CMIM – Piano 2024 | Jaeden Izik-Dzurko, first Canadian pianist ever to win

by Alexandre Villemaire

Jaeden Izik-Dzurko took top honors with his performance of Brahms’ Concerto no 2 in B flat major, delivered with profound musicality and coherence in both technique and vision of the work.

After eleven days of fierce competition, a packed Maison symphonique witnessed the conclusion of the Piano 2024 edition of the Concours musical international de Montréal on Thursday, May 16th.

Born in Salmon Arm, British Columbia, Jaeden Izik-Dzurko becomes the first Canadian to stand atop the podium of a piano edition of the CMIM.

He had previously distinguished himself in the competition by winning several special prizes, including Best Canadian Artist from the Fondation Bourbeau ($5,000). Worth a total of $140,000, the top prize includes a $50,000 Career Development Grant from the Azrieli Foundation, the Steinway Recording Prize (worth $54,000) from Steinway & Sons, as well as several concert engagements, including a Korean tour in March 2025 (Steinway Prizewinner Concerts), a concert or recital in a subsequent program of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, and a solo recital for the Coast Recital Society’s 2025-2026 season in British Columbia.

crédit photos: Tam Photography

Italy’s Gabriele Strata took 2nd prize, worth $15,000, and the ICI Musique Audience Prize, worth $5,000. Anthony Ratinov from the USA took 3rd prize, worth $10,000. The three unranked finalists, Elias Ackerley (UK; South Korea), Derek Wang (USA) and Jakub Kuszlik (Poland) each received a $3,000 bursary. Chaired by cultural manager Zarin Mehta (USA, India), the international jury comprised nine members: Dmitri Alexeev (Russia, UK), Lydia Artymiw (USA), Louise Bessette (Canada), Jan Jiracek von Arnim (Germany), Robert Levin (USA), Hélène Mercier (Canada), Ronan O’Hora (Great Britain, Ireland) and Minsoo Sohn (South Korea);

Finally, the recipients of the special awards are as follows: Jakub KUSZLIK (Poland), winner of the Prix du Jury de la relève; Élisabeth PION (Canada), winner of the Prix de l’engagement philanthropique Bita-Cattelan (offered in partnership with Bita and Paolo Cattelan); Gabriele STRATA (Italy), winner of the Prix Musique de chambre (offered in partnership with Dixi Lambert and the Festival de musique de chambre de Montréal); Jaeden IZIK-DZURKO (Canada), winner of the Prix André-Bachand for the best interpretation of a compulsory Canadian work (offered in partnership with Claudette Hould); Jaeden IZIK-DZURKO (Canada), winner of the Prix André-Bachand for the best interpretation of a sonata in the semi-finals (offered in partnership with Anne Stevens).

The next edition of the Concours musical international de Montréal will take place from May 25th to June 16th, 2025, and will be dedicated to the voice. A musical event to mark on your calendar without delay.

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