The 2018 Cooper Competition for Piano Begins Saturday, July 14

July 13, 2018

By Erich Burnett

The Thomas & Evon Cooper International Competition, Piano 2018, July 14-20

Thirty-one participants from around the world kick off seven days of action in Oberlin and Cleveland.

The ninth-annual Thomas and Evon Cooper International Competition begins Saturday, July 14, at Oberlin, with the first of seven days of performances by participants representing seven countries and six U.S. states.

2018 Cooper Competition participants
Participants in the 2018 Cooper Competition (photo by Julie Gulenko ’15)

The performance order for this weekend's opening Semifinal Round is as follows:

9:30 a.m. Saturday, July 14
Ryan Zhu (age 14), Vancouver, Canada 
Lingfei Stephan Xie (17), Shanghai, China 
JiWon Yang (16), Seoul, South Korea 
Bo Zhang (17), Hangzhou, China
William Yang (17), Natick, Massachusetts, U.S.
Nikita Khnykin (15), Oslo, Norway 

2 p.m. Saturday, July 14
Kasey Shao (14), Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.
Kyle Hu (15), Yorktown, Virginia, U.S.
Rufus Bordal (17), Santa Monica, California, U.S.
Edward Zhang (15), Redmond, Washington, U.S.
Kai-Min Chang (17), Changhua County, Taiwan

7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 14
Tony Yun (17), Toronto, Canada
Kuisma Sippola (18), Helsinki, Finland 
Jingting Zhu (16), Shanghai, China 
Arthur Wang (17), Vancouver, Canada 
Sihao Qin (18), Liuzhou, China

9:30 a.m. Sunday, July 15
Leyla Kabuli (18), Berkeley, California, U.S.
Caroline Hsu (14), Saratoga, California, U.S.
J.J. Bui (14), Toronto, Canada 
Adrian King (15), Silverdale, Washington, U.S.
William Chen (15), New York, New York, U.S.

2 p.m. Sunday, July 15
Yerin Yang (15), Seoul, South Korea
Yunchan Lim (14), Siheung-si, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea 
Anne Liu (16), San Diego, California, U.S.
Hsiyun Wu (17), Kaohsiung, Taiwan 
Biguo Xing (18), Beijing, China

7:30 p.m. Sunday, July 15
Ennian Bai (15), Zhejiang, China
Eric Guo (15), Toronto, Canada
Yangrui Cai (17), Guangzhou, China 
Tyler Kim (15), Temecula, California, U.S.
Anton Mejias (17), Helsinki, Finland, Finland 


At 10:30 p.m. Sunday, at the conclusion of the first Semifinal Round, the field of 31 will be reduced to 15. The competition then continues with a second Semifinal Round Monday, July 16, after which the field will be reduced to 10. A Concerto Round takes place Tuesday, July 17, followed by the Recital Finals on Wednesday, July 18.The competition culminates in the Concerto Finals on Friday, July 20, as three finalists perform complete concertos with The Cleveland Orchestra at Severance Hall in Cleveland. One finalist will emerge as the 2018 Cooper champion—with a grand prize of $20,000.

All Oberlin performances are free and take place in Warner Concert Hall (77 W. College St.) on the beautiful campus of Oberlin College and Conservatory.

Click here for tickets to the Concerto Finals July 20 at Severance Hall. (Tickets begin at $13, and all students under age 18 are admitted free with a paying adult.)

CAN'T BE HERE? Follow the action live online: All preliminary rounds on campus will be live streamed at

Details about the participants, jurors, and schedules for each round can be found at the official Cooper Competition website. Follow the competition on the official Cooper Facebook page.

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