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We’re pleased to announce that the Richmond 2021 Competition will go ahead as a virtual event!

Our competitors and guest artists will participate remotely in a unique online event which includes performances by artists including the Richmond Symphony, Sphinx Virtuosi, Mark and Maggie O’Connor, Chloe Chua and Christian Li. Join us 14 – 23 May 2021 for an exciting programme of events which includes recitals, masterclasses, panel discussions and engagement programmes for and with the Richmond community.

“When we postponed the event last March,” said Gordon Back, Artistic Director, “we never imagined that we wouldn’t be able to bring the Competition to Richmond a year later. We made the difficult decision to hold the Competition virtually because the COVID pandemic would have made it impossible for us all to travel to Richmond from so many different parts of the world. We are determined to celebrate these incredibly talented young people, and to provide as much of the ‘Menuhin experience’ for them as we possibly can. Our wonderful partners in Richmond and the London team are working together to create a very special virtual event this May. We are all passionately committed to keeping the spirit of the Competition alive in this exciting new format.”

The Competition

In order to ensure a level playing field for all of our competitors, who will submit video files of their performances recorded around the world, we have provided them with guidelines to make their recordings. These are designed to ensure our competitors record in “one take” – just like a live performance. We have also adjusted the repertoire to ensure all of our competitors could participate, even those who were unable to work with pianists due to lockdown restrictions.

The Jury

Our panel of esteemed jurors continues to represent the highest calibre of educational institutions, orchestras and competition circuits. Due to scheduling and personal reasons, Ray Chen and Ralph Kirshbaum are unable to join us for the 2021 Competition. However, we’re excited to welcome violinist, conductor and pedagogue Alf Richard Kraggerud, Vice Principal at Barratt Due Institute in Oslo, and conductor Valentina Peleggi, the Music Director of the Richmond Symphony and Guest Music Director with the Theatro São Pedro in São Paulo, Brazil. You can read more about our jury members here.

Virtual events

The virtual 2021 Competition will include performances from guest artists including the Sphinx Virtuosi, Mark and Maggie O’Connor and others. The winners of Joint Junior 1st Prize from the Geneva 2018 Competition, Chloe Chua and Christian Li, will both perform solo recitals, and violinist and juror Angelo Xiang Yu will perform with the Richmond Symphony in the Gala concert.

In addition to the Competition rounds and performances, our online activities will include virtual masterclasses, meetings between competitors, guest artists and jurors, panel discussions, and engagement programmes. Students in grades K-12 in the Richmond area will have the opportunity to “Adopt a Performer,” a programme which will allow students to follow, learn about and interact with competitors who will “visit” the classroom virtually to talk with students and present short performances. In early May, Virginia Commonwealth University will present a virtual re-creation of “Violin Day,” offering clinics and workshops alongside a special performance by fiddler and pedagogue Mark O’Connor.

All 2020 ticket holders will be contacted in the upcoming weeks regarding the changes to the event structure.

We look forward to sharing all of these exciting events and activities with you! Make sure you follow us on social media and sign up to our newsletter to stay up to date.

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