Boston, July 4, 2015, — Pianist George Li, a native of Lexington Mass., won Silver Medal at Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow a couple days ago. He wrote on Facebook today:”Congratulations USA! I dedicate my silver medal as your birthday gift!! Happy Birthday United States of America!!!” It must be a gift that George Li has planned to make for some time as his home is just a couple miles away from the Battle Green in Lexington Center where the first shots of American Revolution were fired on April 19, 1775.
The second place finish was a surprise to music critics and fans as George Li was clearly the best performer during three rounds of competition and the fan favorite. As of today, George Li was the leading vote-getter in the final round and received over 1655 votes while the first place winner Dmitry Masleev received only 1044 votes on an online poll setup by Tchaikovsky Competition. George Li was very gracious in acknowledging the difficulty in deciding the winner of the world-class piano competition in his letter to supporters below.
George Li’s Take on His Second Place Finish
I’ve received so many messages wishing me to be the first prize winner. For me, it doesn’t matter what prize I will receive from the competition. What’s important is that this competition have given me the great opportunity to make music for the entire world, and during this music-making process, I have given out everything I’ve had, and poured all the emotions, all the struggle, sheer joy, passion, tragedy, gratitude, and humility that I’ve felt in each of the pieces I’ve played and shared it with those who listened to me.
I was hoping my music can connect me with my audience, touch their souls, brighten up their lives, bring them happiness and make them feel the world is better for them. I feel like I accomplished that, so I’m satisfied! If I get first, great! But if I don’t, I will have no regret, because I know how hard it must be to decide a winner.
Music is a very hard subject to judge, because every person feels music differently. Since we have 9 or 10 different but extremely qualified jury members, we are in good hands – because they are the most authoritative giants in the piano/music world and I have the greatest respect to them. They all must have their own opinions on how music should sound and be. And since all six finalists are very capable pianists and musicians, I understand the difficulty of choosing a winner. Since I have accomplished my goals, I will take whatever decided by the honorable jury, go home and cerebrate!
After the month long competition, I have been wondering what would have happened if I did not have the supports from all my friends – I am very grateful to your support. I feel that I am greatly in debt to you that I may never be able to payback sufficiently. Here I would like to quote what I found from the internet that can mostly describe my current feeling:
Dear supporters from everywhere in the world,
When I am on your shoulders, I am strong!
You raise me up, so I can walk on stormy seas!
You raise me up, so I can stand on the peak of the mountains!
You raise me up, to more than I can be!
I attribute my success to your great support and would like to thank you with this message.
July 1, 2015