Interpretation competition

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Interpretation competition rules 2020

11th International Zdeněk Fibich Competition in Interpretation of Melodrama
Prague 30 October – 1 November 2020

Competition Rules – Recitation and Piano

Vyhlašovatel a organizátor soutěže
Společnost Zdeňka Fibicha, z. s.

The Competition is organized under the auspices of
Zdeněk Fibich Society

In collaboration with:
The Music Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts, Prague
The Theater Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts, Prague
The Prague Conservatoire
College of Acting, Prague

With the support of:
Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic
Capital City of Prague
City District Prague 1
Nadace Život umělce Foundation
Český hudební fond Foundation

The International Zdeněk Fibich Competition in Interpretation of Melodrama is held under the patronage of the Czech Commission of UNESCO

Organization committee:
Director of Competition: PhDr. Věra Šustíková, Ph. D.
tel.: +420 732 149 923

Secreteriat of Competition:
Mgr. Darina Svobodová
tel.: +420 224 497 733

Společnost Zdeňka Fibicha
In: České muzeum hudby
Karmelitská 2
118 00 Praha 1
Czech Republic


The competition is open to competing couples (reciter and pianist) of all nationalities who:

  1. fulfill the age limit from 15 to 35
  2. fulfill the competition rules
  3. learn a repertoire in accordance with the competition rules


Is controlled at the registration by submitting the passport or identification card. In case the data in the Application Form differ, the competitor is disqualified and the competing couple is not allowed to enter the competition.


APPLICATION FORM – candidates should fill in the application form, which can be found at website (section: Interpretation Competition) and send it to:

To the application form the candidates enclose scans of the scores (in PDF), in case of new melodramas for the 3rd round be sure to include the full name of the composer, the author of the text, or the author of the artistic translation and separately the original text. The new material will be delivered according to the agreement, but not later than September 15th 2020.

The closing date for applications – July 30th 2020

The application is valid after paying the subscription fee. The participation fee for the competition pair is 2000 CZK. The attendance fee must be paid by the closing date for applications on account 51-1079090217/0100, IBAN: CZ3001000000511079090217, BIC / SWIFT: KOMBCZPPXXX, with all bank charges being paid by the participant. The fee is non-refundable and serves to cover the administrative costs of the competition. The participants will order the obligatory Czech-German-English edition of the compulsory compositions of the first round of the competition at AMOS Publishing House Editio, spol. s.r.o., Prague 1, Opletalova 1015/55 or at and the winning composition from the International Zdeňek Fibich Competition on Composition of Melodrama from 2019 at the Zdeňek Fibich society.

The venue of the competition and the conditions for competitors
All rounds of the Competition will take place at the Gallery of the Music Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts, Malostranské náměstí 13, Praha 1. Classrooms with pianos will be available for rehearsals.

Travel expenses are paid by the candidates themselves. The organizers can arrange accommodation at selected hotels with a significant discount on request.


Program of the Competition
The competitors are obliged to respect the program of the competition. The exact time schedule of all three rounds and seminars will be announced before the beginning of the competition. The program of the final concert will be announced after the end of the 3rd round of the Competition. The repertoire of the concert is up to the jury. The competitors have no claims to be payed a fee for the final concert.

The jury of the 11th International Zdeněk Fibich Competition in Interpretation of Melodrama consists of outstanding artists from abroad and from the Czech Republic. The representation of experts in drama and music is proportionately equal. The jury consists of five members and changes every year. The only permanent member is the Director of the Competition or another member of the organization team accredited by the Director. The final composition of the jury will be announced prior to the commencement of the competition.

General settlements of the Competition
The number of competitors in all three rounds is limited. The 1st round can be attended by 24 couples at most, 14 competing duos at most are allowed to pass to the 2nd round and only 8 competing duos proceed to the 3rd round. The progress is due to the system of valuation of the Competition (see lower). The jury may exclude the competing couple from the Competition even if the number of progressive competitors is not fulfilled in the following justified cases:

It is not necessary to interpret the text and music by heart. The scores can be used only in their original version. For the 1st round – Zdeněk Fibich’s melodramas – other language contestants can use either the Czech, English and German language versions or, in case there is an official poetic translation of Erben’s text (e.g. in French, Russian, etc.), they are obliged to use this version. For other rounds of the Competition in the case of absence of a national repertoire, it is possible to use the foreign repertoire in the original version or to submit an official artistic translation of the text into the native language.

The use of microphone is not allowed.

The order of appearance of competing duos is due to the lot, which takes place before the beginning of the competition. In the next rounds the order is turned according to the jury’s decision.

System of valuation of the Competition
The performance of the competing duo is evaluated by following criteria:

Each juror evaluates the performance of the duo in every round by marks from 5 to 25 points. The competing duo can obtain in one round from 25 to 125 points (the lesser the better). Each round is evaluated the same way. In the end the winners of all three rounds are announced. The final placing of the competing duos is due to the total of points of all three rounds. (The best possible result is 75 points.)
The jury is obliged not to award one or more of the prizes, to split or divide them as well. There is no repeal to the valuation of the jury.

The prizes awarded to competing duos of the 11th International Zdeněk Fibich Competition in Interpretation of Melodrama are as follows:

Main prizes

Additional awards

Other awards will be made public prior to the commencement of the competition


1st round:
Zdeněk Fibich / Karel Jaromír Erben: Štědrý den (Christmas Eve) or Vodník (The Water Sprite) – final length: 12 – 15 minutes
(Compulsory score: Zdeněk Fibich – Melodramas Štědrý den and Vodník, AMOS Editio, AM 0009, Prague 2003)

2nd round:
One melodrama, a cycle of short melodramas or a passage from an extensive cycle composed in the nineteenth or twentieth century (up to the year 1999) selected from native production or world repertoire of final length: 7 – 10 minutes

3rd round:
One melodrama, a cycle of short melodramas or a passage from an extensive cycle composed in the twenty fist century (from the year 2000) – selected from native production or world repertoire – new melodramas are welcome – final length: 7 – 10 minutes

Notice: The competing duo attending more than one annual of the competition is obliged to interpret a new repertoire. (The scores once interpreted cannot be performed in the competition by the same duo again).

These Competition conditions were issued in accordance with the Status of the International Zdeněk Fibich Competition in Interpretation of Melodrama amended on 15th January 2019. The Competition conditions are published in Czech and English. In the event of dispute the Czech version is decisive.