The Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition & Festival is one of Australia’s richest and most prestigious programs for young pianists.
The Competition offers twenty of Australia & New Zealand’s finest pianists aged 16 to 30 the chance to compete for the top honour, international recognition, concert engagements and over $60,000 in cash and prizes, culminating in a dazzling final concert with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra.
Running in conjunction with the Competition, the Festival offers a wide range of events for students, teachers, and lovers of piano, with masterclasses, workshops, recitals by visiting international artists and a program for high school students.
The competition was established in 1999 to honour the memory of the late Professor Lev Vlassenko, the world-renowned international concert pianist and teacher. Lev had a close affiliation with Australia, acting as jury member of the Sydney International Piano Competition and International Professor Consultant to the Queensland and Sydney Conservatoriums. He spent the last two years of his life teaching piano at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University, where he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate. His daughter Natasha Vlassenko and her partner Oleg Stepanov are the event’s artistic directors.
Lev firmly believed in the great potential of the Australian piano school, but stressed the need for an opportunity for emerging artists to gain the experience necessary for competition at international level. The Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition is the only major piano event in Australia that mirrors the requirements of an international competition, such as a demanding repertoire, national and international jury members, all rounds open to the public, and the final round’s concertos performed with a major symphony orchestra (the Queensland Symphony Orchestra). Apart from preparing young artists for an extremely demanding professional career, the Competition provides publicity and performance opportunities for the winners, in addition to considerable cash and performance prizes.