2018 Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz International Piano Competition

The 30th Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz International Competition was presented December 2-3 in Washington, DC. Tom Oren (Israel) was selected as the first-place winner, with Isaiah Thompson (West Orange, New Jersey) in second and Maxime Sanchez (Toulouse, France) in third.

The 2018 Competition awarded more than $100,000 in scholarships and prizes, including a major scholarship and a guaranteed recording contract with Concord Music Group for the winner. The distinguished judges included Monty Alexander, Joanne Brackeen, Cyrus Chestnut, Herbie Hancock, Jason Moran, Danilo Pérez and Renee Rosnes.

The December 3rd event at the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater featured a star-studded Gala Concert with a tribute to the late Aretha Franklin and the presentation of the Institute’s Maria Fisher Founder’s Award to internationally celebrated vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater. Hosted by award-winning actor Blair Underwood, the evening featured amazing performances by a diverse group of all-stars including Musical Director John Beasley, Theo Croker, Deborah Joy Winans, James Genus, Jimmy Heath and Ledisi. They were joined onstage by past Competition winners and finalists Ambrose Akinmusire, Melissa Aldana, Kris Bowers, Roberta Gambarini, Jazzmeia Horn, Linda Oh and Jamison Ross, all of whom have become leading names on the international jazz scene. Read More.