Wed, Jan 05, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Local pianist wins world tour

WITHOUT PEER:After winning the first prize in the solo category of the Grieg contest in Oslo, Ivan Lin will perform in major cities such as Moscow and New York

Staff Writer, with CNA

Taiwanese pianist Ivan Lin plays a grand piano in an undated photo provided by the Council for Cultural Affairs. Lin, who won first prize in the piano solo category in the 11th Grieg International Piano Competition in Oslo in September, will start a world tour in March.

PHOTO: CNA

Pianist Ivan Lin (林聰敏) will embark on a world tour in March, which is part of his prize for winning a major international piano competition in Oslo, Norway, last year, the Council for Cultural Affairs said yesterday.

Lin, 23, will give recitals in Europe and the US this year, the council said.

The young musician, who is a piano major at Germany’s University of Music, Drama and Media Hanover, won first prize in the piano solo category in the 11th Grieg International Piano Competition in September.

He was also awarded a special prize for best interpretation of a romantic composer.

“The win was an encouragement for me, especially in a spiritual sense,” he said at a press conference held by the council in his honor. “I hope it will lead me on a path to more opportunities and greater confidence.”

At the competition, more than 60 contestants, aged 17 to 35, were required to perform in three rounds over four days and the three finalists had to play live with an orchestra on the fourth day, he said.

The young pianist said that he usually drinks several cups of coffee before a performance to help overcome his stage fright, but this time, he was calm and did not need caffeine in the final round of the contest.

His first prize award gives him the chance to perform in major cities around the world such as Oslo, Moscow, New York and Hanover, starting in March.

He will also give a recital in Paris at the invitation of UNESCO later this year.

Lin began learning the piano when he was 12 years old and quickly became a child star in Taiwan. He was the first-prize winner of the 13th International Piano Competition Citta di Barletta in Italy in 2003.

Lin said he first heard the music of the 19th century Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg when he was 13, and instantly fell in love with the style that featured the German romantic tradition with strong national overtones.

His musical career so far has been a long road, he said, adding he could not have made it without the support of his family and friends.

Lin’s mother, Lee Miao-hua (李妙華), said he will graduate from the German university this summer and would like to study in the US, but funding is a problem.

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