Arthur Fraser Piano Competition

Arthur Fraser Piano Competition is sponsored by the Symphony League of the South Carolina Philharmonic.

Sponsored by Rice Music House-Steinway Pianos

Sponsored by Alan and Charlotte Kahn

Sponsored by Robert and Lisa Wilcox, in memory of Madge Palmer

First Prize Winner will perform a complete concerto with the South Carolina Philharmonic in Masterworks concert series during the 2025/2026 season. Second and Third Prize Winners will have opportunities to perform with the SC Philharmonic and SC Youth Orchestra at the discretion of the SC Philharmonic Music Director. Other engagement opportunities for all prizewinners are at the discretion of the Artistic Director of the Southeastern Piano Festival.

Award for the best performance of a contemporary work written since 1990: $500


Sponsored by Harriet Williams & Jerry Hagenmaier


USC SCHOOL OF MUSIC SCHOLARSHIPS: Contingent upon acceptance to the University and the School of Music, all competition prize-winners will be offered USC music scholarships.

Competition Jury

Inon Barnatan, Chair
Concert Pianist; Music Director of La Jolla Music Society Summerfest in California

Joseph Rackers
Concert Pianist; Steinway Artist; Professor of Piano, Eastman School of Music

Morihiko Nakahara
Music Director, South Carolina Philharmonic

Eunjung Choi
Concert Pianist; Professor of Music, Claflin University

Éva Polgár
Assistant Professor of Music, East Tennessee State University

Young Jury

To Be Announced

Symphony League of the South Carolina Philharmonic, founder and sponsor of the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition, is dedicated to fostering, promoting and increasing musical knowledge and appreciation of the performing arts in the community. Comprised of about 200 men and women, Symphony League members volunteer many hours to support the South Carolina Philharmonic, the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition and music education and appreciation in the Midlands. We invite you to join the Symphony League and to share in the work of the organization. No musical knowledge is necessary - just a desire to promote and support some of the most important cultural resources in our community.

Repertoire Requirements

All Southeastern Piano Festival participants will perform during the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition. Participants who wish to be considered for ALL prizes must perform the following:

  • a movement of a standard concerto for piano and orchestra (no slow movements, complete concerto in case of one movements works)
  • a work for solo piano contrasting in style and period (individual movements of larger works are allowed)

Participants who do not wish to perform a concerto may compete for the discretionary prizes, performing two solo piano works contrasting in styles and periods. Participants may declare a "non-competing" status, in which case they will play one or two solo piano work(s), will receive comments from the judges, but will not be considered for prizes.

All performances must be from memory. A contestant may be interrupted during the performance to accommodate the maximum allotted time of 18 minutes. All winners of the competition are required to participate in the winners' recital. All judges' decisions are final.

ELIGIBILITY: Contestants must be registered participants of the 2024 Southeastern Piano Festival. All prizewinners are required to participate in the Winners' Recital. Past winners of the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition who have performed with the South Carolina Philharmonic are not eligible to compete for the top three prizes; however, they are eligible to compete for all other awards. Contestants currently studying with members of the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition jury are not eligible for the competition but are still eligible to be participants in the Southeastern Piano Festival.

ACCOMPANIST: All contestants must use the official festival accompanist. We are pleased to announce that INĀRA ZANDMANE, a staff accompanist at University of North Carolina in Greensboro and official accompanist for the national finals of the MTNA competition, has joined the Southeastern Piano Festival, as the official accompanist for the Arthur Fraser Piano Competition.

More information:

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