CAG Victor Elmaleh Competition

Information for the 2015 CAG Victor Elmaleh Competition will be posted in January

The Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition is an annual competition open to instrumentalists, singers and chamber ensembles performing classical and non-traditional repertoire.

Prizes and Awards

All winners receive:

  • Management Contract with Concert Artists Guild
  • A New York Recital

Additional prizes include:

  • BMI Commissioning Prize
  • Victor and Sono Elmaleh Awards: First Prize & Special Piano Prize
  • Sylvia Ann Hewlett Adventurous Artist Prize
  • Chamber Music America Showcase Performance
  • more than 40 Performance Prizes with leading orchestras, concert series and festivals


details are subject to change.

SUGGESTED AGE LIMIT is 30 for instrumentalists and ensembles (average age), 35 for singers. Instrumentalists over 30, singers over 35, or ensembles with an average age over 30, must include a statement explaining why they consider themselves to be in the early stages of a professional career.

ENSEMBLES SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN EXISTENCE with the same membership for at least 12 months prior to the Competition.

NON-TRADITIONAL ENSEMBLES AND INSTRUMENTS are invited to apply. CAG  welcomes a statement of purpose and information on repertoire and technical requirements, if appropriate.

THE COMPETITION IS CLOSED TO THE FOLLOWING INSTRUMENTS/ENSEMBLES: solo harpischord, early music forte-piano, organ, two-piano duo (four-hand piano duos may apply), saxophone quartet

DUOS CONSISTING OF SOLO INSTRUMENT WITH PIANO (such as violin and piano) will be placed in the category of the solo instrument. Applicants may choose their own collaborative artists for all rounds of the Competition.

APPLICANTS WITH NORTH AMERICAN MANAGEMENT are not eligible. However, CAG is glad to work with existing managers who are handling engagements outside the US. Applicants with such management must arrange to have their managers submit a letter to CAG including the following statement, [applicant] will be under management with [name of management] for the following territories: [list territories]. We understand that should [applicant] win the Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition, CAG will have exclusive management rights for the US.

Repertoire Requirements & additional Information


Repertoire should include music in a variety of styles and periods. No specific works or composers are required. Selections should demonstrate the applicant’s breadth of technical and artistic abilities. Applicants may repeat repertoire in subsequent rounds. Specialists in either contemporary, early, or non-traditional music may apply. Repertoire for these musicians must show programmatic diversity and technical scope. Singers must include selections in at least three languages, one of which must be English. There is no aria requirement, and no more than two operatic arias may be included.


  • Applicant must submit 30-45 minutes of music showing the range and scope of the applicant’s artistry. Audio recordings only.
  • Include only complete movements (no excerpts) or complete works.
  • Concerti and other works with orchestra may be included; these works may also be performed with piano accompaniment, except for solo pianists.


  • 60-70 minutes of music (50-60 minutes of music for singers)
  • Complete works only, unless it is common practice to perform selected movements of the work (e.g., the Bach Chaconne or a selection of Chopin Preludes). Singers may submit individual songs or groups as they would in a recital.
  • Include at least one selection composed since 1990.
  • Solo instrumentalists (except pianists) may include concertos, to be performed with piano accompaniment.
  • It is recommended that all solo instrumentalists include at least two major works — sonatas, concertos or other works of similar content and breadth. At least one major work must be performed from memory.
  • Upon acceptance into the Semifinal Round, applicants will receive a Repertoire Sheet with detailed requirements to submit for that round.


The Final Round will consist of an uninterrupted recital program approximately 20 minutes in length. The program may include complete works or movements from larger works. Finalists will be asked to submit two or three concert programs and a concerto repertoire list, if appropriate. Although there will be a printed program, applicants are encouraged to speak briefly about their program to the audience.


Applicants are accepted to the Semifinal Round of the Competition on the basis of evaluations of the submitted recordings by independent judges. All applicants will receive written notification on advancement to the Semifinal Round.

Winners or Finalists of other major competitions may request to proceed directly to the Semifinal Round. If you feel your competition record warrants such consideration, please include a statement of request in your application. Requests will be granted at the discretion of CAG staff.


Soloists must provide their own accompanists make all rehearsal arrangements and pay fees. CAG can recommend qualified accompanists and spaces for rehearsal in New York.


Competitors are responsible for their own and their accompanists travel and accommodation expenses.