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Winners Announced at Honens International Piano Competition

Ukrainian pianist Illia Ovcharenko won first prize at this year's competition


As the Honens Prize Laureate, 21-year-old Illia Ovcharenko will receive $100,000 (CAD) plus a three-year Artist Development Program, which includes debut recitals, concert opportunities with leading orchestras, professional management, residencies, and recordings.

Americans Rachel Breen (age 26) and Sasha Kasman Laude (age 27), each received Finalist Prizes of $10,000 (CAD).

Additional prizes were awarded to Ádám Balogh for the Best Performance of a Commissioned Work, worth $2500 CAD. Angie Zhang won the Best Performance of a Beethoven Violin Sonata and the Audience Choice Award, both worth $2500 CAD.

The Competition jury for this 10th edition of Honens included Michel Béroff (France), Earl Blackburn (United States), Katherine Chi (Canada / United States), Imogen Cooper (United Kingdom), Stewart Goodyear (Canada), Ick-Choo Moon (Korea), and Orli Shaham (Israel / United States).

“The world is in the throes of change and while Honens continues to adapt as it moves forward in its mission, we are pleased to remain consistent and true in our search for the "Complete Artist”, says Neil Edwards, Honens’ President & CEO.

“Over the past two weeks, our jury and devoted audiences have experienced world-class pianism of the highest possible level,” said Jon Kimura Parker, Honens’ Artistic Director. “The Honens International Piano Competition has brought artistry, emotion, virtuosity, and creativity to Calgary and to the world. We offer our warmest congratulations to all of the pianists and special congratulations to the 2022 Honens Prize Laureate, Illia Ovcharenko.”

A recipient of the Presidential Scholarship of Ukraine, Illia Ovcharenko is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree at the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music in Tel Aviv under the tutelage of Arie Vardie.

He has already performed with leading orchestras including the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, Pomeranian Philharmonic Orchestra (Poland), National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, National Radio of Ukraine, and the Versailles Conservatory String Orchestra.

A recipient of the Polonsky Fellowship, his most recent achievements include the Second Prize at the Hilton Head International Piano Competition in 2022, Michelangeli Prize at the Eppan International Piano Academy, First Prize at the Horowitz International Piano Competition. A Laureate of the Busoni International Piano Competition, he has studied at the Aspen Music Festival (Colorado) with Yoheved Kaplinsky and Hung Kuan Chen.


Taking place every three years, the Honens International Piano Competition was created by Esther Honens, when she gave $5 million to endow an international piano competition in her hometown of Calgary, Canada. 

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