The idea for a Dudley Piano Competition was first suggested in 1967 and it then evolved in 1968 from piano classes at the Dudley Festival of Music and Drama. It had a concerto final, was held annually until 1989 when it became a biennial event and from 1991 to 1995 was opened to competitors from overseas.
Many past winners including Benjamin Frith, Andrew Wilde, Graham Scott, Alicja Fiderkiewicz and Paul Lewis went on to establish successful careers and past competitors have also included internationally acclaimed pianists; Ian Hobson, Peter Donohoe, Joanna MacGregor and Timothy Horton.
The Dudley International Piano Competition then took a break until it re-emerged in 2000 as a competition with a recital final open to pianists of all nationalities studying or resident in the British Isles.
Attracting entrants of an extremely high standard from all the main colleges, its success in 2000 and 2001 dictated that it should become a regular triennial event.
For the 2009 and 2011 competitions a concerto final in Dudley with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra replaced the recital final. In 2014 and 2017 the finals were held at Symphony Hall with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra as part of their Concert Seasons.
Our next competition is on 21st and 22nd November 2020, at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, with the final on 6th February 2021. Once again it will be a concerto final at the world famous Symphony Hall, Birmingham with the internationally renowned CBSO conducted by Michael Seal.
Our jury, chaired by Daniel Browell consists of distinguished pianists and teachers and can be seen below.
Concerto performance opportunity for the three finalists at Symphony Hall, Birmingham with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
£4,000 1st Prize (Sponsored by The Limoges Charitable Trust)
£3,000 2nd Prize (Sponsored by Kawai Pianos)
£2,000 3rd Prize
£750 4th Prize
£250 Audience Prize
£250 each semi final prizes (Sponsored by Waldrons)
Somm Debut CD Recording
(to be offered at the discretion of Siva Oke)
MEET THE PANEL
Daniel Browell enjoys a busy and varied performing career, having given recitals in the UK, Europe and North America since receiving acclaim in the national press for his London Southbank recital in the Purcell Room in 2006. He gave his BBC Proms debut in 2008, as part of a composer portrait broadcast live on BBC Radio 3, and in 2009 he made his concerto debut at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall. In 2010 he returned to The Bridgewater Hall to give a solo recital as part of the Manchester Midday Concerts Society’s prestigious season.
Daniel particularly enjoys his collaborative projects with instrumentalists and singers; he has performed with YCAT winner Kathryn Rudge at the Wigmore Hall and on many occasions since, and he regularly works for the BBC Philharmonic, recently performing piano quartets in the BBC Philharmonic’s chamber music series in Salford.
His future plans include the release of a CD of contemporary British composers, featuring the piano studies of Philip Venables, which he premiered at the Purcell Room.
Daniel’s teaching experience varies from his work at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, to Yorkshire Young Musicians at Leeds College of Music and Repton School in Derbyshire. Daniel is currently Associate Head of Keyboard at Birmingham Conservatoire.
Gordon Fergus-Thompson is an international concert pianist and Professor of Piano at the Royal College of Music in London. He has recorded 20 commercial CDs, made over 200 broadcasts on BBC Radio 3 both as recitalist and concerto player with all the BBC Symphony Orchestras, and has toured extensively in Europe, the Middle East,South Africa, Japan and China. A Gulbenkian Fellow, Gordon Fergus-Thompson has won innumerable awards for his recordings of the complete works of Debussy. In recognition of his status at the Royal College he was awarded a Fellowship by Prince Charles in 2009.
Acknowledged as one of Britain's finest pianists, Lucy Parham applies her sensitivity and imagination not only to concertos and recitals, but also to portraits in words and music of such composers as Schumann, Chopin, Rachmaninoff, Liszt and Debussy.
She first came to public attention as the Piano Winner of the 1984 BBC Young Musician of the Year. Since her Royal Festival Hall concerto debut at the age of 16, she has played throughout the UK as concerto soloist with most of the major British orchestras and been a frequent recitalist at the Wigmore Hall. She has toured the USA with the BBC Concert Orchestra, and Mexico and Turkey with RPO, with whom she has now given over 60 performances. Abroad, she has toured with the Russian State Symphony, Sofia Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Polish National Radio SO and L'Orchestre National de Lille. She has made over twenty recital and concerto CDs including all her Composer Portrait concerts.
She also appears frequently as a broadcast presenter on BBC Radio 3 and 4 and BBC TV, and has been the Director of two Schumann Festivals in London. She presented four series of Kings Place Coffee Concerts and two Sheaffer Sunday Matinée series at St Johns Smith Square. She is a Professor of Piano at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London
Siva Oke was born in Cyprus and has spent most of her life in music, either as a performer or as a listener and recording producer. She studied piano at Santa Cecilia Conservatoire, Rome and is also a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, London. She has also studied with Cyril Smith whom she regards as a major musical influence in her early career as a performing pianist. On joining the record industry for a number of years, first at Philips and then at EMI, Siva eventually left to freelance as a music producer. In the early 80s she joined the pioneering CD label Unicorn-Kanchana as General Manager, where she remained for 12 years. SOMM Recordings, which she founded in 1995 is now a successful and well-established label with a wide-ranging catalogue of acclaimed recordings. Running SOMM as executive and recording producer has, for years, formed a major and enjoyable part of her activities.
Graham J Lloyd was born on the Wirral in 1963. He studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester with the renowned Polish pianist Ryzard Bakst. He has worked as a soloist - Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 1; chamber musician - Beethoven complete Sonatas for Violin and Piano, Schubert Trout Quintet and in particular as an accompanist to many singers. He has specialised in recording the works of his partner Ian Venables. He has recorded Venables’ music for strings and piano with members of the Coull Quartet on the SOMM label and the same composer’s complete piano music on the NAXOS label. On his most recent recording, he is coupled with the Carducci Quartet and Roderick Williams. He combines a busy teaching career with recording, adjudicating and arranging.