Five New Works Slated for Van Cliburn Comp. Semifinals

This year’s 35 hopeful competitors in the 12th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition have each selected one new work by an American composer to include in their semifinal round program. As part of the competition’s American Composers Invitational, each entrant chose from among five scores without knowing the work’s author. The revealed list of scores includes work by:

  • Sebastian Currier, New York, NY: Scarlatti Cadences and Brainstorm, completed 1997
  • Jennifer Higdon, Philadelphia, PA: Secret and Glass Gardens, composed 2000
  • Daniel Kellogg, New Haven, CT: Scarlet Thread, 2004
  • Jan Krzywicki, Philadelphia, PA: Nocturnals, 2001
  • Ruth Schonthal, Scarsdale, NY: Sonata quasi un’improvvisazione, 1964

  • Composers who have written for the competition in the past include:
    • Samuel Barber
    • Leonard Bernstein
    • William Bolcom
    • Aaron Copland
    • John Corigliano
    • Norman Dello Joio
    • Morton Gould
    • Lee Hoiby
    • William Schuman
    • Willard Straight

    Each composer who has a work played by one of the twelve advancing semifinalists will receive a cash prize of $2500, and the composer of the piece that is performed by the largest number of semifinalists will receive the Grand Prize of $5000.

    This year’s jury for the American Composers Invitational consisted of Lowell Liebermann (winner of the Foundation’s first American Composers Invitational), composer Robert Maggio, and Michael Boriskin, artistic director of Copland House. Under the guidance of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Corigliano, and assisted by pianist Stephen Gosling, the jury reviewed twenty-nine scores, all with composers names withheld.