Donor ups prizes in Cincinnati piano competition

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - An anonymous donor has upped the prize money for this year's Cincinnati World Piano Competition.

The annual competition is happening this week at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

A local donor boosted the prize money for the top three medalists. The undisclosed donation will allow prizes of $20,000 for the gold medal, $15,000 for silver and $10,000 for bronze.

Previously, the prize money was $10,000, $5,000 and $3,000.

"We are thrilled beyond words and surprised beyond belief," said Mark Ernster, World Piano Competition executive director.  "Donors usually don't just walk up and make an offer like that.  What a remarkable gesture, and what a great gift to our competitors.  This donation is very much appreciated."

The gold medalist also wins a New York recital debut at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall, valued at $35,000. The Artist Division winner will be able to record a solo piano album.

Tuesday's competition features musicians in the 12 to 22 age group.

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