The Montgomery Symphony Orchestra is now inviting entries to our Eighth Annual Youth Concerto Competition!
Since launching its youth concerto competition in 2016, the MSO has showcased multiple winning soloists, providing an opportunity to perform with us at our annual June concert. Entries are now being accepted for our eighth annual concerto competition and must be submitted by Friday, March 15, 2024. This year’s winners will perform on Sunday, June 9, 2024.
The competition is open to middle and high school musicians (grades 6-12) on any orchestral instrument including percussion, with the exception of piano.
Musicians must reside in one of the following counties to be eligible:
Maryland: Anne Arundel, Howard, Montgomery, Prince George’s
Virginia: Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax, Loudon
District of Columbia
Entrants select the piece and/or movement(s) they would like to perform, and are strongly encouraged to do so in consultation with their private teacher or band/orchestra director. Selections should be no longer than approximately 10 minutes in length and must have standard orchestral accompaniments readily available for purchase or rent at a fee that will not exceed $500.00.
Pieces performed by concerto winners in the last two years may not be selected; these include:
- Georges Hüe, Fantasie for Flute and Orchestra
- Camille Saint-Saëns, Violin Concerto No. 3
- Launy Grøndahl , Concerto for Trombone and Orchestra
- Pablo de Sarasate, Ziguenerweisen
- Édouard Lalo, Cello Concerto (1st movement)
- Henri Vieuxtemps, Violin Concerto No. 5 in A Minor
The MSO reserves the right to disqualify entries that do not meet these standards. Other inquiries regarding repertoire may be sent to [email protected].
Record a video of you performing your selected piece. Upload your video file to YouTube as an unlisted video and complete the entry form to submit the link no later than Friday, March 15, 2024.
- Your video will be reviewed by a panel of judges who will listen, not watch. So don’t worry about how the video looks — only about how your performance sounds!
- You can use any video recording device you have access to — even a cell phone — but make sure the device is close enough to you to record high-quality audio.
- The judges will review the submissions anonymously, so your name and voice should NOT be part of the video you submit. Our competition administrators will know it’s yours via the form.
- The easiest way to share your final video is by uploading it to YouTube. Step-by-step instructions are available at: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/57407. You will need to create an account.
- Before you start uploading, change the YouTube privacy setting for your video to “Unlisted.” This will ensure that your video is only viewable to someone who has the link. It will not be searchable. (The MSO will only share this link with our judges.)
- If you prefer, you can also send us a shareable link to listen to your video file via Google Drive, Dropbox, or another file-sharing service. Just make sure the settings allow anyone with the link to view it!
Competition winners will be invited to rehearse and perform their selected piece with the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra before a live concert audience at Sligo Seventh-day Adventist Church in Takoma Park, MD on Sunday, June 9, 2024. Each winner will also receive a $100 award from the MSO’s Scott Wood Scholarship Fund.
Winners should plan to join the MSO for at least three evening rehearsals in Takoma Park, MD, prior to the concert to prepare their pieces with the orchestra. (Regular rehearsals are typically on Mondays; the dress rehearsal will be on Thursday, June 6.)
To help cover the costs of administering the competition and concert, the competition includes a $25 entry fee. However, we will waive this fee for any student for whom it poses a barrier to entry. We welcome and encourage entrants of diverse backgrounds.
Announcement of Results
We plan to announce the winners of the competition by April 1, 2024.
When you are ready with your video audition, submit the form below no later than 11:59pm on Friday, March 15, 2024. Limit of one video submission per student.