Pianist Sergio Tiempo
Sergio Tiempo

Retuning a piano contest

The Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition has been updated to reflect COVID and achieve greater relevance

According to the maverick Glenn Gould, piano competitions leave their “eager, ill-advised supplicants forever stunted, victims of a spiritual lobotomy”. Strong words, no doubt alluding to the perennial criticism that music competitions encourage conformity, conservative interpretation and safe performance.

It’s also suggested that competitors feel pressured to travel the keys at lightning speed or shape their performances to appeal to a judge’s style. But are these charges still applicable?

Argentinian pianist Sergio Tiempo, who joins Barry Douglas (Chair) and Irina Plotnikova on the Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition Finals...