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The Jury decision followed a short interlude during which audience and competitors could enjoy a relaxed ambience and refreshments. Malcolm Troup, BPSE UK Chairman, introduced the Jury and underlined the special occasion of the 15th Anniversary of the Society, recalling the notable achievements of some past prize winners, including those who, like Ashley Wass, have risen to international attention.

Three prize winners and the jury. from left to right, Murray McLachlan, Jiovanni de Pedro, Alexander Kanchavely, Steven Savage, Jayson Gillham and Dejan Sinadinovic. Photo © 2007 F Clarey
Three prize winners and the jury. from left to right, Murray McLachlan, Jiovanni de Pedro, Alexander Kanchavely, Steven Savage, Jayson Gillham and Dejan Sinadinovic. Photo © 2007 F Clarey

Murray McLachlan, spokesman for the Jury, underlined that their choice had been unanimous, and announced the winners in reverse order: in third place was Alexander Kanchavely (RSAM), in second place Jovanni De Pedro (Trinity College of Music) and this year's winner was Jayson Gillham (RAM). It was a choice that evidently was shared by most of the assembled company, for Gillham was also recipient of the Audience Prize, voted by all who had attended the entire competition. No doubt there were varying opinions amongst those attending about the relative merits of the participants, especially the impressive performances by Di Xiao and Omri Epstein, but recalling Murray McLachlan's comments earlier on, competitions need to be considered in perspective, as litmus tests rather than absolute markers, and one hopes to hear more about the progress of all the promising pianists in future. The ceremony concluded with the presentation of the Beethoven Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians, by their Master, Leslie East. All participants received the latest issue of the BPSE journal Arietta, while all three prize winners received cash awards, as well as prize winner recitals in the 2008 BPSE season, details of which will be announced on the BPSE website in the near future.

Copyright © 5 December 2007 Malcolm Miller, London UK

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