Postgraduate Panfilov Wins International Piano Competition

RNCM pianist Alexander Panfilov has won the 2014 James Mottram International Piano Competition (JMIPC), concluding what had been an exceptional and highly competitive week at the College.

Alexander, who was born in Moscow and is currently studying for a Postgraduate Diploma in Solo Performance, performed Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto (Emperor) to secure the £10,000 First Prize, which also incorporated a two-year contract with Margaret Murphy Management.

Alexander Panfilov

The £5000 Second Prize was awarded to Sicilian pianist Giuseppe Guarrera, who performed Chopin’s First Piano Concerto, while British pianist Kausikan Rajeshkumar secured the £2500 Third Prize with a performance of Chopin’s Second.

All finalists were accompanied by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Vasily Petrenko, and the competition again had the support of media partner Classic FM, which recorded the Final ready for broadcast on the Full Works Concert programme on Tuesday 6 January.

Alexander said: ‘I am very happy to have won First Prize in this competition. It was doubly special for me because it took place at the RNCM, which feels like home for me now. I had great support from friends and family throughout the week, and I really enjoyed playing with the RLPO and Vasily Petrenko.’

Graham Scott, JMIPC Artistic Director and Head of the School of Keyboard Studies at the RNCM, added: ‘This year’s JMIPC drew more than 60 applications from around the world of which 30 were selected for the live rounds in Manchester. After a preliminary round and a semi-final three supremely gifted pianists were selected for the concerto final with the RLPO. The jury was unanimous in awarding the First Prize to Alexander Panfilov for his monumental performance of Beethoven Emperor concerto.’

The James Mottram International Piano Competition is a major biennial event that offers an all-round learning experience for young pianists from all over the world, mixing opportunities to perform on the concert platform with a series of masterclasses given by a distinguished international jury.

It is thanks to a generous bequest from the late James Mottram that the RNCM is able to present the competition which, in accordance with his wishes, has a particular focus on the works of Scarlatti, Chopin and Debussy.

2 December 2014