Trio Marvin has taken out the $30,000 Grand Prize at the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, as well as the $22,500 First Prize in the Piano Trio division. German-South Korean Trio Gaon won Second Prize in the Piano Trio division, while Third Prize went to the Amatis Piano Trio, with musicians from the Netherlands, Germany and the UK.

Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, MICMC, Trio MarvinTrio Marvin: Cellist Marius Urba, pianist Vita Kan and violinist Marina Grauman. Photo © Mike Keating

Germany’s Goldmund Quartett won First Prize in the String Quartet division, taking home $30,000, with the Eliot Quartett – from Austria, Russia and Germany – taking second and the USA’s Callisto Quartet taking Third Prize.

“The standard has been exceptional, making the jurors’ decision extremely challenging,” MICMC Artistic Director Wilma Smith said. “We’ve been privileged to witness the future of chamber music taking shape right here in Melbourne. And what a future that will be!”

All competitors in the second round of heats performed new works by Australian composers commissioned especially for the competition. The Goldmund Quartett won the Quartet Commission Prize for the best performance of Holly Harrison’s Balderdash and Trio Gaon won the Trio Commission Prize for the best performance of Paul Stanhope’s Pulses. The South Korean Baum Quartett and Trio Gaon took out the two Audience Prizes.

The ensembles competed in front of a jury of chamber music heavyweights, from Sonia Simmenauer, director of one of the world’s leading agencies for chamber music ensembles; to Melbourne pianist and composer Ian Munro; Simin Ganatra, first violinist of the Pacifica Quartet; Gerhard Schulz, former second violinist of the Alban Berg Quartet; Yura Lee, Member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and soloist and chamber musician on both violin and viola; Alasdair Tait, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Young Classical Artists Trust; and Kyril Zlotnikov, cellist with the Jerusalem Quartet.

“I’d like to express my heartfelt thanks to our esteemed jury, our many supporters, donors, volunteers, staff and, of course, the 56 remarkable young musicians who’ve made MICMC 2018 such a memorable and exciting week,” Smith said. “I’d also like to acknowledge the teachers, families and friends who’ve played such a huge role over many years to get them to this point where they can bring so much happiness to others through their playing.”

The winners of the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition Grand Prize and Piano Trio Division Trio Marvin will perform at the Independent Theatre in North Sydney as part of Musica Viva’s Coffee Concerts Series on July 11.


Read Tony Way’s review of the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition here.