Music

Hear tomorrow's stars today

Who are the best oboists, violinists, guitarists and pianists of the future? No need to wait; this hour we have the latest prize winners from one of the classical music world's most renowned music competitions.

Listen to audio 54:59

Concert Hour: ARD Music Competition, part two

In its 66 year history, the ARD International Music Competition in Munich has launched the careers of music mega-stars Jessye Norman, Mitsuko Uchida, Christian Tetzlaff, Heinz Holliger, Thomas Quasthoff, Yuri Bashmet and others. 

A required piece for oboists in the competition was the concerto that Richard Strauss wrote in Germany in late 1945. Oboist Juliana Koch describes it as a piece with an emotional impact: "Munich was in ruins and Strauss was wallowing in harmonies. For me, the piece is about Strauss at the end of his life looking back. It's like a novel."

Oboist Juliana Koch (ARD Music Competition/Daniel Delang)

Oboist Juliana Koch

A true highlight of the final concerts from the competition was a performance of Mozart's Piano concerto No. 12 by Japanese pianist Wataru Hisasue. His treatment of that composer was described as light and elegant. His response: "I'm not always aiming for an elegant kind of sound. With Mozart's concerto I can use my own colors, my own sound and enjoy it."

Pianist Wataru Hisasue (ARD Music Competition/Daniel Delang)

Pianist Wataru Hisasue

Only one first prize was awarded at the most recent edition of the ARD Music Competition, and it went to South Korean pianist JeungBeum Sohn, who impressed the jury and the audience as a hands-on, dramatic performer.

Filipino pianist and jury member Cecile Licad said, "He was so focused from the first second. And after the last piece, when he played the Tchaikovsky, he smiled, as though to say, 'The work is done.' It was very moving for me because performing here is all about the focus and the work you put into it."

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Piano concerto No. 12 in A Major, K. 414, 1st movement 

performed by:
Wataru Hisasue, piano
Munich Chamber Orchestra 
Recorded by Radio Bavaria, Munich (BR) in the Prince Regent Theater, Munich on September 14, 2017 

Richard Strauss 
Concerto in D Major for oboe and small orchestra, AV 144 (excerpt) 

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Piano concerto in B-flat Minor, op. 23, No. 1, 1st movement 

performed by:
Juliana Koch, oboe
JeungBeum Sohn, piano
Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra 
Michael Francis, conductor
Recorded by Radio Bavaria, Munich (BR) in the Munich Philharmonie on September 15, 2017  

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