Unisa International Piano Competition Kicks off 25 January

The 13th Unisa International Piano Competition takes place from 25 January to 6 February in the Z K Matthews Great Hall on Unisa’s main campus in Pretoria.

Pictured here is piano technician John Cavanaugh who has just given the two Steinway concert grand pianos in the hall a meticulous service. 

He is the director of the “Steinway at Oberlin technical session”, held annually in Oberlin in Ohio and a technical instructor for the C.F. Theodore Steinway Technical Academy. There are only three facilities that are part of the Academy — New York Factory, Hamburg Factory and the Oberlin Conservatory.

The Unisa Music Foundation is extremely pleased to have had someone of Mr Cavanaugh’s calibre service the pianos, since the competition will feature almost 40 hours of live piano music performed by 28 young pianists from 14 countries. The candidates can choose either of the two pianos.

The event will commence with an opening concert by the Unisa Music Foundation Wind Ensemble and the Unisa Music Foundation Symphony Orchestra.

The young conductor Jaco van Staden will lead both groups in this special concert on Monday 25 January at 19:00 in the Z K Matthews Great Hall. Die programme includes pieces by Gustav Holst, Tchaikovsky, Leeroy Anderson and Edvard Grieg. Entry is free for the opening concert.

The competition consists of two categories. Rounds 1 to 3 are all solo piano.

The four rounds of the jazz category will take place on 26 January, 29 January, 01 February and 05 February. Similarly, the four rounds of the classical category will take place on 27 January, 30 January, 02 February and 06 February.

Rounds 1 to 3 will consist of three sessions per day: 10:00, 14:00 and 19:00 and tickets will be sold at the door.

The final round on 5 and 6 February takes place at 19:00 and tickets are sold at Computicket.

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