Mateusz Borowiak (third place at the Concours Reine Elisabeth) at Flagey

19:00 | Flagey (Place Sainte-Croix, 1050 Brussels)
Mateusz Borowiak © Bruno Vessiez Mateusz Borowiak © Bruno Vessiez

The pianist Mateusz Borowiak finished the Concours Musical International de Reine Elisabeth in third place, thus winning the Prix du Comte de Launoit. He also won the prix du public awarded by public radio Musiq'3 (Prix Musiq'3).

He will give a concert at Flagey’s Studio 4 on 29 June 2013 at 19:00 in the framework of the  Musiq3 Festival (full programme below in PDF format)
Ticket: €10 > 5 in advance, €12 > 7 before the concert
Online boxoffice on the Flagey website (HERE)

+++ Where is Flagey? HERE!

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Sonata in D major, K. 311
Frédéric Chopin, 4 Mazurkas, op. 24
Grażyna Bacewicz, Sonata No. 2

>>> More about Mateusz Borowiak
>>> More about the Concours Musical Reine Elisabeth de Belgique


Mateusz Borowiak was born in 1988 and is the son of two pianists. The 24 year old musician was born into a Polish family who had made their home in Great Britain, where he still resides. He studied piano and composition at the Guildhall School of Music and at the London Drama Junior School, before attending Girton College, Cambridge. He left the school in 2009 with a dual diploma awarded with honours. Continuing his studies, he took part in the classes given by Professor Andrzej Jasiński at Salzburg’s "Mozarteum" Summer Academy. It was this that led him to continue his training at the Katowice Karol Szymanowski Conservatoire, where he was in the same teacher’s class. In 2011, he obtained his Master’s with distinction. He is currently finishing an additional two years of study. Mateusz Borowiak has won several piano competitions: in 2006 he came away with First Prize at the Royal Overseas League Piano Competition in London; in 2010 - with First Prize at the Monza Rina Sala Gallo International Competition before winning first prize in 2011 the International Maria Canals Competition (Barcelona) and the Yamaha Foundation European Competition (Poland). He has played on many an international stage, including Paris’s Salle Cortot, the Barbican Hall, St Martin-in-the-Fields, Birmingham Symphony Hall or Auditorio de Tenerife. He has given concerts with the Royal Philharmonic, the London Mozart Players, the Sinfonietta Cracovia and the Bilbao Orkestra Sinfonikoa.

The Concours Reine Elisabeth was Mateusz Borowiak’s second performance in Belgium. The first time was in 2010, at the invitation of the Polish Institute, for a concert in the Gothic Hall of Brussels Town Hall during the festivities held to mark the two hundredth anniversary of Fryderyck Chopin’s birth.

Third prize in the Concours Reine Elisabeth is, to date, the most prestigious prize he has received. The Belgian press was lavish in its praise: Ayrton Desimpelaere ( found the young pianist’s performance ‘unforgettable’ and spoke of his ‘execptional timbre, his rich sounds, his perfect conduct and his mastery of polyphony’ before concluding: ‘he is a pianist of great maturity’. This was a view shared by Serge Martin, writing in Le Soir on 3 June (p. 29), who described the pianist as an ‘incredibly rich personality whose best is yet to come’ and Ludwig de Wolk who, in, stressed that Borowiak is a ‘winning alphapianist’. In La Libre on Monday 3 June (p.40), Martine D. Mergeay singled out ‘his sense of construction and ability to bring a score to life’. And her plaudits don’t stop there: ‘The accomplished virtuosity, which seems self-effacing, the profound musicality and a kind of humility or, and this amounts to the same thing, his devotion to the work, with, of course, all the means with which to express it. Further still: a nobility of spirit which allows him to see far and wide, even in the midst of the storm’. As for Tom Janssens, the critic had no hesitation in declaring that the musician’s interpretation of Rachmaninov was exactly as the composer would have wanted! (deStandaard, 3 June, p. D3)

The public’s Musiq'3 prize
The public’s Musiq’3 prize is awarded on the basis of votes from THE WHOLE PUBLIC (which includes the audience in the room, but also those who are listening/watching to Musiq’3, on the Internet or on television), invited to vote for their favourite candidate by telephone, SMS and via the Musiq’3 site. One lucky winner is then awarded a prize amounting to 2,500€.
Mateusz Borowiak received the cheque from Jean-Paul Philippot, general administrator of the RTBF, at the prizegiving ceremony held at la Chapelle Musicale Reine Elisabeth on Tuesday 4 June.
>>> On the Musiq'3 website


The Concours musical international Reine Elisabeth de Belgique was set up in 1937 by the Queen of the Belgians, based on an idea by Eugène Ysaye, with a view to supporting and promoting talented Belgian musical youth. The competition was improved in 1951 (which was when it was given its current name). Now, it is one of the most prestigious music competitions in the world. It takes place every year and includes four categories (held in three stages): violin, piano, composition and singing. The meetings, which traditionally take place in May, last almost one month.
This year, from 6 May until 1 June, piano took pride of place. 283 artists had registered and the panel selected 73 competitors, from 19 countries. In addition to Mateusz Borowiak, one other Pole took part in the competition: Przemysław Witek.
Rules stipulate that 12 musicians take part in the final, when concerts are held in the Henry Le Boeuf Hall at the Palais des Beaux-Arts. Each competitor must play a sonata, a contemporary composition selected by the competition, as well as a concert with an orchestra.
First prize went to the Israeli-Russian pianist Boris Giltburg.

Video of the musical programme Mateusz Borowiak presented in the final and semi-final: HERE

As a reminder, three singers have already won the Concours international Reine Elisabeth: Aga Wińska (First Prize in 1988), Iwona Sobotka (First Prize in 2004) and Bernadetta Grabias (Third Prize in 2008).

>>> Flagey


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