The Arthur Rubinstein Grand Piano competition final begins

The concerts will be live-streamed on as well as on Tickets are required.

‘THE ARTHUR Rubinstein Competition will never be the same.’ (photo credit: ALEXIA MOUZA)
‘THE ARTHUR Rubinstein Competition will never be the same.’
(photo credit: ALEXIA MOUZA)
 The Arthur Rubinstein Grand Piano competition enters its final stage on Thursday, April 29. Over three days – Thursday, Friday and Saturday – six finalists will perform Beethoven’s piano concerti, accompanied by the Israeli Camerata Chamber Orchestra, as well as piano quintets. These concerts will take place at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. Sunday night, the competition will move to the Charles Bronfman Hall, where the young and aspiring musicians will perform concerti by Rachmaninoff, Brahms and Prokofiev with the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra.
“This was a most unusual music contest, and the most complicated one, confides newly appointed artistic director of the Arthur Rubinstein Competition Ariel Cohen. For the first time, due to COVID pandemic limitations, the competition’s first two stages were conducted over the Internet.”
He goes on to explain that the logistics were challenging, to put it mildly. 
“For us, it was an endless steeplechase. Thirty-two contestants – all of them excellent young musicians – performed in empty halls in five locations throughout the world. Usually, the logistics are not the major concern for music contests organizers, but not this time. To begin with, bringing the participants to the recording locations was far from simple – vaccinations, permissions, lockdowns, closed airports – you name it. But above all, we needed to equip the halls with top-notch recording and transmission equipment and to provide the participants with two pianos, for their choice. 
“To our surprise, the entire enterprise was a sheer success, which has gone far beyond our expectations. The contestants were more than satisfied with the conditions we had offered to them, while several jury members confided that this way of listening of the performances gave them an opportunity of even better concentration and attention to the most subtle aspects of the musical renditions.”
Cohen agrees that nothing could be compared to the thrilling experience of a live performance, but contemporary media offers amazing possibilities.
“We have introduced many novelties, but there is an idea, of which I am especially proud,” says Cohen. “We call it interpretation analysis. For this, we invited five Israeli pianists, who are also well known music lecturers: Astrit Balzan, Gil Shohat, Irit Rub, Orit Wolf and Tal Samnon. The idea was to explain to the audience how musicians perceive the music. The lecturers listened to the recorded performances of the contestants, and had enough time to analyze them and then on the same day offered the listeners their explanations.”
Cohen admits that it is too early to decide what elements of the competition he is going to keep or to change. “But one thing is clear: The Arthur Rubinstein Competition will never be the same.”
The final stage program is as follows:
29/4-30/4: Final A, Classical Concerto, with the Israel Camerata Jerusalem.  30/4-1/5: Final B, Chamber Music (both at the Tel Aviv Museum).
2/5-3/5: Final C, Grand Concerto with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.
The concerts will be live-streamed on as well as on Tickets are required. The concerts will also be live-streamed in five conservatories.