Honens International Piano Competition: 2022 finalists named

Canada’s prestigious Honens International Piano Competition has announced the three pianists who have been selected for its 2022 final.

Following five intense days of semi-finals, pianists Rachel Breen (age 26, from the United States), Sasha Kasman Laude (27, also US) and Illia Ovcharenko (21, Ukraine) will now compete for the title of 2022 Honens Prize Laureate. The prize package, featuring $100,000 Canadian dollars (CAD) in prize money plus an artist development programme valued at $500,000 CAD, is among the largest for a competition of this type.

The three finalists were selected by the competition jury, which features some world-renowned pianists. These include Michel Béroff (our choice for a best Prokofiev piano concertos set), Stewart Goodyear and recent BBC Music Magazine interviewee Imogen Cooper. Other jury members includeEarl Blackburn, Katherine Chi, Ick-Choo Moon and Orli Shaham.

The final rounds of the 2022 competition take place on Thursday, October 27 and Friday, October 28. On the first night of finals, the three finalists will each perform a chamber music recital. This will include a Mozart work with The Viano String Quartet and Sam Loeck (bass), plus a selection of Schubert lieder with mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó.

On the second night of finals, each finalist will perform a concerto with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and guest conductor Jeffrey Kahane.

Both final rounds will stream live at honens.com/livestream-2022. You can find further details at honens.com.

Endowed by philanthropist Esther Honens in 1991, the Honens International Piano Competition takes place every three years and is considered one of the world’s most prestigious events of its kind. Competition winners are prepared for the rigours of professional careers in music, while the annual Honens Festival is one of Canada’s premier classical music events.