Classical Music

Candidates announced at Violin Edition of Concours Musical International de Montreal


The competition’s violin edition will be held this coming spring in Montreal, Canada, from April 22 to May 4, 2023


Open to violinists of all nationalities, born between January 1, 1993, and December 31, 2006, the violin edition of the Concours musical international de Montréal (CMIM) will award nearly $160,000 CAD in prizes and awards.

After receiving a record 248 applications from 37 countries, 24 candidates were invited to participate. They range between the ages of 17 and 27 and are from 11 different countries.

The 2023 CMIM Violin Candidates include:

David Bernat, USA

Claire Bourg, USA

Aaron Chan, Canada / China

Elli Choi, USA

SongHa Choi, South Korea

Gabrielle Després, USA / Canada

Leonard Fu, Germany

Yeyeong Jenny Jin, South Korea

Lorenz Karls, Sweden

Yesong Sophie Lee, USA

SooBeen Lee, South Korea

Bohdan Luts,  Ukraine

Nathan Meltzer, USA

Georgii Moroz, Ukraine

Kyumin Park, South Korea

Aoi Saito, Japan

Michael Shaham, Isarel

Dongyoung Jake Shim, South Korea

Karen Su, USA

Ruslan Talas, Kazakhstan

Dmytro Udovychenko, Ukraine

Pauline van der Rest, Belgium

Shihan Wang, China

Zhixin Zhang, China


“We are delighted to welcome these young and talented violinists to Montreal,” CMIM Executive and Artistic Director, Christiane LeBlanc said. “The exceptional quality of the selected violinists will undoubtedly offer our audiences a superlative musical experience. What a pleasure to gather around them and our prestigious jury, and to live the thrill of the competition together.”

First prize will be awarded $80,000, second prize will receive $15,000, and third prize will get $10,000. Additional awards include the People’s Choice Award, Best Canadian Artist, Best Interpretation of a Sonata, Best performance of a work by J.S. Bach, Best performance of an imposed Canadian work, among others. There is also a Normand Beauchamp Winner’s Tour to Three North American Cities worth $15,000.

The jury of the 2023 CMIM includes Zarin Mehta (President of the Jury), Salvatore Accardo, Koichiro Harada, Yura Lee, Michaela Martin, Lucie Robert, Dmitri Sitkovetsky, and Krishna Thiagarajan.

The first live round will take place on April 25, 26, and 27, and the semi-final on April 29 and 30. They will both be held at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts’ Bourgie Hall with afternoon (2 pm) and evening (7:30 pm) sessions each day.

The final will take place on May 3 and 4, both at 7:30 pm at the Maison symphonique de Montréal. The six finalists will perform with guest conductor  Rafael Payare and the CMIM’s official orchestra, the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM) for both evenings of the final.

Travel and accommodation expenses are provided to the candidates, who will also be encouraged to bring their own collaborative pianist — for whom the Concours will also provide housing and a stipend for travel.

As one of the competition’s official 2023 media partners, The Violin Channel will be providing exclusive rolling coverage – live from all venues. The 2023 violin jury will be announced soon and chosen violin candidates will be announced on February 1, 2023.

In 2019, VC Young Artist Hao Zhou was awarded first prize in the last violin edition. Other former major prize winners include VC Artists Ayana TsujiBomsori KimMinami YoshidaBenjamin BeilmanNikita Borioso-GlebskyStephen WaartsMarc Bouchkov, and Fedor Rudin.


Watch the 2019 first prize winner Hao Zhou below:


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