12 Oct 2017 - 8:35
Over 700 to compete in first-ever search for best musical talent in Qatar
By Raynald C Rivera | The Peninsula
More than 700 young aspiring musicians are all set for the first-ever Qatar National Music Competition (QNMC) — a nationwide search for the best of Qatar’s musical talent, which will kick off on Sunday at Katara Drama Theatre.
Organised by Qatar-based non-profit foundation Moving Young Artists (MYA), the five-day event was launched “to inspire a deep love and knowledge of music in the Qatari community.”
Under the patronage of Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Science (NatCom), the competition seeks to create a platform that encourages the best in music creativity and performance in Qatar.
The competition was launched in May and was opened to those below 18 years old with a flair for music including playing piano, winds, strings, percussion/harp/guitar, as well as vocal and composition encompassing Arabic and Western music.
“The response has been overwhelming. Despite the fact that it coincided with three months of summer holiday when some people were away, we have hundreds of candidates who are going to perform from Sunday to Thursday, which I find an amazing result,” Sonja Park, co-founder, told The Peninsula.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday at Marsa Malaz Kempinski, Park said the much anticipated competition is expected to be an incredible celebration of music with many talents vying for numerous awards at stake.
There will be a total of 68 prizes, 18 ambassadors awards as well as a number of special awards to be given by various companies and institutions, she said.
Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals, and a diploma will be awarded in each category and all participants will receive a certificate of merit for their performance. The Vodafone Grand Prize, reserved for the standout performance in the entire competition, provided by Vodafone, and a special ‘Qatar’s Best Award’ for best performance by a Qatari artist, provided by the Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Science, are among the most coveted.
The winner in Concerto category will receive the honour to perform as a soloist with Qatar Philharmonic Orchesrtra, while some selected prize winners will be able to record in state-of-the-art Katara Studios.
Other lucky ones will get to perform at esteemed stages such as the British Festival, the Sheikh Faisal Museum, and at concerts in Qatar Museums venues.
Abdullah Al Kubaisi, Head of Arabic and Islamic Affairs at Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Science, said, “We aim to encourage creativity and competition among the youth to discover the best musical talents that can represent Qatar on the global stage. I extend my thanks to Katara and Sonja Park and all the teams who are contributing to this competition.”
The competition is chiefly sponsored by Vodafone Qatar and in collaboration with Katara, the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra and Marsa Malaz Kempinski.
Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah Al Thani, Chief Operating Officer, Vodafone Qatar said, “Vodafone around the world has a rich history of supporting music competitions that give talented individuals a platform for creativity so we are proud to sponsor the QNMC. The competition will undoubtedly grow to become one of the most important global music competitions attracting impressive talent locally and from around the world.”
The diplomatic missions supporting the QNMC are the embassies of South Korea, Belgium, Sweden, the UK, Austria, India, Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Hungary, France, Russia, Singapore, and initiatives such as the Spanish Business Council, Hungary’s V4 Connects, and Institut Francais Qatar.
Audience tickets for the competition classes are free, and are available on a first come, first served basis at door. Timings for the competition schedule can be viewed at www.qnmc.org. Tickets for the Gala Concert and Awards Cermony will be limited to those receiving prizes and performing on the evening.