The Cliburn




  • July 15–31, 2014                    Video Submissions
  • August 1–15, 2014                 Viewing and voting
  • August 19, 2014                      Winner announced


  • Applicants must be age 35 or over by July 31, 2014 in order to participate.
  • Previous first-prize winners of the International Piano Competition for Outstanding AmateursTM and the Cliburn Amateur Piano Video Contest (formerly YouTube contest) are not eligible.
  • Applicants should be those who play piano for pleasure and dedication to the instrument and its repertoire. They may not perform, teach, or compose piano music primarily for professional pursuits or financial benefit. All decisions of eligibility by the Cliburn are final.


  • All applicants must complete an application form and upload a performance video through the contest portal.
  • The video must be filmed with both the pianist’s face and hands in the frame at all times.
  • Only one video per applicant will be accepted.
  • Video content must not have been submitted to another contest or filmed more than six months prior to submission.


  • Performance videos must be a minimum duration of 5 minutes and a maximum duration of 10 minutes.
  • Applicants may perform any work or works written for solo piano by a classical composer of any era, including contemporary music, as long as the time limits defined above are met.
    • If an applicant also composes music in a classical style, s/he may include one such work, but at least 50% of the repertoire must be written by another composer.
    • Broadway show tunes, movie music, jazz, folk, and other forms of popular music generally will not be eligible for consideration.
  • Pieces must be played in their entirety, although repeats may be omitted. Movements of larger works are allowed but must be played in their entirety.
  • Works do not have to be memorized
  • All decisions about repertoire eligibility by the Cliburn are final.


  • The winner will be determined by the number of public votes received online.
  • Individuals may vote for each video once per day.


The winner will be awarded automatic entry into the seventh International Competition for Outstanding Amateurs in 2016.


  • The Cliburn reserves to right to disqualify or exclude any individual from the contest for any reason whatsoever, including tampering with the voting process or violating any rules.
  • The Cliburn reserves to right to use all videos for any purposes on any platform and to use the names and/or likenesses of those who submit a video.
  • The Cliburn reserves to right to change the rules and procedures of the Amateur Piano Video Contest at its discretion. All dates are subject To change.

The Cliburn’s definition of an “amateur” is one who plays the piano as a serious pastime—sometimes having had to make the difficult choice between their profession and their potential career as a concert artist. Many past participants in our programs for amateurs have, at one time in their lives, received advanced piano degrees; others have never studied the piano professionally. Amateur Competition prizes have been awarded both to those with extensive public performing experience, as well as to those who have spent many hours playing mostly for their own enjoyment or for the pleasure of friends, family, and their local communities. All, however, are united by their love of classical music-making and sharing this passion with others of like mind.

Our Mission

It is the mission of the Cliburn to advance classical piano music throughout the world. Its international competitions, education programs, and concert series embody an enduring commitment to artistic excellence and the discovery of young artists.



The Cliburn is a not-for-profit organization governed by a board of directors, elected for a four year term. It is sustained by the generous support from individuals, foundations, corporations, the tireless efforts of volunteers, and embraced by the community of Fort Worth. The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition is a proud member of the World Federation of International Music Competitions.


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