Schulich School of Music Concerto Competitions

Schulich School of Music Concerto Competitions

The 2018-19 competition categories include: Classical Concerto, Piano, Strings, Harp, Guitar. Finals are open to the public.

2018-2019 Competition dates

Application deadlines

  • Classical Concerto Competition (all instruments and voice): Deadline: November 1, 2019
  • McGill Concerto Competition (piano): Deadline: January 25, 2020
  • McGill Concerto Competition (woodwind, brass, percussion): January 31, 2020

Preliminary rounds

  • Classical Concerto:
    • Voice: TBA
    • Woodwind: TBA
    • Piano: TBA
    • Strings: TBA
    • Piano: TBA
    • Strings: TBA

Finals (open to the public)

Overview and prizes

The first prize winner of each competition will be offered an opportunity to perform with the MGSO under the leadership of Maestro Hauser and will receive a monetary award. The classical concerto competition winner typically performs in the same season, while the winter competition winners perform the following academic year. In the case of graduating students, they must make themselves available to come back to fulfill the engagement. At its discretion, the jury may designate a runner-up, who may be offered the opportunity if the first prize winner is unable to perform.

Jeunesses Musicales Canada and Chapelle historique du Bon-Pasteur: Special prizes

Representatives of Jeunesses Musicales Canada and Chapelle historique du Bon Pasteur will attend the final round of each competition. At their discretion, they may each award a special prize to one performer. This could be an invitation perform in their series or an opportunity to receive support for the development of their artistic endeavours.

Information for applicants


All students registered in a degree program at the Schulich School of Music (including Marianopolis students) are eligible to participate.

  • Non-performance majors can apply at the discretion of their instrumental teacher.
  • Marianopolis students are only eligible for the monetary portion of the prize if they enter the Schulich School of Music the following year, in which case it will be added to their scholarship.
  • No previous first-prize winners are eligible to participate.
  • First-prize winners of any other Schulich School Concerto Competition are eligible to participate.

Competition rounds

The preliminary rounds are organized by each department. Contestants must prepare and memorize the entire concerto and perform it with piano in front of a jury consisting of department members. The jury may stop the contestants in case of time constraints. Public admission is at the discretion of the area chair. An announcement will be posted shortly before the competition.

  • Contestants must procure their own piano accompaniment for their performance. Please consult the accompaniment list and make arrangements well in advance.

The final round consists of a public performance of the entire concerto with piano accompaniment in Pollack Hall in front of an intra- or inter-departmental jury, which will include Maestro Hauser, and an external jury member.

Repertoire requirements

Classical Concerto Competition (open to voice, strings, winds, brass, and piano): 

  • A complete concerto, or a comparable work (for example, concert aria) written between 1750 and 1800, performed in its entirety from memory with piano accompaniment.
  • No Baroque repertoire (J.S. Bach, Handel, Telemann etc) is allowed.
  • Works written after 1800 can sometimes be allowed if they stylistically firmly belong to the Classical era (e.g. Hummel Trumpet Concerto, both in the original key and in E flat). Beethoven’s Piano Concerti 4-5 and Violin Concerto are not eligible due to length. They are, however, appropriate for the winter competitions.

Strings Competition: 

  • A complete concerto written after 1800, performed in its entirely with piano accompaniment. Memorization is required, except when otherwise approved by the area.

Application procedures

Fill out the application form, (PDF icon concerto_competition_application_form [PDF] ) and have it signed by your principal teacher. Applications without a teacher’s signature will NOT be accepted.

To submit the application form:

  • Scan and email the completed form to Prof. Ilya Poletaev (ilya.poletaev [at]