The idea of organizing a new music event in Stockholm, combining a professional approach with an emphasis on democracy and accessibility for most young music enthusiasts at all stages of musical education, emerged in late 2009. It belongs to teachers of Stockholm "Maestroakademin" music school — pianist Galina Ehrngren and violinist Anna Sundin, as well as the founder and main organizer of the Savshinsky International Music Competition in St. Petersburg, Dmitry Mikhaylov. The initiative was supported by state organizations of Sweden — RUM (Association of Young Musicians in Sweden), KMH (Royal College of Music), as well as Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia and St. Petersburg State Conservatory named after Rimsky-Korsakov.
The main venue for the competition was the Historical Museum of Stockholm (Historiska museet). Due to the large number of participants and the limited number of days, parallel auditions were held in the concert halls of two large music schools in the city center — Adolf Fredrik's Music Classes and Södra Latins gymnasium. The jury of the competition included professors and teachers from Stockholm and St. Petersburg conservatories, as well as other higher and secondary educational institutions of Sweden, Austria, Germany, Finland, Serbia, Estonia, Lithuania, Belgium, the Netherlands, Russia, and the United States.
The first competition, held in mid-May 2010, attracted about 300 performers, and since then it has been held regularly. In different years, the number of participants reached more than 700, and the geography of the competition covered more than 40 countries.
One of the important distinguishing features of SIMC was and remains the narrow specialization of jury commissions — pianists evaluate pianists, violinists evaluate violinists, and so on in all categories.
Until 2020, the competition consisted only of live auditions. In 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was decided to hold the competition remotely, based on video recordings submitted by participants with their applications. The organizers set the task of maintaining high professional standards of the "live" event, having to switch to an online format. The idea turned out to be interesting and productive — the Eighth and Ninth competitions (in 2021 and 2022) gathered a large number of participants and revealed many new talents from distant regions from Sweden, such as China, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand.
Among SIMC's partners in different years were Nacka Musikskola, Kulturföreningen Semibrevis, RUM (Riksförbundet Unga Musikanter), Historiska Museet (Stockholm), Yamaha Piano Center, KMH, Södra Latins gymnasium, Adolf Fredriks musikklasser, Herzen University, St. Petersburg State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory and others.
The upcoming X SIMC will take place in June 2023 for the first time in two formats: from June 3—6 in-person, and from June 3—30 online. Both formats are held as separate events.