold round one of the concerto competition at multiple venues because of scheduling difficulites. It recently came apparent that our first round of the competition could not take place in a venue without sufficient heating, which would have damaged our pianos. The team led by Professor Vanessa Latarche explored many other possible venues in Hastings and unfortunately could not find a suitable space for rehearsals, performances and our film crew.

“We are grateful to Rye Creative Centre who are able to host our first round from the 24th-26th of February and delighted to be returning to the White Rock Theatre for our second round, semi finals and finals. For the first time our semi-finals will be accompanied by an orchestra, providing twelve young pianists the opportunity to perform a concerto with orchestra. The newly established Royal College of Music Prince Consort Orchestra will provide post-pandemic employment opportunities for exceptional graduates and I am proud that this orchestra will give its debut performance in Hastings at the White Rock Theatre during our competition.”

The Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition has evolved from its earliest days as part of Hastings Music Festival to become an internationally-renowned competition for young concert pianists from around the world, attracting 360 applicants from more than 40 countries for our 2022 competition via our video auditions, 50 of which will be invited to compete in Hastings.

To support the growth of audiences and educational outreach opportunities, Hastings International Piano produced the inaugural Hastings International Piano Festival, which took place over two weeks in February and March 2020. The charity also presents fundraising concerts with many of the world’s finest artists and ensembles.

Image Credits: HIPCC .

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