Italian Vikram Sedona won the second prize of the violin section of this year’s edition of the George Enescu International Competition, while another Italian, Giuseppe Gibboni, took home the third prize.
The first prize was not awarded by decision of the president of the jury, Pierre Amoyal.
Sedona, who is 18 years old, is a student at the University of Performing Arts in Graz. He also won the first prize at the “Andrea Postacchini” International Violin Competition in 2017. He previously performed in Italy, Austria, Malta, Switzerland, Germany, Poland, Russia and France.
The 17-year-old Gibboni is known as the “Italian miracle” as he participated in the “Prodigies – Music is Life” Program of RAI 1 television. He won first prizes at the “L. Kogan” International Violin Competition in Brussels and “A. Postacchini” International Violin Competition, as well as the first prize and special prize for the execution of the Paganini Caprices in 2016.
The violin section had a third finalist, Ukrainian Orest Smovzh, who was given a special award consisting in a series of masterclasses. He is a Peabody Institute student and a graduate of the Tchaikovsky National Music Academy of Ukraine and the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music in Singapore. He is the winner of the “Tadeusz Wroński” Violin Solo Competition in 2015.
Amoyal, who is currently teaching at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, explained that aside from the finalists, 48 other talented contestants had been part of the competition, and all of them had shown great potential. "The jury president considered he had the responsibility to maintain this balance in relation to all contestants, so he decided that the first prize would not be awarded at this edition," the festival announced.
“The president of the jury has the supreme authority and he wished to highlight the fact that, aside from an exceptional gift, more persistence is still needed to valorize talent. Musicians are made throughout their lives, and the decision he made tonight will bring home this message for all contestants,” Mihai Constantinescu, the director of the George Enescu International Competition and Festival, said.
The jury of the Violin Section was made up of Pierre Amoyal, Salvatore Accardo, Agustin Leon Ara, Remus Azoiței, Silvia Marcovici, Eduard Schmieder, Viktor Tretyakov, Pavel Vernikov, and Krzysztof Wegrzyn.
(Left to Right in opening photo: Vikram Sidona, Giuseppe Gibboni, Orest Smovzh; photo source: George Enescu Festival Facebook Page)