Honens Mentor-in-Residence offers coaching sessions to each of the seven Semifinalists who do not advance to the Finals.
The Mentor also hears each of the Finalists perform with the Azahar Ensemble and with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Karina Canellakis, and meets with each Finalist to share insights. The Mentor-in-Residence shares her own experiences as a professional pianist and provides wisdom on the challenges of building a career.
Janina Fialkowska has enchanted audiences for over 40 years with her glorious lyrical sound, her sterling musicianship and her profound sense of musical integrity. In 1974, her career was launched by Arthur Rubinstein after her prizewinning performance at his inaugural Master Piano Competition in Israel. Fialkowska has performed with the foremost North American orchestras, among them the Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Houston Symphony, and Pittsburgh Symphony as well as with all of the principal Canadian orchestras, including the Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver Symphony Orchestras and Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra with which she recorded with Hans Graf. In touring Europe and Asia, she has appeared as guest artist with such prestigious orchestras as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, Halle Orchestra, London Philharmonic, London’s Philharmonia Orchestra, BBC Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, Scottish National Orchestra, Warsaw Philharmonic, and the French and Belgium National Radio Orchestras as well as Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra. Fialkowska was the Founding Director of the ‘Piano Six’ project and its successor ‘Piano Plus’. This latest project brought together some of Canada’s greatest classical pianists, instrumentalists and vocalists with Canadians who, for either geographical or financial reasons, would otherwise be unable to hear this calibre of live classical performance. She is an Officer of the Order of Canada and holds honorary doctorates from Acadia University, Queen’s University and Wilfrid Laurier University. Fialkowska is the recipient of the 2012 Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement in Classical Music, and, in 2013, received the coveted Instrumentalist of the Year award from BBC Music Magazine for her recording Chopin Recital No. 2.