A pandemic couldn’t stop the second annual Weatherford College International Piano Competition. In the ultimate form of social distancing, this year’s event was moved online and performances from 21 finalists are now available on the WC YouTube channel.
“Music has always played a great part in every time of crisis,” said Duane Durrett, WC dean of fine arts. “Music reminds us in hard times that there is beauty in our world, no matter what forces are trying to take the beauty in the world away. Music brings hope.”
76 contestants submitted video entries to the competition in February and 21 finalists were selected—9 in the junior division (age 11-17) and 12 in the young artist division (age 18 and over).
These 21 finalists are being judged by six of the world’s top piano instructors: Dr. Peter Takács, Oberlin Conservatory; Dr. Jose Ramon Mendez, Northwestern University; Dr. Jason Kwak, Texas State University; Spencer Myer, Longy School of Music; Dr. Andrew Staupe, University of Houston; and Dr. Éva Polgár, Azusa Pacific University. Dr. Hyeyoung Song, master pianist at WC, is directing the competition.
"Online Competition is a new adventure for all of us,” Song said. “We are grateful that WC could keep supporting our young artists during quarantine time and we are so proud of all our contestants. I thank all the contestants for your hard work, dedication and courage to share your music regardless of difficulties and challenges to make this special celebration of music possible. "
First, second and third prize winners from each division will be announced on Saturday, April 25. Find the performances in the WC International Piano Competition 2020 playlist on the WC YouTube channel, youtube.com/user/WeatherfordCollege.