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Jury 2014

Tori Stødle

Tori Stødle, professor of piano at the Music Conservatory, Faculty of Art, Tromsø University and Artistic Director of Top of the World International Piano Competition. Tori has given masterclasses and concerts in USA, Russia and several other European countries. In New York she has given lecture-recitals at The Juilliard and Manhattan Schools of Music. She has world premiered Norwegian works dedicated to her and produced several CDs. Tori Stødle has received numerous grants and prizes. She studied with Robert Riefling Oslo, Jùrgen Uhde Stuttgart and the legendary Adele Marcus in New York. After her New York - debut in 1990 at Carnegie Hall, James R. Ostreich in New York Times wrote "She is a suberbly refined miniaturist, able to create little worlds of colour and poetry with exquisite shading of dynamics and shaping of phrases". She is an appointed Steinway artist and is by the World Piano Teachers Association bestowed the Title of Honorary President for Norway. His Majesty the King of Norway has appointed her to Knight, First Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav for her contributions to the Norwegian cultural scene. She is Artistic Director of Top of the World International Piano Competition which received in 2011 WPTA Diploma of Excellence permanently accredited.


Justas already flourished into a skillful performer with his own musical identity at the age of eleven when he represented his country at the "Virtuosi per Musica di Pianoforte" International Piano Competition in Czechoslovakia. From this event Justas returned home as triumphant Laureate. His extraordinary and growing abilities eventually lead him to the Moscow P.Tchaikovsky Conservatoire for graduate and post-graduate studies, both of which he completed with highest honours (studying under Prof. Lev Vlassenko and Mikhail Pletnev). After the initial five years of study, Justas' professor, Lev Vlassenko, found that his young student's "natural talent had bloomed and he had become undoubtedly an accomplished artist." Justas' pianistic and musical abilities were enhanced through his acquaintances pianist Sviatoslav Richter and Elisso Wirssaladse.Justas' early career continued successfully. During his final years of study he won the Italian "Viotti" International Piano Competition in 1992. Justas also received special awards from both the Portuguese "Porto" International Piano Competition and the "International M.K. Čiurlionis" Piano Competition in Lithuania, meriting the respect of jury chairman Daniel Pollack: "Justas Dvarionas from Lithuania left me with one of the biggest impressions...[he] has unique interpretation." Justas has returned to Italy several times for successful solo performances at the Puccini Theatre in Merano, where he was hailed an enormous talent by local reviewers. Justas also has performed in solo, chamber music or with orchestras in Bulgaria, Canada, Germany, Russia, United States of America, Sweden, Norway, Czech Republic, Austria, Peru, England, Japan and more. Justas Dvarionas teaches talented young pianists at the M.K. Čiurlionis High School for the Arts. He has also held many Master Classes of his own in Germany, Poland, Norway, France, Russia, Japan, Peru, Great Britain, Greece, Lithuania and other countries. Justas Dvarionas is Vice-President (for international competitions) of EMCY (European Music Competitions for Youth), has served as jury member in many international competitions (like Gina Bachauer Piano Competition, USA; Aarhus International Piano Competition, Denmark; Liszt Junior Piano Competition, Germany; N.Rubinstein International Piano Competition, France; Pyabhang Sanitwongse Piano Competition, Thailand and others); he is also on the board of the Lithuanian Cultural Foundation, Lithuanian independence movement Sajūdis, citizens panel Santalka, as well as one of the founders of the Lithuanian Think Tank IDĖJŲŠALTINIS These days Justas teaches and plays concerts in Lithuania and abroad, is very active in countries and international cultural and musical life organizes and participates in jury in national and international competitions. His last engagements include concerts, teaching and jury activities in Europe, Asia, North and South America.


Dorian Leljak has won several international piano competitions (including the Rachmaninov Competition - Belgrade, Novi Sad Piano Competition) and been awarded numerous prizes, including a University of Novi Sad Merit Award, Yale University Mary Clapp Howell, Irving Gilmore and Parisot Prizes. He enjoys successful career worldwide as a pianist and has appeared in recital and with orchestras including the Windstrings Orchestra, Wyoming Symphony Orchestra, Yale Philharmonia Orchestra, Belgrade Philharmonics, Belgrade Radio- Television Orchestra, Voyvodina Philharmonics, Yale Repertory Orchestra, and many others. Dr. Leljak enjoys a successful career as a chamber musician, establishing collaborations with cellist Istvan Varga and Pianist Ninoslav Zivkovic. In 2002 he made his debuts in Carnegie Hall and Boston Philharmonia Dr. Leljak is Professor of Piano at the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad and also teaches at the Royal College of Music in London. His previous engagements include teaching at the Yale School of Music. He has studied with Arbo Valdma and with Boris Berman (DMA, Yale University). Dr. Leljak is Artistic Director of the International Isidor Bajic Piano Competition, President of the World Piano Teachers Association (WPTA) and the World Piano Conference (WPC), President of the European Piano Teachers Association (EPTA) Voyvodina, Executive Director of the Panopticum Musicum/Musica Ricercata/Omnibus Musicus International Music Schools, as well as Southeast Europe Representative for the ABRSM (London). Dr. Leljak is a member of the jury at many international piano competitions including the Cleveland International Piano Competition (USA), Rome International Piano Competition (Italy), Neue Sterne (Germany), International Piano Competition in Namur/Waterloo (Belgium), Chopin Mazovia Piano Competition (Poland), Top of the World Piano Competition Tromsø (Norway), and EWON Cheonan Competition (Korea). He has given master classes and lectures around the world.


German born pianist Uta Weyand comes from a musical family. The Post and Courier (South Carolina, USA) forecasted her musical career, stating "Weyand demonstrates genius at the piano...she is a pianist of genius, who should have a long career. After her studies in Freiburg/Germany, Baltimore/USA and Madrid/Spain with Elza Kolodin, Vitaly Margulis, Leon Fleisher and Joaquín Soriano Uta Weyand has had great international success giving numerous piano recitals and appearing with orchestras in most European countries, in Russia, Brazil, Cuba and the United States. 1996 she won First Prize in the José Iturbi International Piano Competition in Valencia with two special prizes: one for the best interpretation of Spanish music and the other for Spanish contemporary music. Uta Weyand received worldwide press reviews with her recordings for Hänssler Classics with music by Schumann, Mozart, Debussy, Montsalvatge, Granados and the Complete Works for Piano Solo by Manuel de Falla. She combines her dynamic concert life with pedagogical activities giving master classes and conferences in Germany, Spain, Brazil and Cuba. Uta Weyand is regulary member of international piano competition juries such as Gina Bachauer in Salt Lake City, Franz Liszt in Weimar and José Iturbi in Valencia. Uta Weyand is the founder and managing director of the PIANALE International Academy & Competition for pianists between 9 and 30 years ( In addition to that, she is the initiator of an annually organized series of concerts Schlosskonzerte Osthessen in Germany, which provides young musicians with a high-standard performance platform.

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