Chopin competition 2014

The Second Australian International Chopin Piano Competition will be held at the ANU School of Music from 15-21 September 2014. There will be 3 rounds:

  • Round 1 and 2 (preliminary stage) 16-17 September 2014 (two stages of 20 minutes each)
  • Round 3 (semi-final) on 19 September 2014 (6 competitors will be chosen to perform a 40-50 minute recital)
  • Round 4 (final) 21 September 2014 (3 competitors will be chosen to perform)
Artistic Director Maciej Pawela and the ANU School of Music are very pleased to announce the 15 international competitors selected for the competition from a pool of extremely impressive entrants.


  • ANU School of Music
  • Embassy of the Republic of Poland
  • Friends of Chopin Australia

Sponsors & Donors

  • Pratt Foundation
  • Yamaha Australia
  • Christine Goode
  • Council of Polish Organisations in the ACT
  • Friends of the School of Music
  • Theme & Variations Piano Services


  • First Prize - $25,000 Donated by the Pratt Foundation, Melbourne
  • Second Prize - $10,000 Donated by Friends of Chopin Australia, Canberra
  • Third Prize - $5,000 Donated by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Canberra
  • People's Choice prize - $1,500 Donated by the Council of Polish Organisations in the ACT

For further requests and media enquiries, please contact



Born in Ukraine, Elina Akselrud made her first appearance with an orchestra at the age of eight, studying at Kiev Special Music School with Prof. Irina Lipatova and Irina Barinova. Elina is a prize winner in international piano competitions, such as “Konzerteum” (Greece), In Memory of Vladimir Horowitz (Ukraine), Chopin Competition for Youth (Poland), “III Citta di Ostra” (Italy), “5 Towns” (NY, USA). She has performed in Ukraine, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and the U.S. She has played concertos with several orchestras, including the Ukrainian National Orchestra, Ithaca College Symphony, and the Kaufman Center Orchestra. In 2009 she performed the two Piano Concertos of Chopin with a string quintet at Mannes Concert Hall. In 2010 she took part in the “Chopin 200” Marathon at the World Financial Center in New York City. She is the winner of the “Chopin on Thousand Islands” International Piano Competition in Cape Vincent, NY (1st Prize, 2010) and The III Chopin International Piano Competition in Hartford, CT (1st Prize, 2012).

In 2012 Elina received her Bachelor of Music Degree with honors from Mannes College, The New School for Music, where she was a student of Prof. Irina Morozova. In 2014 she obtained a Master of Music Degree with honors under the tutelage of Prof. Alexander Korsantia at New England Conservatory in Boston, where she won the NEC Concerto Competition and appeared with NEC Symphony in Jordan Hall in November 2013. In June of 2014 Elina received the 2nd Prize at I Midwest International Piano Competition in Cedar Falls, IA, U.S.A.


At the age of nine years Aleksander started learning to play piano. After a year he continued learning at the Musical School in Bytom in the class of mgr Bogumiła Sobierajska (M.A.). From 2008 Aleksander studied in the piano class of mgr Agnieszka Kulikow-Świtała (M.A.). At present he is a first-year student in Master’s degree programme in the piano class of Professor of the Academy of Music, Wojciech Świtała.

During Master courses he worked among others under supervision of Andrzej Jasiński, Józef Stompel, Lee Kum Sing, Jan Jiracek von Arnim, Anna Malikova, Dina Joffe, and Eugen Indjic.

In 2006 he was awarded an honourable mention in the Third Polish-German Halina Czerny-Stefańska Piano Competition in Żagań and in the Sixth Polish National Ignacy Jan Paderewski Piano Competition in Piotrków Trybunalski. One year later Aleksander took 2nd place in the Fifteenth International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Szafarnia, then in 2009 3rd place in the Ninth Silesian Piano Competition, and 2nd place in the Polish National Auditions of Chamber Music Groups, together with music trio. In 2013 Aleksander won first prize in the competition organized within the framework of the International Piano Academy and Festival Wiener Neustadt 2013 and fourth prize in the Polish National Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw. In 2014 Aleksander won second degree scholarship in Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe.

In 2008 and 2010 Aleksander performed with the Symphonic Orchestra of the Silesian Philharmonic in Katowice.


