the chopin competition

Martha Argerich playing a Chopin mazurka in the 1965 Chopin Competition, the year she won.

The preliminaries for the 17th International Chopin Competition in Warsaw are currently underway. Held every five years, this competition has jump-started the careers of superstar pianists like Maurizio Pollini, Martha Argerich, Garrick Ohlsson, and Krystian Zimerman. It is also infamous for a kerfuffle among the jury in 1980, when Martha Argerich resigned from the jury to protest the elimination of highly provocative and controversial young pianist Ivo Pogorelić.

You can access live streams of the preliminaries on the Chopin Competition’s Youtube channel, as well as recordings of previous days’ competitors. Every day, competitors play from 10:00am till 8:00 or 9:00pm Warsaw time (except Sunday, which starts at 5:00pm Warsaw time). For those of us on the other side of the Atlantic, that’s 1:00am till 11:00am or 12:00pm Pacific Standard Time.

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