RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – It’s official! The City of Richmond has won the bid to host the international music festival known as the Menuhin Competition in 2020.
The official announcement was made Sunday in Geneva at this year’s competition.
“It’s fantastic.” says James Wiznerowizc the VCU Music Interim Chair. “This is all that we hoped for. This is the greatest moment that we are going to have in the next 5 years.” Wiznerowizc was in Geneva for the announcement.
The competition is considered the Olympics of the violin. It is the world’s leading competition for young violinists and it attracts thousands from around the world.
John Felton, Vice President and General Manager at WCVE, which will televise the event worldwide says, “It is an amazing victory for Richmond.”
Ronald Crutcher, President of the University of Richmond has attended the competition. He says, “You’re just blown away with their poise, their artistry.”
That talent is coming here to Richmond May 14 through May 24 of 2020.
RVA beat out London and Melbourne for the bid.
The only other North American city to ever host the event was Austin, Texas.
David Fisk, the Executive Director of the Richmond Symphony says, “it will start with the Carpenter Theatre and the opening gala happens here.”
Fisk explains the 10-day competition is sort of like a festival with on-going educational events and performances.
“It involves the whole city,” he says.
The young artists will give concerts and talks to city school kids.
“They’re going into schools, churches, perhaps into hospitals,” explains Crutcher.
The competition will be spread out between the Carpenter Theatre and the campuses of VCU and the University of Richmond.
“One of the ideas for the Menuhin competition, when they go into the city, is to engage as many parts of the community in the competition,” says Crutcher.
With the event televised worldwide, organizations say it’s a great way to showcase all that Richmond has to offer.
“The eyes of the world will be on Richmond Virginia for those 10 days,” says Crutcher.
It may be two years away but the work to fundraise and get the city, venues and housing for the competitors ready, starts now.
It will cost about $1.5 Million to $2 Million dollars to put on the event.
“Now the serious the planning starts,” says Fisk.