1. The 44th Polish National Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition, organised by the Fryderyk Chopin Institute, will be held in Warsaw from 24th November to 2nd December 2012.

2. Contestants will perform in three stages and their performances will be open to the public. The finalists (Stage III) will be accompanied by a symphony orchestra.


The Competition is open to pianists born between 1982–1995 who are Polish nationals.


1. Candidates wishing to enter the Competition are required to e-mail the application form (konkurs@nifc.pl) by 6th November 2012 or mail it to Narodowy Instytut Fryderyka Chopina, Biuro Konkursów, ul. Tamka 43
00-355 Warszawa, postmarked before or on the above-mentioned date.

Documents to be attached with the application will include:

a) copy of document bearing the applicant’s date of birth
b) short biographical note
c) reference from the music school / department head (for students) or a copy of the music school degree (for graduates)
d) document certifying that a foreign national is studying / has studied at a Polish musical university (for foreigners)
e) record of entrance fee payment

The entrance fee of 200 PLN should be paid into the bank account no. 84 1750 0009 0000 0000 0627 9139, indicating the Institute’s name and address (Narodowy Instytut Fryderyka Chopina, Biuro Konkursów, ul. Tamka 43, 00-355 Warszawa), the applicant’s name and purpose of payment.

2. Applications sent after 6th November 2011 will not be accepted.

3. Applicants will be notified by phone or e-mail of their acceptance no later than on 15 November 2011. During the week preceding the start of the Competition the Competition Office will notify the successful applicants of the date and time of their first performance.

4. In the event of the applicant’s resignation the entrance fee will not be refunded.


1. Participants are required to register with the Competition Office at the set date.
2. Participants qualified to the 2nd stage will be guaranteed refund of accomodation costs in Warsaw during the competition up to 150 PLN based on shown invoices.


1. Contestants will appear in the alphabetical order of their names, beginning with the drawn letter. This order will basically be followed throughout the Competition.

2. In principle not more than fifteen participants will be passed into the second stage and not more than eight into the Final.

3. For organisation and programme related reasons the Competition Office will have the right to change the sequence of performances.


The Competition Programme will include the following works to be played from memory:

Stage I

  • A sonata by Muzio Clementi or Joseph Haydn
  • One of the nocturnes by Fryderyk Chopin
  • Three etudes, one from each group:
    1. Fryderyk Chopin – freely chosen etude, excluding: E major, Op.10 No.3, E flat minor, Op.10 No.6 and C sharp minor, Op.25 No.7
    2. An etude by Claude Debussy
    3. An etude of participant’s own choosing
  • Any composition of the participant’s own choosing

Total performing time: 30-35 minutes.

(The participant can decide not to play the last, chosen piece if the time of all other pieces exceedes total time of 30 minutes.)

Stage II

  • Fryderyk Chopin – participant's own choosing from the given list:
    - Ballade in G minor, Op. 23
    - Ballade in F major, Op. 38
    - Ballade in A flat major, Op. 47
    - Ballade in F minor, Op. 47
    - Barcarolle in F sharp major, Op. 60
    - Fantasie in F minor, Op. 49
    - Rondo in C minor, Op. 1
    - Rondo a la Mazur, Op. 16
    - Rondo in E flat major, Op. 16
    - Scherzo in B minor, op. 20
    - Scherzo in B flat minor, Op. 31
    - Scherzo in C sharp minor, Op. 39
    - Scherzo in E major, Op. 54
    - Andante spianato and Polonaise in E major, Op. 22
    - Polonaise in F sharp minor, Op. 44
    - Polonaise in A flat major, Op. 53
    - Polonaise-Fantasie in A flat major, Op. 61
  • Claude Debussy's cyclic piece of the participant's own choosing or 4 to 6 preludes by Debussy, or one of sonatas by Alexander Skriabin (excluding Sonata No. 1 in F minor, Op. 6 and Sonata No. 3 in F sharp minor, Op. 23)
  • A composition or compositions of the participant's own choosing

Works performed in stage II must be other than those played in stage I.
Total performing time: 45–55 minutes.

Stage III

A piano concerto chosen from the following:

Fryderyk Chopin:

  • I Piano Concerto in E minor, Op. 11
  • II Piano Concerto in F minor, Op. 21

Ludwig van Beethoven:

  • Piano Concerto No. III in C minor, Op. 37
  • Piano Concerto No. IV in G major, Op. 58
  • Piano Concerto No. V in E flat major, Op. 73

Applicants are requested to indicate in the application form the exact time of performing each piece.

The pieces may be performed in any order, except the obligatory etudes (stage I points 2 & 3), which have to be played one after the other.


1. The Institute Director will appoint the Chairman and all Members of the Jury. Shuld it prove necessary, the Director may change the composition of the Jury.

2. The names of the Jurors will be made public.

3. The Jury will evaluate the participants' performances in accordance with the rules approved by the Institute Director.


1. During the Competition the Fryderyk Chopin Institute will make available practice pianos for all contestants.

2. Contestants will have the opportunity to test-play the grand pianos in the Musical University’s halls. In the week preceding the start of the Competition each contestant will receive the date and time of test-playing, and the timetable for practising on other pianos.

3. Contestants passed into the Final will have two rehearsals with the orchestra at the set dates and times.


1. The Jury will submit the list of prize winners to the Institute Director for approval.

2. The following prizes will be awarded:

  • 1st prize 20 000 PLN
  • 2nd prize 18 000 PLN
  • 3rd prize 16 000 PLN
  • 4th prize 13 000 PLN
  • 5th prize 10 000 PLN
  • 6th prize 7 000 PLN
  • Special prize of 3 000 PLN for the best performance of a solo piece by Chopin
  • Special prize of 3 000 PLN for the best performance of a piece by Claude Debussy
  • Special prize of 3 000 PLN for the best performance of a piece by Alexander Skriabin
  • Special prize of 3 000 PLN for the best performance of a concerto.

The laureates will also qualify for the concert-and-promotion programme run by the Fryderyk Chopin Institute.

3. The list of prize winners, including the awarded prizes, will be made public.


1. The Jury will have the right to change by a 2/3 majority the prize category, with the proviso that individual cash prizes will be neither lower nor higher than those specified in the Rules, and the total sum allocated for prizes will not be increased.

2. All decisions made by the Jury will be final and incontestable.


1. All prize-winners will appear free-of-charge in the prize-winners' concert closing the Competition. The concert will be held on 3 December 2011 in the Musical University's Concert Hall. An unexcused absence from the above-mentioned concert will be tantamount to giving up the prize money.

2. The programme of the prize-winners' concert will be established by the Jury Chairman in consultation with the performers.


1. All participants are required to grant the Institute free-of-charge permission to use their artistic performances and to have them at the Institute's disposal on the areas of exploatations as follows:

- preservation and multiplexing: production of copies of the performances with the use of optional technology: magnetic or digital.

- dissamination: broacasting, re-broadcasting and public playing and making available the recordings of the performances in such a way that everyone can have access to them in individually chosen place and time


The Director of the Institute will make all decisions on organisation-related matters exceeding the powers of the Jury. His decisions will be final and incontestable.