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Cliburn postpones international competition to 2022

🕐 2 min read

The Cliburn announced Sept. 22 that the 16th edition of its flagship Van Cliburn International Piano Competition will now be held June 2-18, 2022, at Bass Performance Hall and Van Cliburn Concert Hall at TCU, in Fort Worth. The Competition was previously scheduled May 27-June 12, 2021.

The delay is the first in the almost 60-year history of The Cliburn Competition , widely considered one of the world’s preeminent international music contests.

The organization said the delay is because of implications of the global pandemic, including social distancing, international travel, winners’ touring, and planning uncertainty.

“The Cliburn Competition is a once-every-four-years opportunity for us to showcase exceptional artists to the world, to bring the international classical music community together in Fort Worth, to create a singular event for our hometown, and, in the end, to launch careers,” Jacques Marquis, Cliburn president and CEO, said in the announcement.

“It’s become clear in recent months that the continuing effects of the pandemic will prevent us from producing an event at the level and with the impact that our patrons, our supporters, and  – most importantly – our competitors deserve,” he said.

With the delay decision now made, The Cliburn can plan a competition “that will achieve new heights and be a fitting celebration of international strength and unity after such challenging times,” he said.

In the postponement to one year later, the venues, format, jury and other key elements are expected to remain unchanged. Importantly, an additional year of eligibility will be added for competitors. For this edition only, applicants may be 18 to 31 years of age (born after June 12, 1990, and on or before June 2, 2004).

The Cliburn’s competition cycle will change, for this period only, to:

– June 2-18, 2022: Van Cliburn International Piano Competition

– Fall 2022: Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition

– June 2023: Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition and Festival

Details for the Amateur and Junior Competitions to be announced as venue and other confirmations are made, the organization said in a news release.

2022 Cliburn competition important dates:

– Oct. 14, 2021: Application submission deadline

– March 6-12, 2022: Screening Auditions.

These will be held for the first time in Fort Worth. Seventy-two applicants will be chosen to perform a 25-minute recital in front of a live audience and the Screening Jury. From those, 30 will be selected to return to Fort Worth in June to compete.

– March 30, 2022: Announcement of competitors

–  June 2, 2022: Competition begins

– June 18, 2022: Awards ceremony

The Cliburn said that no action is necessary for patrons who have already purchased tickets for the 2021 Cliburn Competition; the purchase will automatically transfer to the postponed dates. Premium subscriptions remain on sale and are available at

Other subscription packages and individual tickets will go on sale in 2021.

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