by Daniel Hathaway
Having postponed its Cleveland International Piano Competition until 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Piano Cleveland has come up with a clever placeholder for the summer of 2020 that will allow 30 pianists, ages 18-30, to compete in a worldwide virtual contest while providing participants with across-the-board financial support.
In a recent telephone conversation, Piano Cleveland CEO Yaron Kohlberg said the idea for Virtu(al)oso grew out of the success of their Quarantine Concerts, a quickly-organized series of eight Thursday evening performances that came together only a few days after Governor DeWine’s stay-at-home order went into effect. Streamed from Steinway Piano Gallery Cleveland between March 19 and May 7, the concerts featured local artists and gave viewers the opportunity to contribute to a Musicians’ Fund.
“It surpassed our goals,” Kohlberg said. “We went into the series not knowing really what to expect. We just knew that we wanted to react as quickly as possible and try to support our musicians. People were so kind and generous, and responded so well.” [Read more…]