On November 28th 2013 I participated in the 6th Young Pianist of the North international competition in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Actually, I went to Newcastle the day before to use the practice piano and to try out the piano that we would play on the day: an excellent Kawai grand piano. This year, the celebrated composers were Sergei Rachmaninov and Pjotr Tchaikovsky, which meant that all programmes needed to include at least one piece by one of them. The class that I entered was the 11 and under class, with 15 competitors who were from different countries. Before I performed, it was really nerve-racking but, after I had been playing for several minutes, I rather enjoyed it. Each contestant played for up to 15 minutes (or face disqualification) and my programme was:
August, Harvest (from ‘the Seasons’) Tchaikovsky
Sonata no. 23 in F minor ‘Appassionata’ Beethoven
The Flight of the Bumblebee Rimsky-Korsakov/Rachmaninov
After the jury had listened to all the competitors, they announced the results and gave a master class. In addition, everybody received free books and manuscript paper. The experience was very valuable and I will definitely enter again next year.