For more than two decades, the European Piano Contest Bremen has been offering the opportunity to present themselves to an esteemed jury and an interested audience to young pianists. In 2012, the competition will be held between 26th February and 7th March, inviting contestants from all over Europe including former CIS states, Turkey and Israel. The laureates will not only be expecting well endowed prizes but also numerous opportunities to
perform outside of Bremen. Additionally, there will be a CD production with the Bremen Philharmonic Orchestra which is the orchestra in residence of the competition.

In autumn of 1987, the first competition was conducted together with Radio Bremen, and, as the competition of the year 1989, it was only open to German pianists aged 16-30. It was held on a national level. But already in 1990, the three partners Landesmusikrat Bremen e.V., Radio Bremen and the Sparkasse Bremen decided to open the competition to musicians from Europe and Turkey as well as Israel. Therewith, the European unification in the areas of arts and youth encounter and exchange should be fostered.
Hence since then, the competition has always been under the patronage of the current foreign minister, including Hans Dietrich Genscher, Klaus Kinkel, Joschka Fischer and Frank Walter Steinmeier. At the moment Guide Westerwelle is the patron of the European Piano Competition Bremen.

Friends and Supporters

In 1991, an honorary committee was founded in order to appreciate the commitment of friends and supporters. The circle of supporters currently consists of about 50 dedicated people from Bremen and elsewhere as well as cultural and economic institutions.
The chair is held by Dr Tim Nesemann, member of the board of directors of the Sparkasse Bremen. In 2012, there will be a prize dedicated to having supported thecompetition which will be awarded among the circle of supporters and friends.


In the following years, important partners joined:
In 1999, the Glocke Veranstaltungs-GmbH and in 2005 the Bremen Philharmonic Orchestra. In the year 2007, the Jugendherbergswerk became a partner and in 2010, the Sendesaal Bremen joined forces with the others.

High Standard

Due to the high artistic requirements and the esteemed jury, the competition has gained a reputable position among international competitions. Also, part of the competition is a commissioned work for solo piano which will be premiered at the semi final and thus incoperates elements of contemporary music. The audience prize which is kindly endowed by the Weser Kurier newspaper lets the public take an important part in the events of the competition and renders individual voting possible.


The meeting of young artists is, however, much more than a competition. The pianists will rehearse, and live together in the youth hostel Bremen, which will let emerge a lively exchange. Thus the Piano competition Bremen is a forum of intercultural and artistic dialogue across the borders of nations, languages or cultural backgrounds.

Youth Hostel Bremen