Performance Competitions Guidelines
Applications for the Performance and Composition Competitions are no longer being accepted.
- With the uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, states have the option in 2020 to hold live or video competitions. Search for your state to verify the type of competition and other details. Entrants are responsible for verifying the format (live or video) prior to entering the competition.
- The finals of the MTNA Competitions will be a video round.
- The residency requirements have been waived for international students who were unable to return to in-person classes in the US, but are continuing to study online with a teacher here.
- Live accompaniments are preferred for video competitions; however, if entrants are unable meet with accompanists due to state or local orders, prerecorded accompaniments are acceptable.
- Primary communication is via email. The application must have accurate email addresses for entrant, teacher and parents.
- Application deadline for Junior, Senior and Young Artist has been extended to Wednesday, September 23, 2020, 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time. There will be no exceptions.
The three-tiered Performance Competitions begin with live state competitions. With the uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, states have the option in 2020 to hold live or video competitions. Search for your state to verify the type of competition and other details.The winners/representatives of each state’s competitions advance to a video-only division competition. All videos will receive comments from the judges. Division winners/representatives will compete in a video round for the national finals.
- An entrant may enter each individual competition in only one state.
- Entry in multiple performance categories is allowed, but each entrant is allowed only one entry within a category. (Click guidelines at the bottom of the page for categories in each level.)
- An entrant may enter both the solo performance competitions and the Chamber Music competitions in the same year.
- All entry fees are nonrefundable.
- Competition financial obligations, including travel and lodging, are the responsibility of the entrant.
- State and division winners/representatives advance to the next level of the competition.
- If there is only one (1) entrant in a State-level category, there will be NO State Competition. The entrant will be named the State Representative and will advance directly to the Division Competition.
- If there is only one (1) entrant in a Division-level category, the entrant will be named the Division Representative and is required to submit videos for comments only by the December deadline prior to advancing to the National Finals.
- If there are seven (7) or fewer entrants nationwide in a category at the state level, those entrants will advance directly to the National Finals.Those entrants are required to submit videos for comments from the division judges.
- State Winners/Representatives are required to submit a video by the December deadline for the online-only Division Competition. Detailed instructions will be included in the email following the state competitions.
- Division Winners/Representatives are required to compete in the National Finals.
- Decisions of competition judges are final.
- A national first-place MTNA solo performance winner may not enter again in the same level/category. For example, a national Junior Piano Winner cannot enter Junior Piano again.
- A national first-place MTNA Senior Piano Duet team may not enter again with the same personnel.
- Facilities permitting, competition performances (including winners concert) are open to the public. Competition rehearsals are closed to the public.
- Audio or video recording and photography of the competitions and winners concerts are strongly discouraged.
- It is the responsibility of the entrant to be available for all published dates of the competitions.
- The assigned rehearsal and performance times are final and cannot be changed.
- No changes in repertoire are allowed following submission of the application. Repertoire must remain the same for all three levels of the competition (State, Division, National).
- All repertoire listed on the application must be prepared at all levels of the competition (State, Division, National).
- Programs may be over or under the performance time limit. Programs over the time limit at any level of the competition will be cut at the judges' discretion.
- Repertoire requirements are listed under individual levels (Junior, Senior, Young Artist, Chamber Music).
- Teachers should verify that all repertoire listings are correct before submission of the application.
- Entrants and teachers should verify all repertoire listings after receiving the email confirmation following submission of the application.
- By entering the competitions you agree to abide by all Federal Copyright Laws. Photocopies are strongly discouraged.
- LIVE state competitions (not applicable for state/division/national video round):
- All solo performance entrants must provide a single score (original preferred) of each work listed on the application for use by the judge(s)
- Measures must be numbered at the beginning of each line.
- Solo instrumentalists may submit either the solo part or the complete score.
- Names on scores do not need to be covered.
Competition Procedure for All Categories
- No minimum time limit.
- Programmed music may exceed maximum time limit.
- Performance will be stopped when maximum time is reached (does not affect results).
- Entrant chooses first selection; judges determine remaining order of performance.
- A portion of all repertoire submitted on the application will be heard at every competition level.
- Questions concerning repertoire should be directed to the appropriate national coordinator (Junior, Senior, Young Artist, Chamber Music) prior to submission of application.
- Individual movements of suites, sonatas or other groupings that can be performed as musical units are permitted.
- Cuts in solo parts are not permitted. Repeats are left to the discretion of entrant.
- Cuts in the tutti (piano accompaniment) parts of movements are allowed and encouraged.
- All repertoire must be performed with single instrument accompaniment except for works written specifically for unaccompanied solo instrument.
- Live accompaniments are preferred for video competitions; however, if entrants are unable meet with accompanists due to state or local orders, prerecorded accompaniments are acceptable. Works written using supplemental sounds (not accompaniments), including those either electronically or acoustically produced or pre-recorded, are not permitted.
- Live accompaniments are preferred for video competitions; however, if entrants are unable meet with accompanists due to state or local orders, prerecorded accompaniments are acceptable. CDs and online platforms such as SmartMusic.com, Appcompanist.com, Piano Accompaniments.com and Acapella may be utilized as is appropriate.
- Teachers may accompany any entrant.
- Entrant, parents/guardians and teacher have read, understand and agree to the Guidelines for the 2020–2021 MTNA Competitions. Failure to abide by these rules and regulations will make the entrant ineligible to receive recognition or awards.
- Entrants under age 18 have parent/guardian permission to enter MTNA competitions.
- Credit card holder has authorized use to complete the application.
- All entry fees are nonrefundable.
- Entrant will abide by all copyright laws and has permission to use all music given to judges and accompanists during the competitions as outlined here.
- MTNA is not responsible for problems with Internet service or phones.