Julien Siino wins 44th E-Gré National Music Competition in Strings

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The 44th Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition (E-Gré) for the performance of Canadian and contemporary music is pleased to announce its 2021 prize winners:

A man leans against a wall and looks to his side while holding a cello
Julien Siino

1st Prize

Julien Siino (with pianist Edward Liddall)

2nd Prize

Isabella Perron (with pianist Todd Yaniw)

3rd Prize

Ariel Carrabré (with pianist Michel-Alexandre Broekaert)

City of Brandon Prize for the Best Performance of the Commissioned Work

Julien Siino (with pianist Edward Liddall)

Finalist Prizes (in alphabetical order)

Christopher Hwang (with pianist Younggun Kim)

Julia Mirzoev (with pianist Meagan Milatz)

David Liam Roberts (with pianist Godwin Friesen)


On September 18 and 19, 2021, six of Canada’s best emerging string players performed live-streamed recitals for the 44th Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition (E-Gré) in Strings. The E-Gré Competition began in 1976 and is the most important annual Canadian and contemporary music competition. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the competition was held entirely online, with each finalist live-streaming their final recital from a safe performance space in their hometown.

All six competitors performed one final recital, and each program was required to include at least 50% Canadian music, as well as this year’s commissioned work: La Pieta (After Monkman) by Ian Cusson.

First-place winner, Julien Siino, received a cash award of $6,000, and will embark on a cross-Canada tour in October and November 2021. The winner and their pianist will each receive $5,000 in performance fees.

Second-prize winner, Isabella Perron, received a cash prize of $2,500, and third-prize winner, Ariel Carrabré, received the Q Country 91.5, 94.7 Star FM & Westman Communications Group Prize of $1,500 cash.

The City of Brandon Prize of $1000 for the Best Performance of the 2021 commissioned piece, La Pieta (After Monkman) by Ian Cusson, was awarded to Julien Siino. The remaining competing finalists each received a $1,000 cash prize.

The jurors for this year’s competition were the members of the Bozzini Quartet: Clemens Merkel, Isabelle Bozzini, Stéphanie Bozzini, and Alissa Cheung. The jury chair was President and CEO of the Canadian Music Centre, Glenn Hodgins.

“I am so honored to have won First Prize in the E-Gré Competion with my dear colleague Edward Liddall! We had a great time preparing the livestreamed final and especially exploring Eckardt-Gramatté’s Duo Concertante, and we now look forward to going on tour across Canada and sharing this repertoire to different (and hopefully live) audiences! Thank you to everyone involved for your commitment to keeping the Competition going amidst these trying times for the performing arts.”

Julien Siino, 2021 E-Gré Winner

The 2021 E-Gré Competition gratefully acknowledges the support of Brandon University School of Music, Canada Council for the Arts, Manitoba Arts Council, SOCAN Foundation, the City of Brandon, Westman Communications Group, Brandon Area Community Foundation, and many corporate and private donors.

Julien Siino, cello

Canadian cellist Julien Siino obtained his bachelor’s degree in Cello Performance with Leslie Snider at the Quebec Conservatory of Music. He then continued his studies in Europe at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Den Haag (Holland Scholarship) and the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Paris. His principal teachers have been Morag Northey, Leslie Snider, Michel Strauss, Jan-Ype Nota, Guillaume Paoletti and Bruno Cocset.

He has won first prize at various competitions, including the International Agustin Aponte Competition (Spain), the Canadian Music Competition, and the Petit Mozart Audi Sainte-Foy competition (Canada). As a soloist, chamber musician, and member of orchestras such as the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, the Orchestra of the Americas, the Collegium Musicum Schloss Pommersfelden (Germany) and the Nationaal Jeugd Orkest (Netherlands), he has performed in great North American and European concerts halls. He is also regularly invited to perform with the Violons du Roy, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, Orchestre philharmonique de Radio-France and Orchestre national de Montpellier.

He plays on a cello made in Paris by Auguste Sébastien Bernardel in 1838 with a bow by Victor François Fétique generously loaned to him by Canimex Inc. He is currently Artist in Residence at the Academy of the Paris National Opera and the Académie musicale Philippe Jaroussky.

Edward Liddall, piano

A man smiles
Edward Liddall

Edward Liddall is a British pianist, in demand as a solo pianist, chamber musician and song accompanist. He has performed at venues and festivals worldwide as a solo pianist, and as a chamber musician, including at The Barbican, The Wigmore Hall, The Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, New Philharmonic Hall, Bratislava, and Opera National de Paris. He is currently in residence at the Academy of the Opera National de Paris, where he works as a pianist and vocal coach.

Edward has had the opportunity to take part in masterclasses with artists such as Susan Tomes, Ferenc Rados, Ralf Gothoni, Graham Johnson, Malcolm Martineau, Ann Murray and Emanuel Krasovsky, and in 2016 attended IMS Prussia Cove, where, together with cellist Leander Kippenberg, he studied with Thomas Ades.

He has completed a junior fellowship at The Guildhall School of Music & Drama under the tutelage of Caroline Palmer, having previously completed a master’s degree (with distinction) there. Prior to this, he studied privately with Thalia Myers. 


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