Born in Perth, Kevin Chow started piano lessons at age 5. In 2007, he won the Bernstein National Piano Competition, completed his ABRSM Diploma and featured with the Fremantle Orchestra as piano soloist in several performances of Grainger’s The Warriors. Awards include the 3MBS Young Performer of the Year Award, Hephzibah Menuhin Award, Nehama Patkin Memorial Award, VMTA Kault Prize, LMusA Diploma with Distinction and South Eastern Arts Festival Chopin and Concerto Prizes. Kevin has given recitals in the USA, New Zealand, Indonesia, China and throughout Australia.

Kevin was selected to participate in the 18th Hilton Head International Piano Competition and was a recent semi-finalist in the Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition. In 2013 Kevin made his concerto debut performing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No 3 in D minor with the Zelman Symphony Orchestra, a performance he later reprised with the Preston Symphony Orchestra. Kevin was invited to perform for Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwell during their most recent Australian tour. He is currently a Bachelor of Music student at the University of Melbourne, studying piano with Glenn Riddle.


Korean-Canadian Pianist, Monica Han has been consistently recognized as a soloist in performances, festivals and competitions across the globe. She is a grand-prix winner of the British Columbia Provincial Competition and a Silver Medallist at the Canadian National Music Competition. While studying in New York City, she was awarded Honourable Mention at the International Union City Philharmonic Competition in New Jersey, and Bradshaw and Buono International Competition in New York.

Most recently, Monica won the audience’s favourite award and the first prize in the concerto competition with the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra. As a result, she is invited to play with them again in October. She has also made appearances with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and the Pilgrim Orchestra.

Monica has participated in many notable music festivals and has given performances in China, France, and Italy. She received mentorship from renowned pianists such as John Perry, Richard Goode, Vladimir Feltsman, Ruth Slenczynska, and Jon Kimura Parker.

In the fall of 2013, Monica was accepted into the Master’s program with a full scholarship at UBC. There, she is studying with Dr. Sara Davis Buechner. Monica holds a Bacherlor's Degree from Mannes College in New York City where she graduated with Honours, and two awards.

Aside from performing, Monica also enjoys teaching, volunteering, and accompanying. Currently, she is a teaching assistant of undergraduate musicianship courses at UBC, as well as a returning pianist at local senior homes and hospitals.


Yookyung Hong was born in Seoul in 1990. At the age of five she was introduced to the piano. Not long after she started the piano, she promised potential and talent in her piano playing skills. She entered numerous piano competitions in Korea for young pianists and evidently showed much development in her piano playing. Furthermore, through entering different competitions she has been able to build a solid musical background to launch her into the professional music world. In 2003 Yookyung and her family immigrated to Australia.

Through the world-class education system in Australia and from the variety of opportunities and performance related support, Yookyung successfully auditioned for the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (University of Sydney). In 2010 Yookyung undertook the Bachelor of Music (Performance) course and started her studies with renowned pianist and teacher Daniel Herscovitch. In 2011, Yookyung’s passion for the piano led her to further study in Germany.  Attaining the highest scores from the audition panel, Yookyung won a position to study at the University of Saar (Hochschule fur Musik saar). Upon entering the university, Yookyung participates in both chamber and solo piano performances, making a platform in which she is able to polish and develop herself into a well rounded pianist. Yookyung is studying under the tutelage of Professor Kristin Merscher.


Born in Taipei, Pianist Shih-Wei Huang completed her Bachelor of Music degree at the Curtis Institute and Master of Music degree at Yale University. Has studied with Claude Frank, Rolf-Peter Wille, Matti Raekallio, Daming Zhu and Hung-Kuan Chen. She was on the Jury for the 2nd Goerge Cup competition 2013. Laureate of piano competitions and artist awards in the United States, Italy and Taiwan.

She has won the 52nd Sorantin International Competition for Piano 2011, and The Dorothy MacKenzie Artist Recognition Award in NY, the CHIMEI Artist Award, Young Star Series artist in Taiwan, second prize in the International Chopin Competition in Taipei, third prize in the International Schmidbauer Competition, first prize in the International Mauro Paulo Monopoli Piano Competition. Performs as a soloist and as chamber musician in the United States, Italy and Taiwan, including concertos with the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra and members of the Philadelphia Orchestra.


Daria Kameneva was born in Moscow, Russia, where from her fifth age on she followed first piano lessons in the music school and started her first public performances. While still a student, she won several youth competitions and was consequently accepted to study at the Moscow Music College with Honored Teacher of Russia, Professor Natalia Suslova. In 2006 she joined the class of Honored Artist of Russia, Professor Stanislav Igolinsky at Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. Gradually she began to play concerts in Moscow and Russia; she appears today regularly in solo and chamber performances.

