for the 11th UNISA International Piano Competition announced
Back: Szczepan Konczal, Ben Schoeman, and Chun Wang Front: Alexey
Yemtsov, Pallavi Mahidhara and Martina Filjak
Saturday evening 2 February 2008, after the final session of the
third round, the six finalists of the 11th UNISA International Piano
Competition 2008 were announced. Szczepan Konczal (Poland), Ben
Schoeman (South Africa), and Chun Wang (People’s Republic
of China), Alexey Yemtsov (Australia), Pallavi Mahidhara (USA) and
Martina Filjak (Croatia) are the six finalists. Arjan Tien, from
the Netherlands, will be conducting the Chamber Orchestra of South
Africa during the final round of the competition.
is playing two piano concertos with the orchestra during this popular
event. Here is a short background on the 6 finalists:-
Filjak is from Croatia and one of the older finalists. She has trained
in the Zagreb Music Academy, the Hochschule Karlsruhe (2000-2004)
and from 2004 till presently, she trains at the Hochschule Hannover.
She has topped
most the competitions that she has entered and received most of
her prizes during last year, 1st prize for 58 Concorso Internazionale
di Musica Gian Battista Viotti Pianoforte, Vercelli and 1st prize:
Ibla Grand prize and 3 other major prizes.
is from Poland has been training at the Academy of Music in Katowice
from 2004 – 2008. He has been winning prizes since 2003 and
his recent achievement was in 2006 where he was the finalist in
the Tallinn International Piano Competition.
Mahidhara, the only
finalist from the US has trained at the Curtis School of Music, Levine
School of Music and the Music Institute of Chicago. She has been winning
awards from a very tender age and her most recent accolade was in 2006
– second prize at the Piano Arts National Competition.
Schoeman, our homegrown
talent, has trained at the University of Pretoria and is currently training
at the Accademia Pianistica ‘Incontri col Maestro’ in Italy.
His recent win was in 2005, first prize at the SAMRO Overseas Scholarship.
Wang is from the People’s
Republic of China and is the youngest finalist. He has trained at the
Music School attached to the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing.
His recent achievement was in 2006, first prize at the Villa Lobos International
He is the only Australian
finalist and has trained at the Australian Institute of Music and the
Sydney Conservatorium. His recent award was in 2004 where he claimed third
prize at the Pozzoli International Competition.
Jury members of the competition - Back: Mr Japie Saayman (Non-voting
Jean-Paul Sevilla (France), William Chapman Nyaho (Ghana/USA)
Sergio Perticaroli (Italy), John Roos (UNISA)
Front: Dianne Coutts (South Africa), Huiqiao BAO (PR of China),
Dame Fanny Waterman (UK), Manana Doidjashvili (Georgia)