ensembles from trio to sextet
for strings, or strings and piano (or harp),
or also with one wind instrument
CHAMBER MUSIC Competition
- Prizes: 25,000 Euros
- Deadline: 15.06.2024
- Open to: musicians of any nationality
- Age limit: Average age 30 years (maximum individual age 33 years)
- Lugano: 5-7 September 2024
Rules for the 2024 Chamber Music Competition
The competition is open to chamber music ensembles from trios to sextet, for strings or strings and piano (or harp), or also with one wind instrument (ex. string quartet with clarinet / trio with flute, viola and harp / quartet with clarinet, violin, cello and piano, etc.) with members of any nationality.
Age limit: ensemble average age 30 years (maximum individual age 33 years). None of the ensemble members can be over 33 years old (they have to be born after 1.1.1991). The jury reserves the right to make small exceptions.
All members must play in all pieces.
a) Programme for the first round
Video recording uploaded on a private channel (i.e. youtube, vimeo, etc.), indicating on the application form the link, with place and date of the recording.
The repertoire presented must be original and correspond to the following details:
- Contain at least two pieces from different periods and styles: one composed before 1900 and one piece composed after 1900.
- The total duration of the programme must be about 40-60 minutes.
- The recording must be integral (not edited or cut within the pieces. Cuts are possible only between pieces or between movements) and not older than one year.
In the first round, the programme may include also single movements if the piece is too long.
In the second and third rounds, the pieces must be complete.
b) Programme for the second round (semi-final)
Two or more freely chosen pieces, at least one of them composed before 1900 and at least one composed after 1900.
The total duration of the programme must be between 20 and 40 minutes.
During the second round, the jury may request to hear only part of the chosen programme.
c) Programme for the third round (final)
Freely chosen concert programme of max 50 minutes without a break.
Only original parts are allowed, no photocopies.
In the second round, it is permitted to play the same pieces presented for the first round (recording). For the final round the choice of the programme is free.
Applications must be received by the Competition Office of the GIANNI BERGAMO CLASSIC MUSIC AWARD no later than 15 June 2024 (date of reception) per email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The applications must contain:
- The duly completed registration form
- A colour photo of the ensemble
- A photocopy of the passport or other identity document of each member of the ensemble
- Short curriculum vitae (résumé) in Italian or English (max. one A4 page) of the ensemble and of each member
- the scores of the recorded pieces in pdf format
- programme of the competition (first, second and third rounds, see Art. II) specifying the duration of each piece.
Incomplete applications will be rejected. Documents and musical material sent will not be returned.
We do not request any enrolment or participation fee.
The members of the jury are:
- Gianni Bergamo
- Jürg Dähler
- Roberto Plano
- Felix Renggli
- Bruno Weinmeister
The organizers reserve the right to substitute one or more jurors.
If, in the two years before the beginning of the competition, a member of the jury has taught any of the applicants, an internal rule, defined by the jury at the beginning of the competition, will be applied. At the beginning of the competition, each jury member must submit a declaration about his/her own relationship with the applicants, according to the above mentioned decision.
The jury evaluates and selects the participants according to these regulations and according to the internal procedures determined in accordance with the official regulations.
The voting procedure for the second and third rounds is open within the jury; the decisions are determined by a majority of the votes. The decisions of the individual jury members are not made public outside of the jury.
The participants are not allowed to contact jury members at any time as long as they are in the competition.
A core group of the jury will make the first selection. The results of the first round should be communicated no later than 15 July 2024. The decisions of the jury are indisputable; no justification will be given.
The applicants admitted to the competition will receive a written confirmation with detailed information regarding the development of the next rounds. Foreign participants who need a visa in order to enter Switzerland can apply for the visa using the above mentioned confirmation.
The participants admitted must send the pieces for the second and third round to the Competition Office in pdf format not later than 31 July 2024.
The competition (2nd round – semi-final and 3rd round – final) will take place in Lugano from 5 to 7 September 2024.
Each participant must arrive and register in person at the Competition Office on the day of the group’s performance with a valid identity document. The date and time will be communicated no later than 31 July 2024.
