Treasures from the past

Did you know that you can watch almost 600 videos of competition performances on our website? Not only from recent years, but also from the early years of the TV recordings made by the RTBF and the VRT. Thanks to various digitisation projects, we now and then receive new gems that we can share with you !

Some context

From the very beginning, the Queen Elisabeth Competition has had a special appeal to the public thanks to its live radio broadcasts. Media coverage received an extra boost from television, whose interest in the Competition dates from
1959. Technical limitations, however, and suspicion of the new medium meant that things got off to a slow start.

Initially, the gala aspect, such as the awarding of the prizes by Queen Elisabeth, received more attention than the music. Neither the original audience at the Centre for Fine Arts (Palais des Beaux-Arts) nor the management of the Competition were prepared to put up with the cumbersome set-up and harsh lighting required by the cameras of the time.

Full live broadcasting as from 1978

From 1964 on, however, television filmed the rehearsals in the Palais des Beaux-Arts as an item for the evening news programme. Starting in 1967, a fixed camera made it possible to immortalise a selection of moments from the semifinals and finals; these were supplemented by a great many reports and interviews. Live broadcasting started in 1972 with partial coverage, which became total in 1978.

New videos to discover

Relive some of the most memorable moments in the Queen Elisabeth Competition history, by watching these recordings of performances from 1978 to 2009, carefully digitalized by RTBF for the TV programme 'Tempo' :
  • Abdel Rahman El Bacha (piano, 1978),
  • Yuzuko Horigome (violin, 1980),
  • Pierre-Alain Volondat (piano, 1983),
  • Vadim Repin (violin, 1989),
  • Thierry Felix (voice, 1992),
  • Markus Groh (piano, 1995),
  • Marie-Nicole Lemieux (voice, 2000),
  • Baiba Skride (violin, 2001),
  • Sergey Khachatryan (violin, 2005),
  • Ray Chen (violin, 2009).

Relive the performances of Voice 2023
The Competition's CD's
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