by Mike Telin
History was made on August 4, when for the first time in the history of the Cooper Competition for Piano, the top prize was awarded to two participants. Pyotr Akulov and Sophia Shuya Liu were named co-champions following their concerto performances with David Robertson and The Cleveland Orchestra that Friday evening.
I reached Pyotr Akulov by Zoom outside of Düsseldorf, Germany.
Mike Telin: Good afternoon and thank you for taking the time to talk.
Pyotr Akulov: Thank you for your invitation.
MT: You’re in Germany right now — are you performing?
PA: No, I am just recovering from the competition, resting, and preparing to fly home to Moscow.MT: I’m glad you’re resting. You deserve it, which brings me to say congratulations, you played wonderfully.
PA: Thank you very much for your kind words.