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Classical Notes: May 21, 2009 Archive

Everbody's a winner

Posted at 12:36 PM on May 21, 2009 by Alison Young

In sports, if you make the most goals or run the fastest or punch out the other guy, you win.

In music, it's not so cut-and-dried. Winning a major music competition can often mean the difference between a career taking off or fizzling out. But choosing the one lucky "winner" from a highly-talented group can be tough. With the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition set to begin Friday, the Dallas Morning News explores the challenge for the judges to look into the future and decide which pianist has the right mix or skill, virtuosity, musicality, flair and promise to ensure a successful international career. One way the Van Cliburn distinguishes itself from other competitions is by giving the process enormous coverage, including a webcast, so even one of the "losers" will be seen and heard by an international community of press, managers and concert-promoters and that in itself may be enough to kick her career into overdrive. It should be an exciting event to watch, but since the judges are human too, don't count on your favorite pianist winning!

note: coming up next month in the Twin Cities, it's the Minnesota International Piano-e-Competition June 29 - July 10. Stay tuned for our coverage of the competition at Classical Minnesota Public Radio.

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