Van Cliburn Foundation - History


Originally named the Van Cliburn International Quadrennial Piano Competition, the organization was created shortly after Van Cliburn's victory at the inaugural Tchaikovsky International Competition in Moscow in 1958 as a means of perpetuating his unique legacy of effecting cultural diplomacy through classical music. Instituted by a group of Fort Worth music teachers and countless other individuals, the establishment of the organization prompted an invaluable tradition of volunteerism that is still maintained today. The first competition was held in 1962, the Cliburn received its tax-exempt status in 1967, and the name was changed to the Van Cliburn Foundation in 1976 to acknowledge its expanded mission and programming.

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