33rd Annual Irving M. Klein International String Competition
June 2 – 3, 2018, San Francisco California
Applications are now closed. Thank you to everyone who applied. Semifinalists will be announced March 30th.
The Irving M. Klein International String Competition is presented by California Music Center and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. For the past 32 years, “the Klein” has attracted some of the world’s finest young string players to San Francisco each June to compete for cash and performance prizes. Violinists, violists, cellists and bassists age 15 to 23 of any nationality are eligible to compete. The Klein Competition has achieved international recognition as one of the most prestigious classical music competitions, recognized for the high caliber of the contestants; its unique, nurturing environment; and its commitment to the commissioning of new works.
Its award carries the distinction that has helped many top soloists gain prominence in the competitive world of classical music, including Jennifer Koh, Mark Kosower, Vadim Gluzman, Jennifer Frautschi, Alban Gerhardt, Frank Huang and Robert deMaine; up and coming players David Requiro (2006), Tessa Lark (2008) and Nikki Chooi (2009); and principal chairs in many of the finest U.S. orchestras, including the Philadelphia and Cleveland Orchestras, the New York Philharmonic, and the Boston Symphony.
Jeremy Tai, a freshman cello student of Northwestern’s Bienen School professor Hans Jensen, won the 2017 first prize. He was also awarded the competition’s Allen R. and Susan E. Weiss Memorial Prize for Best Performance of the Commissioned Work, receiving more than $13,000 in prizes, including performances with our producing partners, the Peninsula and Santa Cruz Symphonies, the Gualala Arts Chamber Music Series, the Music in the Vineyards festival, and other performance opportunities. In the final round of competition, Tai performed Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante in E minor and Grieg’s Cello Sonata in A minor, as well as the commissioned work by Lisa Bielawa, Insomnia Etude #3 – 5:15am.
The competition is named for the late cellist and master teacher who devoted himself untiringly to the development of young artists.