Young Artists Competition

General Information

Applicants will audition for a solo performance opportunity with Central Iowa Symphony. Selected performers will be featured on the CIS Young Artists Concert, held at 3:00 pm on Sunday, March 5, 2023, at Ames City Auditorium. Vocalists not older than 22 and pre-college instrumentalists meeting all eligibility requirements stated below may audition.

Auditions will happen on Sunday, January 8, 2023, at Music Hall at Iowa State University beginning at 1:00 pm. A panel of adjudicators, including the CIS Music Director, will select performers who will contribute to an exceptional concert program featuring a balance of instruments, ages, historical periods, and musical styles. The panel reserves the right to select no performers.

Eligibility Requirements

Instrumentalists (wind, brass, percussion, strings, and piano): must be an Iowa resident; not older than age 18; enrolled and attending an Iowa elementary, middle, high, or home school, as of the audition date. College instrumentalists are not eligible to audition. Previous winners are not eligible to audition and may not audition on different instruments.

Vocalists: College undergraduate or graduate students not older than age 22 as of the audition date; enrolled in and attending an Iowa college or university as of the audition date. Pre-college vocalists must meet instrumental eligibility requirements as stated above. Previous winners are not eligible to audition and may not audition on a different instrument.

It is expected that selected performers will make necessary schedule adjustments to accommodate rehearsals as scheduled by the CIS Music Director. At minimum, this includes at least one Monday rehearsal in February (7:15 to 9:30 pm), the dress rehearsal (Saturday, March 4, 2023 9 to 11:30 am), and the concert. Exact rehearsal dates / times TBA.

Repertoire Requirements

Applicants will audition with the work they expect to perform at the CIS concert. All works must be in the standard repertoire for solo instrument or voice with orchestra, 5-12 minutes in length, and be performed from memory. Concertos are limited to one complete movement and must be performed with cadenzas as applicable. Vocalists may perform two contrasting works with a combined maximum performance time of 12 minutes. All auditions must be accompanied and applicants must provide their own accompanists. All repertoire is subject to approval by the CIS Music Director. For further discussion of repertoire, please see the packets for instrumentalists and vocalists, or email the audition coordinator with specific questions.

Application Deadline, Fees, and Contact Information

Application forms are available at The application period is November 1 through December 15. Applications postmarked before or after those dates will not be accepted. Please be sure to submit the correct application form for your audition. All applications must be submitted by regular mail to the address on the application form. Please check your application packet carefully before mailing. Late, incomplete, illegible, and emailed applications will not be accepted.

Application fee: $25 (non-refundable). Please make checks payable to Central Iowa Symphony.

All necessary correspondence with applicants prior to audition day will occur via email, so please be sure to include a valid email address and add the audition coordinator's email to your safe list.

Questions about repertoire, rules, or eligibility? Need more information? Email audition coordinator Donita McCoy.