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Laurie Niles

Special Awards and Final Gala Concert for the 2013 Montreal International Musical Competition

May 20, 2013 at 4:24 AM

How heartening to see such a big turnout on Friday night for the final Gala Concert of the 2013 Montreal International Musical Competition!

The three laureates -- Marc Bouchkov (first prize), Stephen Waarts (second prize) and Zeyu Victor Li (third prize) -- and three remaining finalists -- Fédor Roudine, Ji Young Lim and Chi Li -- played to a nearly-full house at the Maison Symphonique de Montréal.

Above, I have linked the performers' names to their semi-final performances, because I do believe the semi-finals truly showcased their emerging artistry, and in many cases they gave truly stunning performances.

Montreal gala
Left to right, Maxim Vengerov, Stephen Waarts, Chi Li, Zeyu Victor Li, Ji Young Lim and Marc Bouchkov. Photo: Gunther Gamper

This final concert -- well, it was a bit more like those final Olympic figure skating exhibition galas, when the competition is over, the athletes are exhausted, and nobody is making their triple-lutz jumps any more. Maxim Vengerov finally did get to conduct something besides the Tchaikovsky Concerto, with Chi Li playing the last movement of the Mendelssohn, Ji Young Lim playing Saint-Saens "Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso," Zeyu Victor Li playing Ravel's Tzigane and Marc Bouchkov playing Sibelius Concerto. Fedor Roudine reprised his last movement of the Tchaikovsky and Stephen Waarts, the first movement of the Brahms.

Winners of the special awards were announced in an awards ceremony that preceded the performance. They included:

Best performance of the Compulsory Canadian Work ("Rhapsodie pour violin et piano" by Jean Lesage)
Prize: $5,000
Luke Hsu, 22, of the United States

Radio-Canada People's Choice Award
Prize: $5,000
Stephen Waarts, 16, of the United States

Wilder and Davis Award for the Best Semi-Final Recital
Prize: $2,500
Marc Bouchkov, 22, of Belgium
(Hear that performance, with Victor Kissine "Caprice" (beginning); Brahms D minor Sonata (10:29); and Ernst "Last Rose of Summer" (33:35), here)

MIMC Grants for the Unranked Finalists
Prize: $2,000 each
Chi Li, 19, of Taiwan
Ji Young Lim, 18, of South Korea
Fedor Roudine, 20, of France


From Anne-Marie Proulx
Posted on May 20, 2013 at 6:36 PM
Thank you for the nice blog and competition covers!
From Graham Emberton
Posted on May 20, 2013 at 7:25 PM
As a former ice skater I enjoyed the exhibition gala analogy :) (although I would say some of those pieces in the final concert are worth a triple lutz, at least!)

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