The participants must be readily available during the entire period of time in which they are in competition. Participants must avoid any kind of professional engagement or concert for the entire duration of the competition (2nd and 3rd round).
Any group which takes part in the competition (regularly invited by the Competition Office) but for any reason does not satisfy all conditions of the rules of the competition, immediately looses the right to take part in the competition and to any reimbursement.
For all rounds of the competition, the participants’ travel, room and board are at their own expense.
The Organization is available for any information and also assistance in booking accommodation, if necessary.
Each group admitted to the second turn will receive a forfeit amount (CHF 120 per person) to partially cover travel and accommodation expenses.
1st prize: Euro 12’000
2nd prize: Euro 8’000
3rd prize: Euro 5’000
The jury reserves the right not to award the prizes or to assign them in a different way.
The competition organisation will do its best to find interesting performance opportunities for the winners. The winners are required to accept such engagements. For these concerts, no additional monetary compensation will be given.
The participants give their consent to radio and television broadcasts and transmissions as well as to any audio and video recordings which may be made during the competition performances, without incurring any additional obligation from the organizers.
The organizers reserve the right to modify these regulations; any changes will be communicated to the participants in due course.
The decisions of the jury are final and binding. Entry in the competition implies full acceptance of the jury's decisions and of these regulations.
The competition rules in the Italian language shall be legally binding.
Participants waive all rights to initiate legal proceedings against the decision of the jury.
For any details not included in these competition rules, the Swiss Code of Obligations (Codice svizzero delle obbligazioni) and the specific laws are binding.
For additional information, please contact:
GIANNI BERGAMO CLASSIC MUSIC AWARD, Competition Office
c/o Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana
Via Soldino 9
Tel. +41 (0)91 960 30 44
Mob. +41 (0)76 560 63 12
Fax +41 (0)91 960 30 41
Enrolment form 2024
Maestro Gianni Bergamo
Gianni Bergamo was born in Milan, Italy in 1941, attended primary school in Italy and Liceo in Switzerland. After a degree in Economy (1964) at the Catholic University of Milan, he dedicated himself to the study of music with Tissoni (harmony and composition), D. Maffeis (organ) and N. Sanzogno (orchestra conducting) at the Conservatory of Bergamo, Italy.
From 1964 to 1994 has been a businessman with his own import-export, real estate and finance companies, though at the same time he has remained close to music and to its world.
In 1990 he created the Cultural Association “Gli Amici Cantori”, first as a chorus alone, then later accompanied by an orchestra. He has given many concerts in Italy with them, preferring the symphonic-sacred repertoire (masses, oratories, passions, etc.). At present, he lives in Santiago del Chile.
Jürg Dähler, born in Zurich, international activity as violinist, violist, pedagogue, and chamber musician as well as organizer and curator of renowned festivals and concert series. Studies with Sándor Végh, Heribert Lauer and Pinchas Zukerman on the violin as well as with Christoph Schiller, Kim Kashkashian and Fjodor Druschinin on the viola. Formative longterm artist encounters with Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Heinz Holliger, Brenton Langbein and György Ligeti. After his debut in the Zurich Tonhalle with the world premiere of Daniel Schnyder's viola concerto dedicated to him, he was a guest with many renowned orchestras under conductors such as Giorgio Bernasconi, Douglas Boyd, Friedrich Cerha, Thierry Fischer, Beat Furrer, Reinhard Goebel, Heinz Holliger, Brenton Langbein, Petri Sakari, Stefan Sanderling, Heinrich Schiff, Jac van Steen, Marcello Viotti and Thomas Zehetmair. Concert tours as a soloist and chamber musician have regularly taken him to Australia, the US and all over Europe with performances at the Wigmore Hall in London, the Salzburg Festival and the Wiener Festwochen, the City of London Festival, the Lucerne Festival, the Venice Biennale and at the Montreux Jazz Festival. From1985-2000 he was a member and Primarius of the legendary Kammermusiker Zurich. In 1993 he co-founded of the Collegium Novum Zurich. Since 1993 he holds the position as principal violist at the Musikkollegium Winterthur and is a member of the Winterthur String Quartet. In 1999 he co-founded the Swiss Chamber Concerts and runs since 2015 the Pentecost Festival at Schloss Brunegg as its artistic director.
