Amateur pianist takes first prize hinh anh 1Pianist Nguyen Duc Kien (Photo:
Hanoi (VNA) - Amateur Nguyen Duc Kien beat 13 other contestants in the 7-9 year-old category at the Thailand 6th Mozart International Piano Competition to win first prize.

Kien, eight years old from Hanoi, is the smallest contestant in the group. He skilfully played the complete Sonata KV545 by Mozart at the final round to convince the jury panel.

His performances received many compliments from the jury, such as bringing a musical breath of fresh air, as well as satisfying the high requirements of difficult piano techniques.

“The Sonata is suited for adult players and requires a profound understanding and complicated performing technique,” said Kien’s piano teacher Dr Nguyen Huy Phuong.

“In the first round, the contestants are asked to perform pieces that are almost easy. However, many contestants showed their weak points by the time they had finished their performance. In the final round, I believed strongly that Kien would win the top prize.”

According to Dr Phuong, the competition required higher qualifications and more complicated skills than other piano contests. In the final round, all the contestants had to play a three movement sonata by Mozart.

This is difficult not just because of their length, but also the required techniques that young pianists need to perform each movement.

Kien has been studying piano for several years at the Hoang Cung Art Centre while he waits to be old enough to enter the Vietnam National Academy of Music (VNAM). He has won first prizes at festivals held by VNAM in 2015-16.

Besides Kien, three other contestants of VNAM also won prizes at the Thailand competition. In the 7-9 year-old category Tran Gia Quang was placed third. Trinh Bao Nhu and Nguyen Ngo Tue, both ten years old, won the second and third prizes, respectively, in the 10-12 year-old category.

The Thailand 6th Mozart International Piano Competition 2016 was organised in Bangkok from July 23 to 27. It was divided into four-age group categories from 7 to 24 years of age.

The competition drew contestants from many countries including the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Republic of Korea and Japan.

In the final round, all candidates had to compete in two sections and perform a complete work, movement or variation of a concerto or sonata by Mozart.

Previously, Quach Hoang Nhi and Dang Thai Vu took first and second prizes, respectively, in the 7-9 year-old category at the same contest in 2013. In 2014, Nguyen Ba Duy Anh won third prize in the 13-17 year-old category.-VNA