The search for budding concert soloists returns


Launch of 2003 National Piano & Violin Competition


The competition that has spotted up-and-coming classical musical talents, such as Keegan Kang, Tang Tee Koon and Grace Lee, is back this year. The biggest classical music competition in Singapore, the biennial National Piano and Violin Competition organised by the National Arts Council is dedicated to developing the performing skills of musicians in Singapore and raising their musical standards.


The last competition saw a total of 173 participants and the National Arts Council hopes to attract as many, if not more, participants this time. The competition maintains its rigorous standards. In line with international practices, participants in the Open category will have to perform a concerto component, introduced in the last competition. In the final rounds of the competition, Open categoryfinalists will have the opportunity to perform a full-length concerto with The Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra conducted by its music director, Maestro Lim Yau.


"We hope the competition will provide the impetus for aspiring talents to showcase their talents and reach greater musical heights. The rare opportunity to perform a concerto with an orchestra in the Open category finals not only raises the level of difficulty in the competition, but will also equip participants with the invaluable experience of working with an orchestra on a major full-length work. Such exposure will stand them in good stead to meet similar challenges in music competitions overseas," says Stacey Tan, Director (Artist Development).


Participants will be required to cover works from at least three stylistic periods from Baroque,


Classical, Romantic or 20th Century. The Competition is open to Singapore citizens and permanent residents (PRs) only. Those currently studying abroad are also eligible to take part. Travel subsidies are also available to finalists in the Open and Senior categories who are currently studying or residing abroad.


The top three winners of each age category will receive trophies, certificates and the following cash prizes:

Open    Senior   
 1st Prize  $5,000  1st Prize  $2,500
 2nd Prize  $3,500  2nd Prize  $1,000
 3rd Prize  $2,000  3rd Prize  $800


 Intermediate    Junior  
 1st Prize  $1,000  1st Prize  $800
 2nd Prize  $800  2nd Prize  $400
 3rd Prize  $400  3rd Prize  $200


In addition, participants who do not win the top three prizes, but have shown promise in their performances, may receive Honourable Mention awards of $100 each.


A panel of 6 adjudicators will be invited to judge the Competition. The names of the adjudicators will be posted on the NAC website ( at a later date. The adjudicators will also conduct piano and violin masterclasses in conjunction with the Competition on 19 December 2003 at the NAFA Recital Hall and YMS Arts Centre. Selected participants of the Competition will be invited to perform during the masterclasses. More details will be available later.


In addition, all first prize winners of the Competition will perform in the Prize Winners’ Concert on 18 December 2003 at the Victoria Concert Hall, on the evening of the prize presentation, providing an almost immediate platform for winners to showcase their talents. First prize winners of the Open category will perform with The Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra. Tickets to the Concert will be available to the public from the National Arts Council at a later date.


Registration booklets are available from NAC’s office, website ( and at the following venues: Victoria Theatre, Victoria Concert Hall, Alliance Francaise, YMS Arts Centre, Kallang Theatre.


All registration forms must reach the NAC by 30 August 2003, 1pm. The public may contact Ms Lina Yong (DID: 6837 9522, Email: or Ms Bernice Wong (DID: 6837 9519, Email: for more information on the competition.