18th April 2014 was a day to remember for all the young and up-and-coming pianists in the Indian city of Bangalore. The 1st Kawai Junior Piano Competition 2014 was organized at the Alliance Francais de Bangalore by Theme Music, Kawai distributor in India, in association with the Majolly Music Trust. Ms. Neecia Majolly, the founder of this school, is the convenor of the competition. She is a renowned pianist and vocalist, touring frequently around the world for concerts.
This is the first-ever event in India. It’s true that there are other piano competitions geared to the advanced level, however, none for the beginners. The primary aim of this competition is to encourage and promote musical culture among children and youth. Holding an annual piano competition can showcase the talent of gifted participants from all over the South India. The next goal is to make it nation-wide competition next year and to provide the promising India market with opportunities for music appreciation, better musical understanding and interaction with distinguished teachers for further musical growth. There were 39 participants ranged from 6 to 13 years old in the first round. In this round, each participant performed 2 contrastive pieces from the pre-approved repertoire. Kawai Grand Piano GE-30 was used at the competition, which filled the auditorium with its rich sonorous sound. Actually, many students laid hands on the grand piano for the first time.
The first prize winner, Ms. Deeni Golay (a student of Theme Music School Bangalore), a 12-year old, acquired a Kawai digital piano CN24 as the award. The second prize went to Ms. Aarya Ganesan, and Master Jungju Shim received the 3rd prize. There was also a ‘Promising Pianist’ prize which was awarded to Master Guychee Shinji. They also enjoyed guest performances by pianists Varsha Sastry and Srikanth Gnanasekharan.
Ms. Pauline Warjri, an accomplished pianist, teacher, composer, choirister, Jazz muscian from the Shillong, Meghalaya, was invited as a jury. She had warm words of advice, stating – “It is our duty as musicians to share this gift with the society. Parents, teachers, students, and instrument makers form the crux of this partnership”. Mr. Masayuki Nishio, Senior Executive Officer / GM of Export sales department of Kawai, praised for the event. He mentioned that in future years this event could be an important gateway for Indian participants to take part in the Kawai Asia Piano Competition.
There were about 200 people in the audience, parents, students, senior teachers, musicians, music lovers, press, etc. The event was well appreciated by the community, and several other teachers have shown interest in participating in the event next year.
Following the competition, Invited Guest Cocktail Dinner was held to celebrate the winners along with their parents at St Mark’s Hotel.It was a great time for the organizers, the guests, the winners to relax and enjoy each other’s company.
All in all, it was a wonderful day to connect with the future musicians of India. We are proud of Theme as a pioneer.