2019 Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition prizewinner offers online concert

Hastings International Piano, the charity responsible for the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition and the Hastings International Piano Festival, has launched an online concert series to support the careers of their prizewinners in this time of national crisis.

Wednesday, 20th May 2020, 5:28 pm
Yuanfan Yang

The Evening In With...concert series continues with the 2019 Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition prizewinner Yuanfan Yang on Friday 22nd May at 7pm.

His programme will be Chopin – Barcarolle in F sharp Op.60; Yang – Ode to the Atlantic; and Rachmaninoff – Prelude in D flat Op.32 no 13.

Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition Prizewinner 2019 Yuanfan Yang has performed and toured in many countries throughout Europe, Asia and the USA. He has also won numerous piano competitions, including 1st Prize in the Roma International Piano Competition in 2018. Prior to this, he had won 1st Prize at the Cleveland International Young Artists Piano Competition in 2015 and 1st Prize of the 4th International Franz Liszt Piano Competition in Weimar in 2014. He was the Keyboard Winner and a Grand Finalist of BBC Young Musician of the Year 2012.

Yuanfan is also a versatile composer and an accomplished improviser. His composition ‘Waves’ won the Overall Award in the EPTA UK Composition Competition 2011, and his ‘Haunted Bell’ won first prize in the Golden Key International Composition Competition in 2012. In August 2019, Yuanfan toured his own Piano Concerto No. 1 ‘The Wilderness’ in China as the soloist with the China National Orchestra of Theatre & Dance, and in September 2019, Yuanfan’s new Piano Concerto No. 2 ‘The Peony Pavilion’ was premiered with the Hornton Symphony Orchestra in London.

Yuanfan’s debut album Watercolour was released in September 2017 by Orchid Classics to critical acclaim, including 4* from International Piano Magazine.

The short recitals premier every Friday evening on Facebook at 7pm GMT+1 and at http://Hastingsinternationalpiano.org

In these times when the livelihood of our musicians is at risk, with engagements being cancelled and studies on hold, this series aims to provide an income to the young competition prizewinners as well as offering Hastings Piano supporters and the wider public something to look forward to at the end of the week.

The series launched on Friday 20th March with 2018 Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition Winner Roman Kosyakov giving a concert from his Birmingham Conservatoire, and continues every Friday evening. The concerts are free to view, but viewers are able to make a voluntary donation to Hastings International Piano Engagement Fund, or choose to join as a Friend whilst watching. These donations help to continue the organisations work supporting young pianists as well as engagement projects offered to the young people of Hastings and the surrounding area. This includes free tickets to events as well as workshops, school visits and inspirational talks from visiting artists.

The Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition is an internationally-renowned competition for young concert pianists from around the world, attracting 170 applicants in 2019 across global auditions, 40 of which came to compete in Hastings. Their prize: the opportunity to perform with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra on our two-night final and to win a first prize of £15,000. The Competition returns in February 2021.

The inaugural Hastings International Piano Festival took place in February/March 2020 as the Concerto Competition moved to every other year. The Festival was a spectacular 2-week celebration of the piano involving 168 international artists including Rufus Wainwright, Guy Chambers, Reuben James, Claire Martin OBE, Rachel Portman OBE, Mark Kermode, Martin James Bartlett, The Puppini Sisters, The Dodge Brothers, The Swedish Trio, Liane Carroll, Neil Brand, The Pasadena Roof Orchestra and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, who all performed at multiple venues across the creative hub of Hastings on England’s south coast.

A major success of the inaugural festival was the growth in young audiences across the region enabled to experience the festival, with the under-21 ticket scheme devised to provide free tickets for performances and a hugely popular free interactive piano concert for younger children. The music education programme provided over 1000 children with an opportunity to attend youth workshops, performances and master-classes, provided by many of the headline artists.

Curator and Managing Director of Hastings International Piano Ian Roberts says – “It is so important to help and support young exceptional talent who are forging ahead with their careers. The current situation musicians find themselves in has denied them the opportunity to perform all over the world with ensembles, orchestras and as solo artists. Our on-line concert series is our own way of providing a regular performance opportunity and continuing to support our past and current competition winners in their future development and endeavours. “