XVI International Tchaikovsky competition contestants announced

The famous Russian music competition has announced the 231 contestants for the International Tchaikovsky Competition taking place 17-29 June.

ITC is held in Moscow and St Petersburg and backed by the Government of the Russian Federation and the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. Back in 2018, the competition celebrated its 60th anniversary and this year there will be 38 nations represented, including representatives from Australia, Belarus, Greece, Iran, Portugal, United Kingdom, Turkey, Russia, Taiwan and Venezuela. Of the 231 candidates, 25 musicians will take part in each of the categories specialising in piano, violin and cello, 60 singers, and 96 contestants in the two new categories for wind and brass instruments.

The top prize for the competitors is USD100,000 (€89,700) along with the first prize of USD30,000 (€26,900) and  gold medals. New for this edition is the addition of a vocal prize in memory of Russian operatic baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky, carrying a cash prize of USD15,000 (€17,00), and a performance in Krasnoyarsk, the hometown of the singer.

Each category will have its own jury chair with the previous winner, pianist Denis Matsuev, acting as chair for piano. Joining Matsuev is the founder and executive director of the Verbier Festival, Martin Engstroem, who will judge the violin category. Meanwhile the chair for woodwind instruments will be Denis Bouriakov, principal flautist of Los Angeles Philharmonic.