MAY 22–JUNE 7, 2009


Beverley Taylor Smith Award for the Best Performance of a New Work: Nobuyuki Tsujii ($5,000)
Steven De Groote Memorial Award for Best Performances of Chamber Music: Evgeni Bozhanov and Yeol eum Son ($3,000 each)
John Giordano Jury Chairman Discretionary Award: Alessandro Deljavan ($4,000)
Raymond E. Buck Jury Discretionary Award*: Lukáš Vondrácek ($4,000)
Jury Discretionary Award: Eduard Kunz ($4,000)
Internet Audience Award: Mariangela Vacatello


NOBUYUKI TSUJII  The Japanese pianist rocketed to celebrity status when he won Cliburn gold. He has performed in the top venues across four continents and is an exclusive recording artist for Avex Classics International. He was featured prominently in the 2021 Tokyo Paralympics Opening Ceremony, and is the subject of Peter Rosen’s documentary Touching the Sound.

HAOCHEN ZHANG The Chinese pianist’s career continues to grow since his 2009 Cliburn appearance: BIS Records released his first acclaimed concerto album, made subscription debuts with the New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestras, and recently collaborated with Shangri-La Hotels on their 50th anniversary #withheart campaign.

YEOL EUM SON The South Korean followed her silver medal win at the Cliburn with silver at the Tchaikovsky Competition in 2011. Her performance career spans North America, Europe, and Asia, and she records for DECCA and Onyx. Recognized for her versatility and creativity, she was appointed artistic director of Music in PeongChang 2018; she is also active as a writer and TV personality and collaborated with Chanel on its 100th Anniversary for W Korea magazine.

EVGENI BOZHANOV  The native of Bulgaria has built a reputation as a risk-taking, original pianist and is active in Europe and Asia. He was appointed professor of piano at the Folkwang Universität der Künste (Essen) in 2019, the same year as his latest recording by Avanticlassic.

MARIANGELA VACATELLO Ms. Vacatello was artist-in-residence alongside composer Georges Aperghis at IRCAM, a Paris-based incubator for music and technology. A prolific recording artist, she released her newest recording of Chopin and Schumann in August 2021, which joins a versatile discography featuring Ginastera, Liszt, and Debussy. Based in Umbria, she balances her performance activities with her commitment to teaching at the Conservatoire “F. Morlacchi” and the Pinerolo International Music Academy.

DI WU Now based in Montreal, Ms. Wu has performed widely in Asia, Europe, and the United States, highlighted by collaborations with Christoph Eschenbach, James Conlon, Ludovic Morlot, Yu Long, and Charles Dutoit. She embarked on a sold-out arena tour with singer Sarah Brightman in China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Mexico, and a sold-out stadium concert in Tokyo, which was recorded and released by Sony-Epic Records.


John Giordano, chairman (United States)
Marcello Abbado (Italy)
Dmitri Alexeev (Russia)
Hung-Kuan Chen (United States)
Michel Beroff (France)
Richard Dyer (United States)
Joseph Kalichstein (Israel)
Yoheved Kaplinsky (Israel)
Jürgen Meyer-Josten (Germany)
Menahem Pressler (United States)
Tadeusz Strugała (Poland)


Conductor: James Conlon
Chamber Music: Takács Quartet
Orchestra: Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra
American Composers Invitational Grand Prize: Mason Bates ($5,000)
American Composers Invitational New Works: Mason Bates, White Lies for Lomax; Derek Bermel, Turning; Daron Hagen, Suite for Piano; John Musto, Improvisation & Fugue
Master of Ceremonies: Fred Child
Official Artwork:  Ivan Chermayeff, incorporating Treble Clefs by Josef Albers, 1932. Courtesy of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation.
Documentary: A Surprise in Texas: The Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, directed by Peter Rosen