Horniman Early Keyboard Competition

28 April – 1 May 2020
The Horniman Museum and Gardens
100 London Rd, Forest Hill, London SE23 3PQ

Entries Have Now Closed.

Click Here for a list of Competitors for the Horniman Early Keyboard Competition 2020

Update: Additional prize money offered by piano-makers John Broadwood and Sons. Three enhanced cash prizes will now be awarded at the Horniman Early Keyboard Competition through the generosity of John Broadwood and Sons.

The awards will now be:

  • First Prize: £500
  • Runner-up: £200
  • Audience Choice: £100

This money is being donated to encourage young players, and in recognition of the long association of this Competition with the former Broadwood Trust.​ 

Maggie Cole
Marcia Hadjimarkos
Catalina Vicens

Entries are now open for the Horniman Early Keyboard Competition to be held from 28 April to 1 May 2020. The instruments to be used for the competition are the Adam Beyer square piano (1777) and Onofrio Guarracino virginals (1668).

The competition is open to performers who will be under the age of 36 on 1st May 2020. The two rounds will be held on consecutive days and up to five people will go forward to the second round. Awards will include a cash prize of £200, an audience prize and recitals at UK venues.

In addition to the two rounds of the competition, there will be special masterclasses and a Maestros’ concert by the three adjudicators.

Entry fee: £30. Entry includes free admission to the two masterclasses and Maestros’ concert. Nb: The masterclasses are now fully booked for playing participants. If you wish to be added to the waiting list, should a space become available, please contact Beatrice Booker at bbooker@horniman.ac.uk. Auditors are welcome.

How to enter: Fill in the Application Form with the required information. See repertoire list below.

A link to payment to secure your place in the competition will be provided once all information has been processed.

Places will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. We can accommodate up to 15 players. Early entry advised.

Competition Rules:

Conditions of performing
Due to the rarity, age and sensitive condition of the instruments, all performers must have had previous experience playing historic keyboards and must also be willing to attend in advance an introduction to the instruments with Mimi Waitzman, Deputy Keeper of Musical Instruments. This induction is required only once. Permission to play the instruments is at the sole discretion of the Horniman Museum.

Inductions will be held on Monday 27 April 2020 from 2 till 5 or by special arrangement further in advance. Contact Beatrice Booker to arrange an induction.

Masterclass Information
Nb: The masterclasses are now fully booked for playing participants. If you wish to be added to the waiting list, should a space become available, please contact Beatrice Booker at bbooker@horniman.ac.uk. Auditors are welcome.

Masterclasses will take place on two afternoons. On 28 April Marcia Hadjimarkos will give the early piano class; and on 29 April Catalina Vicens will give the virginals class. Any competitor wishing to participate in one or both of the masterclass(es) must, nevertheless, apply separately as players’ places will be limited. Players may not perform their competition repertoire for the masterclass(es). Places will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. 


Guarracino Virginals (1668) and Beyer Square Piano (1777)

Instruments’ Technical Specifications

Guarracino Virginals (1668). Photo Sarah Duncan.
© Horniman Museum and Gardens
Beyer Square Piano (1777). Photo Sarah Duncan.
© Horniman Museum and Gardens

Performers will be required to perform from a list of repertoire as follows:

Thursday 30 April
Round One 15 minutes of music

Virginals 7 to 8 minutes of music made up of selections from the following:
JJ Froberger: a toccata plus a suite from the first book (1649).
G Frescobaldi: a toccata from the first book (edition of 1637 (1st edition 1615)) plus a balletto, corrente and ciaccona or passacaglia.
Alessandro Scarlatti: any toccata plus various compositions 

Square piano 7 to 8 minutes of music made up of selections from the following:
JC Bach: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.
Domenico Scarlatti: a pair of contrasting sonatas.
Maria Hester Park: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.

Friday 1 May
Round Two 25 minutes of music

Virginals 12 to 13 minutes of music made up of selections from the following:
Any toccata, canzona or ricercare by GM Trabaci or M Rossi.
G Frescobaldi: a set of Partite.
G Frescobaldi: a toccata from the second book (1637).
JJ Froberger: a capriccio or ricercar from 1656 or 1658, plus a suite from the book of 1656.

Square piano 12 to 13 minutes of music from the following:
J Haydn: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.
WA Mozart: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.
JL Dussek: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.
Marianna von Martinez: a sonata including at least two contrasting movements.