In 2008 she won 2nd prize and Chamber Music Prize at the IV International Piano Competition in Almaty (Kazakhstan). In 2011 Daria Kameneva won the 1st prize and Audience Prize at the European Piano Competition in France, which led eventually to the production of CD, released by german record company “Acousence” in 2012.

Daria’s repertoire includes works ranging from Bach until music of the 21st century, including solo works as well as a great range of chamber music and concertos with orchestra. Daria Kameneva constantly has recitals in the important halls of Moscow like the Bolshoi, Rachmaninoff and Maliy Halls of Tchaikovsky Conservatory, Moscow International Performing Arts Center and other cities and countries: so far she performed solo and chamber music programs in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of Belarus, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine.


Lucas Krupinski was born in 1992 in Warsaw. He started playing the piano at the age of 5. Currently is studying at the Frederic Chopin University of Music in Warsaw under the direction of prof. Alicja Paleta-Bugaj and dr Konrad Skolarski.

He has won many prestigious awards at national and international piano competitions, including: the Stanislaw Moniuszko International Competition of Slavic Music in Minsk, Belarus in 2011 (First Prize and a Special Award), the 44. Polish National F. Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw in 2012 (Third Prize) and the II Chopin Siberian International Piano Competition in Tomsk in 2013 (Grand Prix and two Special Awards).
 In 2014 he received a scholarship at the YAMAHA Music Foundation of Europe competition.

In 2013 he was granted the "Pro Polonia" Foundation Award and the Minister of Culture and National Heritage Prize for remarkable artistic achievements.

Lucas Krupinski participated in many international piano master classes, among others: with Andrzej Jasinski, Wojciech Switala, Alexey Orlowiecki, Anna Malikova, Katarzyna Popowa-Zydron, David Dolan, Alexey Sokolov, Michail Voskriesienski, Choong Mo-Kang and Arie Vardi. He has given numerous concerts in Poland, Belarus, Belgium, Norway, Germany, Spain, Russia and China.


Born in Melbourne, Aaron completed his Bachelor of Music in Advanced Performance (honours) last year at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University. He was also awarded the Griffith Award for Academic Excellence for his studies from 2010-2013.  He is now currently undertaking a Master of Music Studies in Performance under Oleg Stepanov.

Over the years, Aaron has achieved good success in competitions. Prizes include winning the National Yamaha Youth Piano Competition, Queensland MTAQ Piano Competition, the Yamaha Recitals Scholarship, Nora Baird Bursary, Ruby C Cooling Prize, Minnie May Bussey Prize, Matana Foundation for Young People Scholarship and numerous other awards.

Performance highlights have included concerts in the Tyalgum Festival of Music, Karana Downs Hinterland Festival, Theme & Variations Emerging Artists Concert Series, Yamaha Recitals Australia Showcase in Adelaide and the ANAM PIANO! Festival in Melbourne. He has also had recitals broadcasted on ABC Classic FM and Brisbane’s 4MBS. Aaron has also had the privilege of being selected to partake in the Hamamatsu International Piano Competition and Sydney International Piano Competition.


Jia-Nan Liu was born in ShanTou, China, and began studying piano when he was 5 years old. He studied with Lan Chen, ZhaoYi Dan, and Gabriel Kwok in ShenZhen Arts School from 2001. From 2008, he studied with Gabriel Kwok in The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. He studied with Meng-Chieh Liu in the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University as a full scholarship recipient since 2013. Now, he studies with Meng-Chieh Liu at New England Conservatory.

In 2004, Jia-Nan received the top prize of the National Secondary School Piano Competition in China. In 2005, he received the silver prize of the 6th Asian Chopin Piano Competition in Japan. In 2007, he received the second prize of the 4th Chinese Pieces Piano Competition in Hong Kong. In 2012, he has attended the Walnut Hill Music Festival in Boston. In the master classes, he has studied with Eleanor Wong, Hung-Kuan Chen, Pi-Hsien Chen, Ilja Scheps and Boris Slutsky.


Born in Tokyo in 1988, Kotaro Nagano graduated from Tokyo Metropolitan Senior High School of Music in 2007, and was a semi-finalist in the 2008 Montreal International Musical Competition. He went on to win both First Prize and Special Prize in the 12th Taipei International Chopin Piano Competition for the best performance

of Taiwanese composition in 2008, and performed a concert tour of Taiwan, including solo recitals of Chopin’s works in Taipei, and Chopin's 1st concerto with Kaohsiung City Symphony Orchestra in Kaohsiung (2009).

