CAG Competition FAQ
What is the application deadline for 2020?
CAG has extended the 2020 competition deadlines in light of shutdowns caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The earlybird deadline is now May 15, 2020 (save $40 on the application fee).
The final deadline is June 30, 2020.
What is the age limit?
The age limit for solo instrumentalists is 28, and for solo singers is 30.
The age limit for ensembles is an average of 30, and no member of an ensemble may be aged over 35. Ensembles should have been in existence with the same membership since at least June 30, 2019 (12 months prior to the competition deadline).
Can I enter if I’m over the age limit?
Yes, but you must upload a statement in the Supplemental Materials section of the application explaining why you are in the early stages of your professional career.
Are you open to my instrument?
The 2020 competition is open to all instruments, voice, and chamber ensembles. We encourage unique chamber ensemble combinations.
How much does it cost to apply?
The application fee is $90 (if paid by May 15) or $130 (if paid after May 15).
How does CAG work with Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT)?
CAG and YCAT have announced a new partnership. Winners of the CAG Competition will receive international management (Americas and Europe) jointly with CAG and YCAT, guaranteed performances at both Merkin Concert Hall in New York and Wigmore Hall in London, and professional career development and coaching.
Can I apply for both the CAG Competition and YCAT Auditions?
You cannot apply for both in the same year.
When will I hear back about my application?
Applicants will be notified by email by July 15 about whether or not they have been accepted to the semifinals.
When are the competition rounds?
The virtual finals will be held on Tuesday, October 13.
How many applicants are accepted to the semifinal and final rounds?
This is at the discretion of the juries and depends on who they decide is ready for management and a performing career.
In 2019, 30 applicants were accepted to the semifinal round and 8 to the final round. Please note that this is only a small percentage of applicants and it is a very competitive process.
Winners of the competition must be ready to start a performance career and at the point where they can make a high-impact impression in the industry.
What are the video submission guidelines?
You’ll submit a YouTube or Vimeo link to a single video containing your full audition, or a playlist of separate works. You must include 20-40 minutes of music and list the works, composers, and durations in the application.
The video must be live and unedited. It does not have to be from a concert performance.
The video must have been shot no earlier than June 30, 2018 (2 years before the application deadline).
If you don’t have video that fits these requirements, you can submit the following:
- A short video recorded at home, featuring you playing and/or speaking – feel free to be creative!
- A chamber music video that features you prominently (this is optional for those applying as soloists)
Above all, we want to see your artistry and what you are like as a musician. Show us your musical personality and the joy you gain from playing music. We’re looking for proactive and resourceful artists!
Can my video submission consist of separate videos?
Yes, if these are combined into a playlist. Make sure each of your videos fulfills the requirements set out in the guidelines and that they add up to 20-40 minutes of music in total.
Can I repeat repertoire in the prelim, semifinal and final rounds?
Yes, you can repeat repertoire at any stage.
What are the repertoire requirements?
Your repertoire for all rounds of the competition should reflect your personal programming sensibility. No specific works or composers are required.
Preliminary round (online application):
Include only complete movements or complete works (no excerpts). Concerti with piano accompaniment may be included, unless you are applying as a solo pianist.
Solo singers must include songs in at least three languages, one of which must be English. Arias can be included, but the primary focus of the repertoire should be songs.
If you don’t have video that fits these requirements, see our video guidelines above for what you can submit instead.
Can I apply if I specialize in period performance?
Yes. However we do not have access to a harpsichord in our live audition venues. If you feel your application is still strong enough and that you would be able to provide your own continuo backing, then you are free to apply.
Can I apply if I specialize in new or non-traditional music?
Yes, both soloists and ensembles that specialize in new and non-traditional music are welcome to apply. CAG encourages unique chamber ensemble combinations. You need to be able to easily bring all your required instruments with you to our live audition venues.
Is there a maximum size for my ensemble?
Contact us if you’d like to apply and your ensemble has more than 8 members.