Maggie Cole

Maggie Cole – Photo by SebGeo

American born, Maggie Cole enjoys an international musical life playing and recording on harpsichord, fortepiano and modern piano. Resident in England, she is best known through numerous recitals on BBC Radio 3 and appearances at leading British festivals. Abroad, she has performed in venues from Seattle to Moscow, and from Finland to India. In addition to a busy solo career, she enjoys duo partnerships with Michael Chance counter tenor, Nancy Argenta and Julia Gooding sopranos, Philippa Davies flute, Steven Isserlis cello and Catherine Mackintosh violin. She also performs regularly with Trio Goya, her fortepiano trio with Kati Debretzeni and Sebastian Comberti, the Nash Ensemble, Britten Sinfonia and her Cambridge USA – based group The Sarasa Chamber Ensemble. With Sarasa she has been able to extend her love of teaching to the development of a program which brings music, improvisation and poetry into facilities for youth offenders.

Maggie’s recordings on harpsichord include Bach’s Goldberg Variations, Soler Keyboard Sonatas, Poulenc’s Concert Champêtre, Boccherini Sonatas with Steven Isserlis, Bach flute sonatas with Philippa Davies and the complete Bach violin sonatas with Catherine Mackintosh. On fortepiano, her CD of Haydn trios with Trio Goya will be followed soon by a recording of the Opus 1 Beethoven trios. On modern piano, Maggie has recently released a CD of music by Philippe Gaubert with flautist, Idit Shemer.

Maggie is professor of fortepiano at Guildhall School of Music and Drama and teaches early keyboards at Dartington International Summer School.

Website: http://www.johnfirth.net/maggie/ 

Marcia Hadjimarkos

Marcia Hadjimarkos performs, teaches, and records on a variety of keyboard instruments from the Cristofori piano to its modern counterpart, with particular interest in the clavichord, square piano, and the 18th-century piano. Recent projects include a recording of minimalist music on an 1887 Steinway and a toy piano programme with recorder player Michael Copley. Marcia has co-created programs such as ‘The Intimate Mozart’ (based on the Mozart family letters) with Gabriel Woolf and Philippe Borrini, and ‘Entre Deux Feux’ (commemorating the popular and art songs of World War I) with Marie Fraschina. She gave an 8-recital performance of the complete Haydn sonatas on several early keyboards, and has had the pleasure of collaborating with Emma Kirkby, Julianne Baird, Jean-Paul Fouchécourt, and Beth Taylor. Her performances are described as “imaginatively realized, full-blooded, and loving”, “brilliantly intelligent”, and “dynamic, free, and powerfully shaped”. She has performed at the International Piano Festival at La Roque d’Anthéron, La Folle Journée de Nantes, the Sablé Festival, the National Music Museum, Rencontres international harmoniques, the Nordic Historical Keyboard Festival, the Russell Collection, the Cobbe Collection. Her recordings of Mozart Sonatas and Rondos, Haydn Sonatas, Character Pieces by C.P.E. Bach Haydn songs & cantatas with Emma Kirkby, Viennese music with Hugo Reyne (czakan), and Schubert Dances and Sonata have been enthusiastically received, and won awards including a Diapason d’Or.

Website https://www.marcia-hadjimarkos.com/en/ 

Catalina Vicens

Award-winning musician, Catalina Vicens, a native of Chile and now resident in Basel, Switzerland, started her international career at an early age. By age 20 she had already played in the main concert-halls of more than ten countries in North and South America, including the Teatro Colón de Buenos Aires Argentina,  the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and the Teatro Municipal do São Paulo. 

Catalina studied harpsichord with Lionel Party (Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia), Robert Hill (Musikhochschule Freiburg) and Andrea Marcon  and Jesper Christensen (Schola Cantorum Basiliensis). She later specialized in medieval music with Corina Marti, obtaining a Master’s degree in Medieval Keyboard Instruments (an international first), and in Contemporary Music Performance (with historical keyboards) at the Musik Akademie Basel. During her graduate studies, she undertook individual research on the harpsichord and organ literature from Renaissance Italy, England and Switzerland, which led her to commence recently a PhD degree at the Orpheus Institute, Ghent, Belgium and the Leiden University, The Netherlands. She has also been invited to give several courses and master-classes and to be part of the jury at international competitions.

Vicens performs and records regularly as member of ensembles of Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and New music in Europe, USA and South America. She is artistic director of Servir Antico, with whom she aims to recover the less-known repertoire and intellectual heritage of the humanistic period (13th-16th century). As an orchestra member she has performed under the direction of well-known conductors such as, Otto-Werner Müller, Gottfried von der Goltz, Andrea Marcon, Skip Sempé and Carlos Miguel Prieto. Besides her busy performing career, Catalina holds a position as organist in Switzerland.

Website https://www.catalinavicens.com/