He has also won first prize in the Tokyo Piano Competition and a Diploma in The 16th Chopin International Piano Competition (Warsaw-Poland) in 2010, and won second prize and Special prize for the best performance of Chopin's Nocturne in The II International Piano Competition Halina Czerny-Stefanska in memoriam (Poznan-Poland) in 2011.

In 2012 he gave the first performance of the Piano Concerto by Makiko Kinoshita, with the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra.

Kotaro has performed numerous solo recitals in cities around the world, including Montreal, Tokyo, Aix en Provence and Krakow. He is currently studying under Prof. Dang Thai Son (Montreal) and Prof. Claudio Soares (Osaka).


Piotr Nowak was born in 1993, and at the age of six he started to play the piano.

He is currently a student at the Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz in the class of prof. Katarzyna  Popowa-Zydroń. He is one of the best young pianists in Poland : second prize in V International Chopin Piano Competition in Hartford (Connecticut, USA)(2014), first prize in the XVII International Piano Festival in Nałęczów (2013),  second prize in the 44th National Chopin Competition organized by the National Fryderyk Chopin Institute (Warsaw, 2012), first prize in the VIII International Competition "Chopin Golden Ring" (Radovljica, Slovenia, 2012), third prize at the International Competition for Young Pianists "Arthur Rubinstein in memoriam" (Bydgoszcz, Poland, 2011), the Grand Prix in the VII National Piano Festival "Chopin Interpretations of Young Pianists" (Konin, Żychlin, 2010), second prize in the National Auditions Classes Piano Music School (Warsaw, 2010).

He has participated in many piano courses cooperating with such professors as Arie Vardi, Choong-Mo Kang, Mikhail Voskresensky, Andrea Bonatta, Jan Gottlieb Jiracek von Arnim, John Perry, Anton Kuerti, LeeKum-Sing, David Moroz, Zhang Jin, Andrzej Jasiński, Jerzy Sulikowski, Jarosław Drzewiecki, Zbigniew Faryniarz, Andrzej Artykiewicz, Zbigniew Raubo, Piotr Kępiński.

He has performed in USA, Japan, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Slovenia and played recitals during official visits of such presidents as  François Hollande(France),  Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorja(Mongolia), Miloš Zeman(Czech Republic), Serż Sarkisjan(Armenia), Karolos Papoulias (Greece Republic).   He worked with the orchestras of Polish Radio, and polish Philharmonics.

He is a scholarship holder of the "Young Poland", was featured in the "My talent for Poland” and award-winning for the Arts by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage.


Konrad Olszewski holds a BMus (Piano Performance) from The University of Melbourne where he recently completed his Masters of Music (Piano Performance) under the guidance of Glenn Riddle. In 2013, Konrad embarked on a study venture in Europe that presented him the opportunity of working with eminent piano professors including Piotr Paleczny from The Chopin Academy, Warsaw and Leslie Howard from London. He was selected to participate in the 2013 London Masterclass Series directed by Norma Fisher (Royal College of Music) and also attended the 13th Sommerkurs Klavier at the Musikschule, Fellbach given by German pianist and teacher, Klaus Hellwig (Berlin).

Konrad has won first prize in the Ewa Malewicz Musical Scholarship (Sydney 2006), the Dorothy Glover Memorial Award (2006), the Herbert Davis Award (2006), the Chris Krans Instrumental Award (2006) and the Hephzibah Menuhin Memorial Award (2010). He has received many awards from the University of Melbourne MCM, including the J.S Bach Prize, the Lady Turner Exhibition Prize and the Searle Piano Faculty Merit Scholarship. He has performed many times as a soloist with the Zelman Symphony Orchestra and also gave a recital in Chopin’s birthplace in Zelazowa Wola, Poland in 2005.

More recently, Konrad has participated in the Sydney International Piano Competition and, soon after, was awarded the prestigious John Allison Sydney Eisteddfod Scholarship (2012) performing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Sonata No. 2. As an Associate Artist, he has received the Barry Bowen Accompanist award (2011), and has twice been awarded prizes as Best Accompanist in the National Liederfest (2011 and 2012). Konrad enjoys a busy schedule as a concert pianist, composer and collaborative pianist playing repertoire from a variety of genres including jazz.


