Alessandro Deljavan is a Cliburn winner for me!

DeljavanOver at the Piano World forums, it’s the morning after selection of Cliburn Competition finalists, and many are aghast that a dynamic, soulful, and risk-taking pianist was overlooked.

Here’s what one poster said: “Competition winners are typically the reliable pianists somewhere in the middle when it comes to interpretation–those who don’t go out on a limb or offend the majority’s idea of good interpretation. Deljavan doesn’t fit this profile.” (He also included Claire Huangci in this category–to which I’m in agreement)

When I heard Alessandro Deljavan render the Schumann Fantasie, it felt as though he was the composer playing it. The pure fire, in the moment excitement, incredible virtuosity, left me breathless. It reminded me of hearing Gilels in Carnegie Hall when I was a kid. I nearly fell over the balcony in my unconstrained, impassioned embrace of such awe-inspiring artistry.

So very rarely does a pianist come along and rivet a listener to his every phrase. Too many are on the sidelines giving a “respectable” reading.

Flash forward to the competition ARENA in the Olympiad framing, and we have the judges penalizing the ones who may have a few note slip-ups, and go outside the M.M. (Metronome markings) These referees are fixated on petty details and not attuned to what counts.. COMMUNICATION!!!

Oh, and don’t forget to deduct points for FACE-MAKING! I must confess, to working on my Beethoven Pianos blog yesterday while listening to Alessandro–no image this time, and his playing soared well beyond any camera angle rendered at RING-side.

I can’t fathom in my wildest imagination why Deljavan was cut–sorry to be blunt—but I know he WILL move on to a great career regardless–same for Claire Huangci because they CONNECT with listeners and bring emotional depth to the competition, defying the NORM….

It’s been further emphasized that too many Gold winners at Cliburn have not progressed to major careers, so maybe this is a good omen for Alessandro and Claire (They join the Cliburn reject circle along with Evgeni Bozhanov who is thankfully out of the competition loop, serenading appreciative audiences world-wide)


Now for a serving of Deljavan who is uncannily a celebrated CHEF, cooking for everyone on the Cliburn set. You gotta love him.

Incidentally, if anything is predictable in this competition cosmos, I’ll hedge my bets that Alessandro will land the AUDIENCE FAVORITE award (so I’m off to cast my vote!)

An off the cuff interview with Alessandro


Official Website: Alessandro Deljavan

About arioso7: Shirley Kirsten

International piano teacher by Skype, recording artist, composer, piano finder, freelance writer, film maker, story teller: Grad of the NYC HS of Performing Arts, Oberlin Conservatory, NYU (Master of Arts) Studies with Lillian Freundlich and Ena Bronstein; Master classes with Murray Perahia and Oxana Yablonskaya. Studios in BERKELEY and EL CERRITO, California; Member, Music Teachers Assoc. of California, MTAC; Distance learning and Skyped instruction with supplementary videos: SKYPE ID, shirleypiano1 Contact me at: OR or at FACEBOOK: Shirley Smith Kirsten, /shirley.kirsten TWITTER: Private fund-raising for non-profits as pianist--Public Speaking re: piano teaching and creative approaches
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6 Responses to Alessandro Deljavan is a Cliburn winner for me!

  1. Thanks for the heads up on this amazing muso. So good to see a pianist really physically, psychologically and emotionally feeling the music. Such a shame they have diced him out of the comp. I cannot believe that Mozart would not have been absolutely delighted at this performance.


  2. Yes, what a shame that he is missing from the finals. But I will bet he will get the Audience Favorite award, and for me, that’s what counts.. COMMUNICATION all the way!!!!


  3. Kevin says:

    Interesting article about Deljavan and his VCC experiences. Those of us who are in awe of his artistry are many and certainly not in the minority.


  4. Pingback: Alessandro Deljavan is a uniquely gifted pianist | Arioso7's Blog (Shirley Kirsten)

  5. Pingback: Alessandro Deljavan is a uniquely gifted pianist – Burning Bushes Music

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