Community Volunteers Help International Pianists Feel at Home in Cleveland
The Cleveland International Piano Competition invited 22 youth from around the world for this year's competition for young artists. While the pianists are in town, each competitor is paired with a host family - not to stay with- but to help them feel at home in Cleveland. It is a tradition that dates back to the beginning for both youth and adult competitors.
The hosts often provide transportation, meals and other assistance needed outside of practice and performance, according to volunteer host and CIPC board member Teresa Good.
“My profession was teaching, so I always love meeting younger people and just seeing the things they are going through in their lives,” Good said.
Occasionally, hosts assist with unusual requests from the traveling musicians.
“We had one person years ago who had a dental problem, so someone had to take him to a dentist,” Good said. “Someone needed shoes one time.”
The hosts are all volunteers from the community who share an interest in the music.
The majority of this year's competitors, ages 12 to 17, traveled from outside of the United States. The winners will be announced Saturday night at a recital at the Cleveland Museum of Art.