The pianist Albertina Eunju Song was born in Seoul (South Korea) and began at the age of 5 years to play the piano with her mother. As a first success, she won the 1st Prize at the Chun-chu music competition in South Korea. In 1997 she was accepted to the Yewon School. After graduating from the school, she studied at the artistic high school in Seoul. From 2003 to 2007, she studied with a scholarship from the Yonsei University in the class of Prof. Young-lan Han, where she took out Bachelor with the highest honors. As one of the top graduates of the University she had a debut concert at the invitation of the renowned Korean newspaper "Cho-Sun" in Sejong Hall in Seoul.

In 2008 she moved to Germany and continued her studies in Stuttgart with Prof. Andrzej Ratusinki. Here she graduated with a Masters degree with the highest honors. She continued to study Solo Performance Class and received important artistic influences through master classes with Bernd Goetzke, Karl-Heinz Kaemmerling, Solomon Mikowsky, Bruno Rigutto, Kirill Gerstein and Pavel Gililov. She won numerous prizes at international competitions: 1st Prize and laureate at the International Piano Competition in Germany J. B. Cramer (2009), 1st Prize at the International Piano Competition in Italy Lia Tortora (2010), 1st Prize for the music prize of the Lions Club Stuttgart-Schlossgarten (2011), 3rd Prize, audience prize and special prize for the best interpretation of a work by Debussy at the International Piano Competition "Mayenne" in France (2012).

She has performed at the cultural program "ARTE" in South Korea and in many public concerts, so the Bechstein Centrum Tübingen, Rotary Club Latina Rome Piano Festival and the Mozart Society Stuttgart. Since 2013, she studies piano chamber music at the State University of Music and Performing Arts Stuttgart in the class of Prof. Florian Wiek. In January 2014 she won a 3rd and special jury prize in the “Carl-Wendling” Chamber-Music competition, Stuttgart. In March 2014 she won the Audience Prize of the German Piano Award 2014, awarded in the Alte Oper Frankfurt. 


Maciej Wota was born 5 December 1992 in Jarosław (Poland). He started piano playing at the age of four. In 2011 he graduated from Zenon Brzewski School of Music in Warsaw in prof. Jerzy Sterczyński’s piano class. Now he studies at The Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw also with prof. Jerzy Sterczyński. He participated in many master classes with professors such as: Andrzej Jasiński, Józef Stompel, Rem Urasin, David Dolan, Katarzyna Popowa-Zydroń. He has performed in Poland, Norway, England, Belgium, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and in Germany.

Maciej Wota is a laureate of many national and international piano competitions. The most important of them:

• First Prize and a special prize for the best performance of Chopin mazurkas in X

International Chopin Piano Competition in Antotnin, 2008
• First Prize in II National Chopin Competition in Rzeszów, 2009
• Second Prize in IV International Chopin Piano Competition in memoriam G. Ferenczy in Budapest and prize for the best performance of Chopin Polonaise (2010)
• Third Prize in National Competition for a secondary school’s students of piano playing, Warsaw 2010
• Fifth Prize and Chopin Prize in IX International Competition for Young Pianist Arthur Rubinstein in memoriam in Bydgoszcz, 2011
• Laureate of 46. Polish Piano Festival in Słupsk, 2012.

From 2008 to 2011 he was a scholar of Polish Childrens’s Fund.


The Competition is open to pianists of all nationalities, aged between 18 and 31 years (born between 1 January 1983 and 31 December 1996). Recipients of the first, second or third prize of the previous Competition in 2011 are not eligible to enter.


The jury will be chaired by Emeritus Professor Larry Sitsky AM (ANU School of Music, Canberra). The jury will also include:

  • international guest adjudicator Professor Wojciech Świtała (Academy of Music, Katowice, Poland)
  • Ms Shan Deng, University of Tasmania
  • Ms Natasha Vlassenko, Griffith University
  • Mr Maciej Pawela, ANU School of Music

Travel and Accommodation

International competitors living outside of Australia will be eligible to have their travel to Canberra reimbursed by ANU School of Music after arrival, to a maximum of AUD1000. International competitors are responsible for obtaining their own passports and visa documents.

Competitors will be billeted in the community, facilitated by the Friends of Chopin Australia.

Practice Facilities

Practice facilities will be provided by the ANU School of Music.​

For further enquires please contact:

Updated:  12 June 2013/Responsible Officer:  Head, School of Music/Page Contact:  Development Officer