NEWS AND EVENTS
May 1, 2009
Uzbek pianist wins top prize at London International Competition
Park University International Center for Music student Behzod Abduraimov of Uzbekistan won first prize in the London International Piano Competition 2009.
The 18-year-old Abduraimov, the youngest first prize-winner in the history of the competition, was awarded the top prize after the competition\'s \"Grand Final\" on April 28 at Royal Festival Hall. Abduraimov was the youngest of the 24 pianists who performed in the competition, which began on 18 April. In the final, Abduraimov performed with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, playing Prokofiev\'s \"Concerto in C, op.26.\"
The chair of the jury, Sulamita Aronovsky, described Abduraimov\'s performance as \"literally breathtaking, astonishing in its vitality and tonal range.\"
Abduraimov\'s prize includes a cash award, a solo CD recording on the Naxos/Marco Polo label, and a series of concerto and solo engagements in the forthcoming season, including a concert with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and a recital at Wigmore Hall.
Held every three years, the London International Piano Competition presents a series of concerts at Southbank Centre, attracting young talent from around the globe. The semifinals were on 25 and 26 April, and opening rounds were held 18-19 April at Duke\'s Hall, Royal Academy of Music.
Abduraimov, born in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, performed his first solo recital at the age of 8 and has since had public appearances in the US, Italy, Russia and Uzbekistan.
Earlier this month, he won the top prize in the Salina (Kan.) Symphony\'s King Award for Young Artists Piano Competition, 3-4 April at Kansas Wesleyan University. He was awarded US$5,000 and will return to Salina in the fall to perform with the Symphony at its 2009-10 season opener on 11 October.
Abduraimov has won numerous competitions all over the world. He won third prize in the \"Musician of XXI Century\" international piano competition in Kazakhstan in 2000 and a diploma from the International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Xiamen, China, in 2002. He also won first prize in the International Piano Competition \"Le Muze\" in Agropoli, Italy, in 2003, and at the Lennox International Young Artists Competition last year.
Abduraimov is currently pursuing a bachelor\'s degree at the International Center for Music at Park University, where he studies under Van Cliburn International Piano Competition gold medalist Stanislav Ioudenitch.