Bartók World Competition & Festival


Qualifying round

a)      Béla Bartók: Suite, Op. 14 – 1st movement (Allegretto) OR 2nd movement (Scherzo)

b)      one etude by Ferenc Liszt

The works chosen for Qualifying round may be performed again during the competition.


Preliminary – max. 20 minutes

The program needs to include:

a)      a piece or movement(s) from Béla Bartók’s compositions for piano except the pieces listed for the Semi-final

b)      a piece by Ernő Dohnányi by the candidate’s choice (max. 5 minutes) OR

Johannes Brahms: 4 Ballades Op. 10 No. 1 in d minor OR No. 2 in D major OR No. 3 in b minor

c)      one etude by Ferenc Liszt from the following cycles by the candidate’s choice:

-          Études d’exécution transcendante, S. 139

-          Grandes études de Paganini, S. 141

-          Trois études de concert, S. 144

-          Zwei Konzertetüden, S. 145


Semi-final – max. 30 minutes

The program needs to include:

a)      one piece by Béla Bartók from among the followings:

-          Improvizációk magyar parasztdalokra (Improvisations on Hungarian Peasant Songs), BB 83

-          Táncszvit (Dance Suite), BB 86b

-          Sonata, BB 88

-          Szabadban (Out of doors), BB 89

b)      one or two movement(s) from a piano sonata by Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart or Ludwig van Beethoven – max. 10 minutes

c)      one piece of the followings*:

-       Dániel Dobos: Drumul Dracului

-       János Mátyás Stark: Toccata

*prize winning compositions of the Bartók World Competition – Composition – 2018, published by Universal Music Publishing Editio Musica Budapest. Free scores will be available to download from the publisher’s website.


Final – max. 30 minutes

a)      a piece or its movement(s) by a composer of the romantic era

b)      a piece or movement(s)  by one of the following composers:

Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, Sergei Rachmaninov, Sergei Prokofiev, Aleksandr Scriabin, Igor Stravinsky


Grand Final

one of  Béla Bartók’s three piano concertos:

-          Piano Concerto No. 1, BB 91

-          Piano Concerto No. 2, BB 101

-          Piano Concerto No. 3, BB 127


Ferenc Liszt: Piano Concerto in A major


Ferenc Liszt: Piano Concerto in E-flat major


All pieces must be performed by heart, except for the contemporary composition under Semi-final c)