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32 Virtuosos. 1 Passion.
Next Competition July 2020

One of the world's greatest Piano Competitions

Sydney International Piano Competition of Australia

History

The Sydney International Piano Competition has, from its inception, held events at the highest international level inspiring pianists and audiences alike and stimulating interest in the piano and music in general. It has provided a showcase platform for outstanding pianists from all over the world and assisted with the development of their careers as concert artists.

It is one of the major international events of its kind in the world. Founded by the late Miss Claire Dan AM, OBE, Rex Hobcroft AM and Robert Tobias, it was inaugurated in July 1977 and has since been held every four years, except in 1988 when it was brought forward to coincide with the Bicentenary of Australia celebrations. The Competition was admitted as a member of the Geneva based World Federation of International Music Competitions in 1978, the first Australian competition to be accepted as a member.

About our Founders

Claire Dan AM, OBE

Claire Dan AM, OBE was born in Hungary 1920, and became an Australian citizen in 1954. She committed her life to the performing arts and improving opportunities for artists both internationally and in Australia.

In 1976 she founded the Cladan Cultural Institute of Australia, a private philanthropic body established to encourage and develop cultural exchange. Her aim through the Insitute was “to help music, theatre and the arts, and to encourage young people” and to bring prestige to the musical profile of Australia. One of Dan’s first achievements with the help of Rex Hobcroft, Director of NSW Conservatorium of Music, was to establish the Sydney International Piano Competition of Australia; the foundation continues to this day to be a major sponsor of the Competition, providing on-going financial support.

Rex Hobcroft, AM

Rex Hobcroft was one of the most universally admired figures in Australian music.

A teacher, conductor and administrator and notably the first Australian to play the complete cycle of Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas in public. He held directorships at the Conservatoriums of Sydney and Tasmania. Hobcroft was a co-founder of the Competition and was one of the international jurors for the Competition over a number of years. Many of his innovations have been incorporated into other competitions around the world.

Robert Tobias, OAM

Robert has had a great interest in piano since he was young and is one of the co-founders of the Sydney International Piano Competition. He has been a lifelong advocate of the benefit and joy that the piano brings to people and to that end has sat on either the Executive Committee or the Board of Directors of the Competition for more than 35 years and has been involved with the Competition since its inception in 1977. Robert has been a lawyer for more than 45 years, and practices with global law firm, DLA Piperin Sydney. His focus in the corporate world is on regulation and compliance and he also advises on directors' duties and corporate governance.

What makes this Competition unique

Sydney is not only a significant centre of the arts, but a city which has produced and fostered artists of international distinction, whose contributions to music are well known. The Sydney Opera House is a symbol of the city's commitment to attaining the highest standards in all areas of the performing arts. The Sydney Conservatorium of Music, in the centre of the city with its ‘back-yard’ the beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens, is home to the Competition once again in 2016.

First prize winners from previous competitions

2016 Andrey Gugnin

Russia

2016

2012 Avan Yu

Canada

2012

2008 Konstantin Shamray

Russia

2008

2004 John Chen

New Zealand

2004

2000 Marina Kolomiitseva

Russia

2000

1996 Sergei Tarasov

Russia

1996

1992 Xiang-Dong Kong

China

1992

1988 Alexander Korsantiya

USSR

1988

1985 Du Ning-Wu

China

1985

1981 Chia Chou

Canada

1981

1977 Irina Plotnikova

USSR

1977

Our Team

Piers Lane AO

Artistic Director

Send Email Piers Lane AO

Marcus Barker

Chief Executive

Send Email Marcus Barker

Megan Staal

Marketing Manager

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Eva Frey

Social Media Coordinator

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Carolyn Grant

Avv!so PR

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The20

Brand Development and Design

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Patrons

His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Ret'd)

Vice Regal Patron 2016

His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Ret'd)

Maestro Valery Gergiev

Artistic Patron 2016

Maestro Valery Gergiev

Our Board

Virginia Braden OAM

Chairman

Virginia Braden OAM

Neville Grace

Director

Neville Grace

Michelle Johnston

Director

Michelle Johnston

Dr Michael Kennedy

Director

Dr Michael Kennedy

Sam Miller

Director

Sam Miller

Ron Ogden

Director

Ron Ogden

Elizabeth Stuart

Director

Elizabeth Stuart

Robert Tobias OAM

Director

Robert Tobias OAM