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Dallas International Piano Competition 2024: Shigeru Kawai SK-EX Chosen as Official Piano for Prestigious Competition

© Mitch Lazorko

The Dallas International Piano Competition 2024 took place in Dallas, Texas, USA, from 13th to 18th June, with the selection of the Shigeru Kawai SK-EX full concert grand piano as the official instrument for the event.

Kawai debuted at the Dallas International Piano Competition, marking its first participation in a city where it operates a Kawai store.

Kawai’s esteemed piano technician, MPA (Master Piano Artisan) Nick Ichikawa, also played a pivotal role at the Dallas International Piano Competition. Despite the city’s high temperatures and daily humidity exceeding 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius), Nick Ichikawa meticulously adjusted the piano to harmonise with the hall’s acoustics, showcasing exceptional skill in managing subtle instrument nuances under challenging environmental conditions.

Dallas International Piano Competition 2024: Final Results

1st Prize and Audience Choice AwardAdam JacksonU.K.
2nd PrizeYi-Chen FengTaiwan
3rd PrizeSeho YoungUSA

Comments from prize winners

■ Adam Jackson

© Mitch Lazorko

– What are your impressions of performing a piano concerto in the final round?

I really enjoyed performing a concerto in the final round. I had wanted to perform Chopin’s 2nd Concerto with an orchestra for a while, so being given the opportunity to do so in the final round felt like a victory even before the results were announced!

– How do you feel about playing a Shigeru Kawai piano throughout the competition?

Walking into the hall to try the competition piano can be a daunting experience because you never know what to expect.

I cannot express just how grateful I was to be playing on the Shigeru Kawai pianos we had at the competition, both on stage and in the rehearsal rooms. I’ve never had a more consistent and excellent experience with pianos! Everything, from the touch to the sound, allowed me to fully engage in and convey what I had been imagining in my mind.

■ Yi-Chen Feng

© Mitch Lazorko

– What are your impressions of performing a piano concerto in the final round?

It’s always such a pleasure to play concertos with a professional orchestras in competitions. Despite the lack of rehearsal time, it’s such a delightful challenge to see how quickly the musicians of the orchestra and myself can adapt and adjust to our own unique interpretations. The short rehearsal time is always stressful but it is also a very rewarding experience. I’m always learning new ways to rehearse effectively and efficiently with a new ensemble.

– How do you feel about playing a Shigeru Kawai piano throughout the competition?

This was the first time that I’ve played on a Shigeru Kawai piano and I fell in love with it immediately! I was surprised at how quick and responsive the instrument felt. It is very sensitive to the touch and responds with a large variety of colour from different strokes.

■ Seho Young

© Mitch Lazorko

– What are your impressions of performing a piano concerto in the final round?

I had an amazing time collaborating with DCS on the Schumann, to be able to play it in such a great auditorium with a good crowd was a privilege.

– How do you feel about playing a Shigeru Kawai piano throughout the competition?

I really enjoyed playing on the Shigeru Kawai: touch was solid but not too heavy, and the tone was warm.

© Mitch Lazorko
(From left) Seho Young, Adam Jackson and Yi-Chen Feng

About the Dallas International Piano Competition

The prestigious Dallas International Piano Competition, hosted by the Dallas Chamber Symphony, was first held in 2013. The Competition is comprised of two separate, but concurrently running parts; 1) an international “Pro” competition for classically trained performers aged 18 to 35 (inclusive) who are ready to launch a solo career, and 2) a “Youth” festival of performances and masterclasses for those aged 15 to 18 (inclusive) and residing in Texas, who have reached an advanced level of performance on their instrument. Presented by the Dallas Chamber Symphony, the DIPC is held biennially in June.

Official website: https://dallasipc.org/

About the Shigeru Kawai SK-EX full concert grand piano

Unveiled in 2001 as the flagship instrument of the Shigeru Kawai line, the SK-EX concert grand piano is hand-crafted in limited numbers following a unique ‘prototyping’ creation process. In order to achieve the supreme range of expression required in a concert piano, each instrument utilizes a variety of carefully selected materials, with premium aged spruce soundboards. Shigeru Kawai instruments adopt the advanced Millennium III keyboard action, featuring extended wooden keys and advanced ABS Carbon action parts, providing superior speed and responsiveness than conventional wooden action parts, allowing pianists to express a greater range of feeling and emotion in their performance.

Click here to find your nearest Kawai retailer and start your own musical journey today.

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