The ZİHNİLATİF Turkish States Piano Competition, under the auspices of the ZİHNİLATİF Association, with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey and the Balıkesir Metropolitan Municipality, will take place in Balıkesir, Turkey, from December 11 to 14, 2023.

Candidates from all Turkish states and Hungary can apply to the competition. The accommodation expenses of participants in the competition will be covered by the Balıkesir Metropolitan Municipality. Travel and meal expenses will be the responsibility of the participants. All information in this document is accurate as of the publication date. However, the competition committee reserves the right to make changes if necessary.


The competition will be held in two different age categories:

A category: ages 14-17 B category: ages 18-27

Applicants in category A must have been born between December 14, 2005, and December 11, 2009. Applicants in category B must have been born between December 15, 1996, and December 11, 2005.

All applications must be filled out and submitted through the online system.

Online application address:

All applications must be submitted by 23:59 (UTC/GMT +3) on November 1 (Wednesday). Late or partial applications will not be accepted.

Applicants must deposit the competition participation fee of 1000₺ into the following IBAN number with the note “DONATION” along with their full name in the explanation section:


Applications must include the following uploads (applicable to both categories):

  • A video recording of a free program, not exceeding 10 minutes in length, to be uploaded as “private” on any YouTube channel for the jury’s evaluation. The video link will be used during the application process.
  • Identification document or passport
  • For promotional purposes, a color passport-sized photo and a high-resolution color photo (including a horizontal image) at 300 dpi or higher.

After the completed Application Form and attachments are received, a confirmation will be sent to each applicant. Incomplete information will not be accepted, and ZİHNİLATİF Association is not responsible for any applications that are not received.

All applications will be reviewed by the selection committee and kept confidential. ZİHNİLATİF Association reserves the right to request additional information from applicants or about applicants. Preliminary results will be communicated to all applicants by November 1, 2023.


All videos must be submitted through the online application system. The maximum length of the videos should not exceed 10 minutes.

The repertoire should consist of pieces selected by the contestant and should not include any of the pieces presented in the subsequent rounds of the competition.

Contestants can submit either a single video containing multiple pieces or separate videos for each piece.

All videos must be filmed with both the pianist’s face and hands in the frame at all times. The pieces on the video should be performed from start to finish in a single take, and no editing is allowed.


The competition consists of a preliminary round and two separate rounds: the 1st Round and the Final.

The order of appearance in the 1st Round and the Final will be determined based on rehearsal schedules, program content, and administrative requirements. All rounds of the competition will be open to the public.

A piano will be provided for the practice of participants throughout the event.

All rounds of the competition will be recorded for live or taped broadcasts, including video or audio recordings. Selected competition performances may be released as a CD and/or digital album, and the competition, including selected performances, may be used for a documentary, television, DVD/Blu-ray, online streaming, and/or other known or yet-to-be-invented platforms. Camera crews may record and photograph all competition events. Contestants must sign a release form giving ZİHNİLATİF Association, its agents, or licensees all rights to materials derived from their competition performances.

During the entire competition, pianists are not allowed to communicate or speak with any member of the jury. Violation of this rule may result in the disqualification of the pianist.


Competition Program

Category A (Ages 14-17)

Preliminary Round:

  • A video recording of a free program, not exceeding 10 minutes in length

1st Round (10-15 minutes):

  • One polyphonic piece
  • One virtuoso étude
  • One free-choice piece

Final (20-25 minutes):

  • A sonata from the Classical Period (or a fast movement if the full sonata cannot fit in the allotted time)
  • A piece from the Romantic Period
  • One free-choice piece

Category B (Ages 18-27)

Preliminary Round:

  • A video recording of a free program, not exceeding 10 minutes in length

1st Round (15-20 minutes):

  • One polyphonic piece
  • One virtuoso étude
  • A piece from the Classical Period (or a fast movement if the full piece cannot fit in the allotted time)

Final (30-40 minutes):

  • A free-choice program selected by the contestant (the program must consist of pieces that have not been performed in previous rounds)


Total performance times include applause and pauses.

If a pianist exceeds the given time limit, the jury reserves the right to stop the performance.

Repeats in pieces will not be played.

All pieces must be performed from memory.


The awards for the 1st ZİHNİLATİF Turkish States Piano Competition consist of the awards listed on the website. No other awards or payments will be allowed unless expressly approved by the ZİHNİLATİF Association. For Category A, the awards are as follows: 1st place (20,000 TL), 2nd place (10,000 TL), and 3rd place (5,000 TL). For Category B, the awards are as follows: 1st place (30,000 TL), 2nd place (20,000 TL), and 3rd place (10,000 TL). The awards will also be listed on the ZİHNİLATİF website and are subject to change at the discretion of ZİHNİLATİF.

If deemed necessary by the jury, awards may be divided among multiple recipients.

The first-place winners in both categories will be featured in a recital and orchestral concert event organized by the ZİHNİLATİF Association.

@2023 Zihnilatif Derneği