La Scena Musicale

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

The XVIII Paloma O'Shea Santander International Piano Competition is Entering the Semi-Final Stage on Wednesday, 29 July

The Jury revealed the list of 12 pianists who will participate in the Semi-final from 29 July to 1 August inclusive in the Palace of Festivals of Cantabria

Santander, 28 July 2015. The first stage of the XVIII Paloma O’Shea Santander International Piano Competition concluded yesterday, Monday 27 July, having been sponsored by El Diario Montañés.
At midnight, the Jury led by pianist and professor Gary Graffman and composed of prominent international figures such as Jian LiTomás Marco, Luis Pereira Leal, Michel Béroff, Péter Csaba, Christopher Elton, Homero Francesch, Márta Gulyás, Klaus Hellwig, Eldar Nebolsin and Blanca Uribe, revealed the list of twelve participants who will continue to compete for the awards in the Semi-final.

First name and Surname - Country - Age

Sr. D. Juan Barahona - Spain - 25
Sr. D. Albert Cano Smit - Spain / Netherlands - 18
Mr. David Jae-Weon Huh - Korea - 28
Mr. Jianing Kong - People’s Republic of China - 29
Ms. Ke Ma - People’s Republic of China - 20
Ms. Alexia Mouza - Greece / Venezuela - 25
Mr. Jinhyung Park - Korea - 18
Sr. D. Juan Pérez Floristán - Spain - 22
Mr. Kazuya Saito - Japan - 25
Mr. Akihiro Sakiya - Japan - 26
Mr. Alexey Sychev - Russia - 26
Mr. Andrey Yaroshinsky - Russia - 29

From 29 July to 1 August inclusive these 12 selected participants will offer another solo recital and will also undergo a chamber music exam where they will be performing alongside the Cuarteto Casals in the concerts that integrate the Semi-final, which are sponsored by Grupo Tirso, Textile Santanderina, Café Dromedary and Hoteles Santos.

The Final, which will take place on 3 and 4 August, features the six finalists performing complete concertos with a full orchestra. These performances will be part of the 64th Santander International Festival, The Radio Televisión Española Symphony Orchestra will accompany the pianists under the baton of maestro Pablo González. These concerts will be sponsored by Viesgo and Fundación Banco Santander.

All phases of the Competition will be broadcast live on and The Final will also be broadcast live in the Classic Radio of National Radio of Spain and in the Chanel 2 of Spanish National Television. Likewise, the Awards Ceremony will be broadcast live by Chanel 2 of TVE.

The Santander Competition boasts substantial cash prizes totaling approximately 90,000 Euros. This includes First, Second and Third Prizes, the “Santander Grand Prix”, honorary prizes and diplomas. But perhaps most importantly, the Competition provides the winner and the finalists with the opportunity to perform in various key music venues throughout the world, which is a true kickstart to their music careers.

Canon provides the Audience Prize, which was given for the first time in 1998. It will be awarded on the basis of the voting cast by the public attending the concert in the Sala Argenta of the Palace of Festivals of Cantabria and also by the listeners of Classic Radio of RNE and spectators of Channel 2 of TVE, and The spectators will have the opportunity to choose the winner after each of the two concerts that integrate the Final of the Competition, on 3 and 4 August. In these cases the voting will be cast online on the sites and

The Piano Competition benefits from the collaboration of numerous public and private entities: Department of Education, Culture and Sport - INAEM; Government of Cantabria; Santander City Council; International Festival of Santander; Fundación Albéniz; Fundación Botín; University of Cantabria; Publishing House Cantabria, El Diario Montañés; Viesgo; Fundación Banco Santander; Café Dromedario, S.A.; Canon; Managerial Group SADISA, S.L.; Grupo Planeta; Grupo Tirso S.A.; Yamaha España; Hinves Pianos; Steinway and Sons, Hamburg; Hoteles Santos; Joyería Galán; Joyería Presmanes; Textil Santanderina, S.A.; Agua de Solares; Iberia; Alsa; Renfe; Volvo.

Semi-final (12 pianists)
Recital and Chamber music
Casals Quartet
29 July - 1 August
16:00 h - 22:30 h  (14:00h UTC – 20:30h UTC)
Pereda Hall, free entry up to the maximum capacity of the hall

The Final (6 pianists)
Symphonic Orchestra of Radiotelevisión Española
Pablo González, conductor
on 3 and 4 August
19:00 h (17:00 UTC)
Argent Hall, tickets on sale at the ticket windows of the Palace of Festivals of Cantabria, by telephone +34 902 22 34 34 and by e-mail

The Closing  and Awards Ceremony
on 5 August
19:00 h (17:00 UTC)
Argenta Hall, free entry passes must be collected at the box office beforehand. Limited seating capacity.

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