The subjective nature of musical performance means that perhaps it is impossible to hold a music competition without some accusation of bias, fixing or prejudice, but we decided that it is time to try: we set about planning a competition for conductors which aims to provide the fairest possible comparison of skills.
How? Well, we believe that finally the judgement of the ears is more important than that of the eyes, so we will be using the system adopted by orchestral auditions around the world and placing the jury behind a screen, unable to know who is conducting or in what style; there is no other way to ensure an impartial process and provide a genuine opportunity for emerging talent to shine.
Of course, in order for this to happen the conductors need to be working with musicians who are able to respond quickly and appropriately. To provide for this, we are collaborating with the wonderful Radom Chamber Orchestra. This orchestra has – to date – played for eight Conductors’ Academy masterclasses and has become a source of wonder to participants, who marvel at the incredible responsiveness of the musicians.
We are delighted that Maestro Yuri Simonov has agreed to be the Patron of the competition. Unfortunately he is not able to join the jury but he has kindly agreed to participate in the pre-selection process and will be presenting a special prize in his name to a finalist of his choosing.
Added to this and to financial awards for those who score the highest, a number of organisations have offered engagements and we believe that this competition can genuinely provide a useful step in career development.
We do hope, though, that this will be more than just a competition: that it will be a festival of talent, one where all participants can compare their own judgements to those of the jury and celebrate their own and others’ success as well as developing friendships and professional connections.Details & repertoire