2020 Concerto-Aria Competition


Amanda Hargreaves, voice
S. Barber, Knoxville: Summer of 1915, Op.24

Amelia Wawrzon, voice 
A 'Charles Gounod' set, inspired by Dame Nellie Melba:
1. The Jewel Song - "Oh Dieu!... Je ris de me voir si belle" from Faust
2. The Poison Aria - "Dieu! Quel frisson... Amour, ranime mon courage" from Roméo et Juliette
3. Juliette's Waltz - "Ah! Je Veux Vivre" from Roméo et Juliette
4. Elvira's 'Mad Scene' - "O rendetemi la speme... Qui la voce sua soave... Vien, diletto" from I Puritani (Bellini)

Brian Luo, piano
S. Rachmaninov, Piano Concerto No.3

Caleb Wong, cello
A. Dvorak, Cello Concerto

Raymond Shon, piano
B. Bartok, Piano Concerto No.3

Timothy Kan, piano
S. Rachmaninov, Piano Concerto No.1

Vincent Wang, cello
E. Lalo, Cello Concerto

Joel Walmsley, trumpet
J. Haydn, Trumpet Concerto

Natalia Edwards, horn
K. Turner, Horn Concerto, Op.64 (Movements 1, 2 and 4)

Elijah Cornish, bass trombone
D. Schnyder, subZERO, Concerto for Bass Trombone

Jackie Wong, violin
E. Korngold, Violin Concerto, Op.35

Jaeyoung Kim, flute
J. Ibert, Flute Concerto

Kathryn Ramsay, flute
E. Rautavaara, Dances with the Winds, Flute Concerto

Joel Cassidy, saxophone
D. Maslanka, Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Wind Ensemble (Movements 2, 3, and 5)

Yiang Shan, percussion
A. Masson, Concertpiece

Zixiao Wei, guitar
H. Villa-Lobos, Concerto for Guitar

Jes Broeren, clarinet
A. Copland, Clarinet Concerto

Samantha Hargreaves, voice
1. ‘Giunse al fin il momento . . . Deh vieni, non tardar’ from Le nozze di Figaro (Mozart)
2. ‘Ch’io mi scordi di te? . . . Non temer, amato bene,’ K. 505 (Mozart)

Near the end of each academic year, students across the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music are invited to compete for the opportunity to perform in the following year as a soloist with the University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, the University of Melbourne Wind Symphony, or one of the other Conservatorium ensembles. Preparing for the 2020 Melbourne Conservatorium of Music Concerto-Aria Competition has been very challenging for all of us during the recent extended months of lockdown. Nonetheless, students and teachers in the Conservatorium have shown enormous resilience and determination in their effort to continue their pursuit of musical excellence despite the very constrained circumstances.

Since a live competition is not possible at this time, the Final Round of the Concerto-Aria Competition is based this year on an unedited video recording of approximately 20 minutes, recorded by the majority of candidates at home under lockdown conditions. Eighteen students have been selected for the Final Round based on nominations and preliminary rounds conducted in each performance area. The 18 finalists represent all concert repertoire areas in the Conservatorium, competing with concert arias for voice and concertos for piano, violin, cello, clarinet, flute, saxophone, trumpet, horn, bass trombone, guitar, and percussion.

Finalists will submit their recordings by Thursday October 15. The Adjudication Panel will convene to review all recordings and up to three prize winners will be announced on this website by 6pm on October 17. All recordings will be judged only on performance quality, not on recording quality or other factors arising from recording under lockdown conditions.

We are especially delighted to announce that this year $2000 in prize money is available thanks to the generous support of the Australian Decorative and Fine Arts Society Melbourne. Up to three prizes may be awarded at the discretion of the Adjudication Panel, which this year includes internationally renowned pianist Caroline Almonte, Head of Orchestral Studies Associate Professor Richard Davis, and Director of Wind Symphony and Concert Band Associate Professor Nicholas Williams.

As soon as possible, the three prize winners will be invited to record their concerto performance (with piano accompaniment) in Hanson Dyer Hall under excellent recording conditions. These prize winners’ recordings will be available for streamed viewing on this website later in 2020, and we invite you to return to enjoy their performances and celebrate the artistry and dedication of these Conservatorium students!

Selected finalists will be invited to give a solo performance with a Conservatorium ensemble in 2021, as soon as conditions allow.  Their performances will be presented live, if possible, or recorded and streamed online.  More information about these performances will be made available on this website in the months ahead.

Thank you for your interest in our competition, and above all, in the commitment and brilliance of our students, who are all rising above the adversities of the moment!