He received much international acclaim for his world premiers and first performances of solo and chamber music works - many of which are written and dedicated for him - by composers such as Birtwistle, Blank, Braun, Bodman-Rae, Cerha, Danner, Dayer, Drushinin, Dubugnon, Dusapin, Furrer, Gaudibert, Gervasoni, Haller, Hefti, Henze, Holliger, Jost, Käser, Kelterborn, Kür, Lehmann, Ligeti, Moser, Pärt, Polglase, Racine, Schnyder, Wyttenbach, Vassena and Zimmerlin. He produced over 30 CDs for labels such as ECM, NEOS, Genuin, Accord, Claves, Grammont, Jecklin and Cantando. Currently he teaches at the Kalaidos University and gave master classes at many renowned teaching institutes such as Conservatorio di Musica “Arrigo Boito” di Parma, the Sydney Conservatorium of Music or the National Academy of Music in Melbourne. In 2007 he obtained the title “Executive Master in Arts Administration” from the Faculty of Philosophy and Economics at the University of Zurich with summa cum laude. In 2008 he received the Zolliker Art Prize for his artistic work and his services to the Swiss cultural life, and in 2020 he was honoured with the Swiss Music Prize for his dedicated work for the Swiss Chamber Concerts. He plays a violin by Antonio Stradivarius, Cremona 1714, and a viola by Raffaele Fiorini, Bologna 1893.
Italian native Roberto Plano performs regularly throughout North America and Europe – notably at Lincoln Center, Sala Verdi, Salle Cortot, Wigmore Hall and the Herkulessaal. He has appeared with orchestras all over the world, under the direction of renowned conductors such as Sir Neville Marriner, James Conlon, Pinchas Zuckerman, Miguel Harth-Bedoya. He has been a featured recitalist at the internationally acclaimed Newport Festival, the Portland Piano Festival, Ravinia Festival and the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival (USA), Chopin Festival (Poland), the Bologna Festival - Great Soloists (Italy), and many others. He played with String Quartets such as the Takacs, Cremona, St. Petersburg, Fine Arts, Jupiter, Muir, as well as soloists such as Ilya Grubert, Pavel Berman, Jiri Barta, Enrico Bronzi, and in duo with his wife Paola Del Negro.
Mr. Plano was the First Prize Winner at the 2001 Cleveland International Piano Competition, Prize Winner at the Honens, Dublin, Sendai, Geza Anda and Valencia Competitions and Finalist at the 2005 Van Cliburn and the Busoni Competitions, in addition to having won 15 First Prizes in National Competitions in Italy. In January 2018 he won the American Prize in the solo professional division. Mr. Plano’s engaging personality has made him a favorite guest on radio programs such as NPR’s Performance Today.
He has recorded more than 20 commercial CDs for Briliant, Sipario, Azica, Arktos, DaVinci, Concerto, being awarded five stars by several music magazines. and he recently released several World Première CDs with music by Andrea Luchesi (1741-1801). Mr. Plano gave the world premiere of two Luchesi piano concertos with the Busoni Chamber Orchestra in Trieste, Italy; the US premiere took place with the Toledo Symphony, Stefan Sanderling conducting. Mr. Plano’s debut recording with DECCA Classics was also recently released, featuring the “Harmonies Poetiques et Religieuses” by Liszt, which have not been recorded by Decca since the 60’s. Recent events include soloist appearances with Kremerata Baltica at the Portogruaro International Festival in Italy, with the Royal Camerata at the Athenauem Theater in Bucarest (Romania) and with the Boston Civic Symphony at Regis College, and recitals and chamber music concerts at the Stellenbosh Symposium, Sudafrica, at the Yamaha Center, Taiwan, at Vivace Vilnius Festival in Lituania, Gijon International Piano Festival in Spain and at the Boston Athenauem in USA. He was also invited to give several concerts in Russia, including two concerts at the Kremlin State Palace in Moscow, and a 10-concert chamber music tour in China with The Juilliard School’s faculty Laurie Smukler and Darrett Adkins.
