A. Ramon Rivera Piano Competition

A. Ramon Rivera Piano Competition

Click here to apply

2021 Competition Dates
Application Deadline: Sunday, March 21, 2021
Preliminary Round: Sunday, April 18, 2021
Finals Concert: Streamed on Sunday, April 25, 2021 at 2:30 PM

Finalists announced via email on April 18 at 6:00 PM EST.
Winners announced April 25 immediately following the streamed concert.

The A. Ramon Rivera Piano Competition was founded in 1990 to honor Mr. Rivera as an extraordinary and inspirational teacher. The competition reflects his uncompromisingly high standards for artistry in music and beauty of sound and is intended to encourage young pianists to continue their search for excellence.

Congratulations to the 2019 Winners:
Kyle Chen, 1st Prize, Open Division (student of Niva Fried)
Jane Hwang, 2nd Prize, Open Division (student of Pavel Nersessian)
Julius Arolovitch, co-winner, 1st Prize, Rivers Division (student of Ian Lindsey)
Theodore Teng, co-winner, 1st Prize, Rivers Division (student of A. Ramon Rivera)
Nathan Emans, Bach Prize (student of Sergey Schepkin)


The competition is open to pianists in grades 9 through 12.

The Rivers Division is open only to pianists studying piano at The Rivers School Conservatory; these students compete for scholarship prizes.
First place: $500
Second place: $250
All other finalists: $100

The Open Division is open to any pianist in grade 9 through 12; these students compete for cash prizes.
First place: $500
Second place: $250
All other finalists: $100

Competitors are only eligible to compete on one division and first prize winners are not eligible to compete in the same division for two consecutive years.

All finalists are eligible for the Bach Prize: $500

Applicants are required to submit the following:

  • A Prelude and Fugue by J.S. Bach from WTC Book I or II, plus a contrasting piece, not to exceed 15 minutes total
  • PDF of clean scores (unmarked, but with measure numbers)
  • Link to Unlisted YouTube videos (requirements below)

Video Requirements:

  1. At least 720p, preferably 1080p or higher
  2. One continuous take, unedited, Bach P&F and separate video of contrasting work
  3. Pianist’s face, hands, and feet must be visible and fill most of the screen
  4. Ensure the video has good quality audio and image
  5. Do not use special effects, dissolves, etc.
  6. Do not submit pre-recorded live performances
  7. Please wear concert attire
  8. Competitors bow when finished, as when performing in a recital

Deviations from the above requirements will be accepted and heard, but not considered for a prize.

Please follow the instructions below to create your unlisted YouTube video:

  1. Log into YouTube or create a free account
  2. Click the camera+ icon (top right corner) to upload a new video
  3. Title your video: Last Name, First Name, Open or Rivers Category
  4. Description: Composer, Title, Key, Opus # or BWV
  5. “Is this video made for kids?” select, “No, it’s not made for kids”
  6. Click “Unlisted” under the “Visibility” section and copy the link for your video to include in your application.
  7. Click “Save” (your video may take a while to process if it is a large, high-def file)

Previous First Prize Winners

Kyle Chen, Julius Arolovitch & Theodore Teng (2019)
Khoi Le (2018)
Ahana Mukhopadhyay (2017)
Evren Ozel (2016)
Niklas Kniesche (2015)
Victor Li & Alicia Juan (2014)
Christopher Staknys & Eric Lu (2013)
Nicholas Griffiths (2012)
Aaron Behr & Matthew Wu (2011)
Harry Li & Mackenzie Melemed (2010)
Evan Rees & Chi Wei Lo (2009)
Martin Falk & Ariel Borensztein (2008)
Roger Creel (2007)
Roger Creel & Katherine Peterson (2006)
Erli Veizaj & Yundu Wang (2005)
Sean Martinez, Luis F. Ortiz & Jessica Yam (2004)
Larry Weng & Yang Yang (2003)
Sang-Eun Hwang, Aaron Marcus &
Emi Okumura (2002)
Alexander Kossey (2001)
Eben Lichtman & Olga Parsegova (2000)
Ingrid Phoebe Keller & Alexander Kossey (1999)
Jessica Tai (1998)
Katherine Fisher (1996)
David Greco (1995)
Jocelyn Chapman (1994)
Drew Baker (1993)
Jonathan Jao (1992)
Kimberly Hamill (1991)