Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityThe Olympics of Piano: Gurwitz competition enters round two
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Young Sun Choi (Photo courtesy Robert Michaelson)
Young Sun Choi (Photo courtesy Robert Michaelson)
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The Olympics of Piano: Gurwitz competition enters round two

UPDATE: Round one of the Gurwitz International Piano Competition is in the books. Eight days of competitive piano playing in venues throughout the city, will culminate with three talented finalists playing with the Mexico City Philharmonic orchestra at the Tobin Center.

Round two starts Tuesday. CLICK HERE for the full schedule...


  • Zihao Wu, China
  • Chi-Jo Lee, Taiwan
  • Young Sun Choi, South Korea
  • Rachel Breen, USA
  • Yungyung Guo, China
  • Tatiana Dorokhova, Russia

A Junior Jury, comprised of outstanding area piano students ages 13 to 18, sat alongside the official competition jury during Round I. After careful deliberation, they announced their favorite, who received the Junior Jury Award ($2,500): Yungyung Guo of China.

The competition, which is free and open to the public, will continue Tuesday with Round II at the Diane Bennack Music Hall in the University of the Incarnate Word. An afternoon session from 1 to 4 p.m. will showcase three semifinalists in 50-minute blocks. An evening session from 6 to 10 p.m. will feature the remaining three after which the jury will deliberate and announce the three finalists and winner of Best Performance of a Work by a Latin or Spanish Composer ($5,000).

Round II will require the six semifinalists to include in their program one work by a composer from their country of origin and at least one work from a composer of Latin-American or Spanish origin. The latter is a nod to San Antonio’s cultural heritage.

Round III will be on Thursday February 1, 7 p.m. at the Jo Long Theatre, Carver Community Cultural Center. This world music round will see the three finalists perform a solo work composed after 1950, and then a commissioned work by San Antonio composer Aaron Prado, DMA, alongside principal members of the Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra. At the end of the round, the audience will text-to-vote their favorite to award a $5,000 prize.

In the fourth and final round, finalists will perform a piano concerto with the Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra, on February 3 at 7 p.m. at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. Scott Yoo, the 2024 competition’s jury chair and the orchestra’s artistic director, will not judge during this round and instead conduct the orchestra onstage with each finalist. The Gold, Silver, and Bronze Medals, carrying prizes of $30,000, $20,000, and $10,000, will be awarded at the end.


SAN ANTONIO - The Gurwitz International Piano Competition is returning to San Antonio.

Suhail Arastu, Advancement Director of Musical Bridges Around The World, sat down to talk with FoxSA about the significance and goals of this competition.

On Friday, twelve incredibly talented pianists from all over the world will be arriving in San Antonio and competing in one of the most acclaimed piano competitions.

The Gurwitz International Piano Competition takes place every four years in San Antonio and aims to bridge the world of classical piano with that of world music and culture.

The event will run from Jan. 26 to Feb. 4.

For schedules and tickets, please visit