Mr. Plano studied at the Verdi Conservatory in Milan, the Ecole Normale “Cortot” in Paris, where he earned the Diplôme Supérieur de Concertiste, obtaining first prize with unanimous decision and congratulations of the Jury, and the Lake Como Academy. Mr. Plano has been described by The Chronicle as the “Pavarotti of the Piano” for his lyricism and defined by Chicago radio commentator Paul Harvey as the heir to Rubinstein and Horowitz. In Italy, he has appeared on the cover of the most important music magazine, Amadeus, and has been awarded several prizes, including the Lumen Claro, previously assigned to such noteworthy people as soprano Barbara Frittoli, stylist Ottavio Missoni, and economist Mario Monti. NY Times music critic Anthony Tommasini has written: “This Italian pianist showed artistic maturity beyond his years… there was a wonderful clarity and control of inner voices in his performances…”.
After joining in 2016 the Faculty of Boston University, in 2018 he has been appointed as Associate Professor of Piano at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. One of the most sought-after teachers in the world, Mr. Plano also regularly teaches during the summer at Rebecca Penneys Piano Festival and at Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival. Starting in 2023, he will be on the Faculty of Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana (Lugano, Switzerland) and Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester (UK).
Felix Renggli, born in Basel, Switzerland, studied flute with G. Hildenbrand, A.Nicolet and P-L. Graf. After graduating from the Music Academy Basel, he played as a solo flutist in various orchestras
Felix Renggli frequently performs as a soloist and chamber musician as well as teaching masterclasses throughout Europe, South America, the US, Japan, Korea and China and has appeared as a guest artist at numerous international music festivals. His regular collaboration with oboist, conductor and composer Heinz Holliger has profoundly impacted his work as a concert artist.
Renggli’s repertoire ranges from New Music (many premiere performances with the Swiss Chamber Soloists and the Ensemble Contrechamps), classical chamber music and solo repertoire, all the way to performances of Early Music on period instruments.
Since 1994 Felix Renggli is Professor for Flute and Chamber Music at the University of Music in Basel. He was a faculty member of the Music University of Freiburg, Germany from 2004 to 2014. Since 2014 he is also professor at the “Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana” in Lugano.
For more than 20 years Felix Renggli acts as one of three Artistic Directors of the Swiss Chamber Concerts, Switzerland’s first nationwide concert series, which obtained the “Swiss Music Prize 2020”.
Bruno Weinmeister is known as the principal cellist of the Dresden and Zurich opera houses.
Since 2017 he has been professor for violoncello at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna.
He studied the cello with Heinrich Schiff in Basel and Salzburg and with Wolfgang Boettcher in Berlin. His curiosity and fascination for music brought him together with the great musicians Heinz Holliger, Friedrich Cerha, Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Friedrich Gulda.
After studying conducting with Eiji Oue in Hanover, there is more intensive collaboration with Claudio Abbado as well as his assistant in Lucerne and Berlin. A musical assistant at the Bayreuth Festival, who conducts the orchestras of Lausanne, Basel and St. Gallen, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Vienna Volksoper and the Tonkünstler Niederösterreich.
As a guest solo cellist, he has played with the orchestras of the Bavarian State Opera, the Tonhalle Zurich, the Stuttgart Opera and the radio orchestras of Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt and Freiburg.
Bruno Weinmeister is a sought-after chamber musician: Heinz Holliger, Benjamin Schmid, Emanuel Pahud, Albrecht Mayer, Renaud Capuçon, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Leif Ove Andsnes, Alexander Lonquich, Jörg Widmann, Jan Gottlieb
He has played as soloists with the radio orchestras of Vienna, Berlin, Hamburg and Stuttgart, the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, the Konzerthausorchester Berlin, the orchestras of Lyon, Turin, Bologna and Glasgow, the Mozarteumorchester and the Brucknerorchester, the symphony orchestras of Basel and Bern, with conductors such as Francesco Angelico, Michael Gielen, Heinz Holliger, Heinrich Schiff, Susanna Mälkki, Sebastian Weigle, Theodor Guschelbauer, Ari Rasilainen, Christian Zacharias, Hans Graf, Leopold Hager, Günther Neuhold, Heribert Beisel, Karl-Heinz Stephens, Yuri Simonov.