Steinway & Sons is proud to hold our second annual Steinway Junior Piano Competition for young pianists ages 18 and under. The competition, which will be held at M. Steinert & Sons, is an extension of our unwavering commitment to the pursuit of superior artistic expression through piano performance. Applications for applicants under the age of 18 must be submitted by a parent or legal guardian.
January 15, 2019 – Registration opens. To participate, select your state and nearest Steinway showroom under “Start an Application” to the left. A NON-REFUNDABLE $75 USD registration fee will be required.
April 1 – Registration closes. We encourage participants to submit their applications well before this date to ensure participations and to allow showrooms adequate time for scheduling.
M. Steinert & Sons competition dates:
May 4-5 and May 18-19 – Round One*
June 1-2 – Finals and Award Ceremony** *
All participants in the 2019 Steinway Piano Competition held at M. Steinert & Sons will have an assigned live audition time for the competition. No videos are required. Each participant will be notified of their assigned audition time two weeks prior to their respective divisions.
**Award Ceremony and Winners Concert TBA
First Place Prizes: Division I – $400
Division II – $700
Division III – $1000
First, second, and third place winners will receive commemorative medals and national recognition on the Steinway & Sons website. All participants will receive a certificate of participation and judges’ comments.
REQUIREMENTS AND REGULATIONS
Two contrasting pieces for solo piano from different eras of Western classical music: one selection from the Baroque or Classical era and the second from the Romantic or Twentieth Century. Both selections must be performed from memory. Original compositions and improvisations are not permitted. Repeats may be played at the discretion of the performer, but are not required. In some regions, the judges may need to cut performances off during the audition period.
Division I: Ages 9 and under (max 8 minutes)
Division II: Ages 10-13 (max 10 minutes)
Division III: Ages 14-18 (max 15 minutes)
Contestants will be graded on the following criteria:
Musicality and artistry: Students who score well will not simply play their selected pieces cleanly, but will demonstrate an appropriate understanding of aspects of performance including artistic and stylistic interpretation. Judges will look for students who exhibit attention to details of musicality such as phrasing, dynamics, touch, and shaping, and who can elevate their performance from merely playing the written notes, to giving a dynamic and engaging performance.
Technical mastery: Students who score well will demonstrate that they can meet the technical requirements of their selected pieces. They should be able to comfortably navigate the technical challenges of the literature. Their performance should be free of major note or fingering errors. Students should look to utilize an appropriate tempo and, when required, clean pedaling.
Adherence to the score: Students who score well will demonstrate a nuanced understanding of the composers’ intent in both pieces they perform. Their performances should reflect instructions given by the composer in the score including (but not limited to) tempo, style, pedaling, dynamic markings, etc., as well as customs of the period in which their selected piece was written.
Stage presence: Students should demonstrate a high level of professionalism throughout their audition. Students who score well will display both confidence and charisma, whether it is their first time participating in a competition, or they are more experienced. Students should keep in mind that if they should receive an award, they will be expected to perform in front of their peers and guests. This includes appropriate concert performance attire.
Memory: Students are expected to perform their selected pieces without referring to the score. The judges may, in the case of a memory slip, choose to prompt a student at their discretion; however, such instances will detract from the student’s overall score.
Additional Regulations: Age requirements apply to applicant’s age as of April 1, 2019. Applicants must reside in the United States or Canada. Students who have participated and won first place in the competition last year may not enter again in the same division.
Students, teachers, parents, and audience members should not approach the judges for any reason during the competition.
Assigned audition slots are final. If a competitor misses their turn, they will have forfeited their chance to participate (no refunds will be offered). Judges will be announced in the application for the competition ASAP. If a change is made, this will be announced prior to the competition.
Close relatives or students who study or have studied with any of the announced judges are not eligible to compete. A refund will be issued to these students.
Students are only allowed to participate at one audition location. If the student’s local authorized Steinway showroom is not participating, the student may choose to participate at another participating showroom of their choosing.
Competitors are responsible for their own expenses to participate in the competition, including the cost of their travel.
Contestants should wear their best performance attire.
Qualifying competitors must perform live in order to be considered.
Judges reserve the right to cut off a performance at their discretion.
Evaluations for each round of the competition made by the jury committees are final. Participants and their families and teachers are not allowed to communicate with the judges.
Steinway & Sons and M. Steinert & Sons reserve the rights to photograph, record, or video the auditions of contestants and winners and to use these documents for marketing purposes. No extra fee will be paid to the contestants. Each winner is solely responsible for reporting and paying any and all applicable taxes related to the prize(s) and paying any expenses associated with any prizes, which are not specifically provided for in the official rules.
Each winner must provide the Company with valid identification and a valid taxpayer identification number or social security number before any prize will be awarded. Any person winning over $600 in prizes from the Company will receive an IRS form 1099 at the end of the calendar year and a copy of such form will be filed with the IRS.
Steinway & Sons reserves the right to the interpretation of the Terms and Conditions of the Regulations.
If you should have any questions please email Christina Dietrich at firstname.lastname@example.org