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13 Young Cellists Qualified for the Second Round of the Cello Section in 2020 Enescu Competition

Thirteen young cellists from 10 countries, out of the 54 competitors who participated in the First Round, received the most votes from the Jury and advanced to the Second Round of the Cello Section in the 2020 George Enescu International Competition: Margarita Balanas (Latvia), Ștefan Cazacu (Romania), Amedeo Cicchese (Italy), Sebastian Fritsch (Germany), Jérémy Garbarg (France), Anouchka Hack (Germany), Sandra Lied Haga (Norway), Jaemin Han (South Korea), Woochan Jeong (South Korea), Christine J.  Lee (South Korea), Keisuke Morita (Japan), Ivan Skanavi (Russia), and Grace Sohn (Canada).

The First Round of the 2020 George Enescu International Competition’s Cello Section was held online between August 30 and September 3. The results were announced online by the President of the Jury in a video posted on the Competition’s website on Friday, September 4. The international jury of the 2020 Enescu Cello Competition is led by Prof. David Geringas and comprised of Myung-Wha Chung, Leonid Gorokhov, Alexandra Guțu, Frans Helmerson, Arto Noras, Jérôme Pernoo, Meehae Ryo, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, and Raphael Wallfisch.

In the announcement published on the Competition’s website, David Geringas, President of the Cello Jury, gave participants the nod: ”First I would like to thank all talented young cellists who took the courage to participate in the First Round of the 2020 George Enescu International Cello Competition and, of course, my wonderful colleagues from the Jury. I know that it was sometimes quite difficult to find facilities for recording these programs in such a short summertime. The more, I was personally really impressed by how high was the artistic and technical level of your recordings. That made the work of our fantastic Jury very interesting while also not easy.”

The Second Round (eliminatory) of the Enescu Cello Competition will run between September 5 and 7. The recordings will be available for the general public on the Competition’s website starting on September 5, 7:00 AM GMT |10:00 AM EEST (Romania). The results of the Second Round will be announced by the President of the Jury on the Competition’s website on September 8, 2020, at 5:00 PM GMT | 8:00 PM EEST (Romania).

The competitors who qualify in the Second Round will participate in the Semifinal of the Competition, which will take place on May 13, 2021, at the Romanian Athenaeum, in Bucharest. The Cello Final will take place on Saturday, May 15, 2021, at 3:00 PM GMT | 6:00 PM EEST (Romania), with the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by maestro Nicolas Altstaedt.

It is for the first time in the history of the Enescu Competition when the first two rounds of the instruments sections are held online. To create a bond between musicians and spectators, the platform provides three buttons through which viewers can virtually applaud, choosing the intensity and form of their praise. Spectators can also send messages to young musicians to encourage them. The public’s reaction to these mini-recitals will be communicated to both competitors and juries and will be also made public. Music lovers can share their favorite videos on their own social media channels.

For each of the first two rounds of the Competition, the competitors sent to the Organizing Committee video recordings of their performances according to the initially chosen repertoire, and the jury members analyze them from home. All the recordings sent by competitors are published for the general public on the Enescu Competition’s website

Access to the 2020 Enescu Competition online content during this period is free. The full program is at this link:

The 2020 George Enescu International Competition, scheduled to take place between August 29 and September 20, was reorganized in a new format with two distinct phases. The first two Rounds of the Competition will be held online in September according to the initial calendar, whereas the Semifinals and Finals of all sections are rescheduled for May 2021, at the Romanian Athenaeum in Bucharest. The general public access to the Opening Gala and the first two Rounds is exclusively online and free, while spectators who have purchased tickets and season subscriptions will receive their money back.

The message of this year’s edition is Beauty in Life, and the 2020 George Enescu International Competition inspires and challenges us to prove that we all have the power to reinvent ourselves and to find the strength to go through the pandemic while embracing beauty in our life.

The video clip of the campaign is at this link:

George Enescu Competition is an international platform for launching the future world-class musicians and for promoting the compositions of the great Romanian composer to the new generation of artists. It is thus a natural extension of the George Enescu Festival, the most important cultural event organized in Romania. The Competition has four sections – violin, cello, piano, and composition – and it ranks in the top five classical music competitions worldwide.