Walgreens National Concerto Competition

It was such a pleasure to finally meet you and to hear the exceptional talent of your young musicians. They are a testament to your vision, passion and commitment. I have had the privilege of working with talented young students at the Julliard Pre-College for many years and it was equally inspiring to hear the students at MYA
Janet Sung, Competition Judge

Midwest Young Artists is hosting the 19th annual Walgreens National Concerto Competition, held at the MYA Center at Fort Sheridan and Bennett-Gordon Hall at Ravinia on December 28 & 29, 2014. Prizes for this solo competition include an opportunity to perform with the MYA Symphony Orchestra and on the prestigious From the Top radio program. Walgreens Corporation’s annual sponsorship enabled MYA to provide students with distinguished judges, a digital recording of their performance, written performance evaluations, and an inviting and nurturing environment in which to participate.

Schedules for the 2014 Walgreens National Concerto Competition:

MYA Junior Division
MYA Senior Division
Open Junior Division
Open Senior Division (strings/piano)
Open Senior Division (voice/other instruments)


There are two Divisions in the contest: MYA Orchestra Division (MYA Division) and Open Division. Students in the MYA Division must be an active participant in the MYA Orchestra Program. All other entrants will participate in the Open Division (including students in MYA Chamber Music, Choral and Jazz Programs).

There are two Levels in each Division:

  1. Junior: for students in 8th grade and younger
  2. Senior: for students in 9th through 12th grades

The competition is open to all instruments. Each Level is further divided into Categories:

  • String
  • Piano
  • Voice
  • Winds & Percussion
  • Early Music (Please note: Students are automatically entered in the Early Music category - in addition to the relevant instrument category - if the piece they are performing was written before 1800. Strings, harpsichord, recorders, gamba winds and brass are encouraged to participate in this category.)


Students must perform a movement from a concerto or work with orchestral accompaniment. Vocalists should perform an opera aria or similar work for voice and orchestra. Selections must be performed from memory with piano accompaniment. Students will have 10 minutes to perform and will be timed. Appropriate accompaniment cuts are recommended. Please note: It is at the judges' discretion to ask for specific sections of a movement being performed. Please have movements prepared in their entirety. Students must provide the judges with one “clean” copy of their selected music and it must be an original, not a photocopy.

For those entering the Early Music Category only, it is recommended that contestants choose any piece written prior to 1800, to be performed from memory. We do not list suggested literature for all other categories.

Early Music Category Repertoire

Harpsichord, recorders, gamba, winds, and bass are encouraged to participate in this category. If you have questions about repertoire, please contact the MYA office. Students are automatically entered into the Early Music Category if the piece they are performing was written before 1800.


Scheduling for the Walgreens Concerto Competition will take place immediately after the December 1 deadline. The schedule is determined by age division and by accompanist to ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to prepare for their performance. Unfortunately, this means we cannot guarantee a specific audition time for any student. Generally, the Junior Division (grades 8 and under) auditions occur on December 28 and the Senior Division (grades 9-12) auditions occur on December 29; however, this depends on the number of applications we receive from each division. A higher volume of applicants in one division may result in some auditions occuring on the alternate day. We will notify all participants of their audition time once the schedule has been completed.


Open Division
MYA Center at Fort Sheridan
878 Lyster Road, Highwood, IL 60040
phone: (847) 926-9898

MYA Division
Bennett-Gordon Hall at Ravinia
Highland Park, IL


All participants must perform with an accompanist. Students must provide their own accompanist. Your accompanist’s name and contact information must be provided on your application. To search for a local accompanist, visit www.privatemusicteaching.org.

Application & Entry Fee

The competition entry fee is $55 for the Open Division and $35 for MYA students (MYA students who are not a part of an MYA Orchestra pay $35 and are entered into the Open Division).

Please note: All applications must be submitted on-line; fees are non-refundable and must be paid on-line or by check, postmarked by December 1st.

Walgreens National Concerto Competition Application

Sign Up

Complete Entry Fee Payment

After submitting the application, you can pay your fee below ($35 for MYA members, $55 for all other entries).

Contestant Name:
Application Form Receipt Number:

Awards and Prizes

Open Division
One Overall winner will be selected from either the Junior or Senior Level

MYA Division
One Overall winner will be selected from the Senior Level
One Overall winner will be selected from the Junior Level

Overall Winners

  • Overall winners from the 2014 competition will perform with orchestra on March 1, 2015 at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall in Evanston, IL.
  • The Overall winners will receive a Cash Award of $500 plus a MYA Tuition Scholarship (valued at $750) to be used towards 2015 Summer Music Festival programs or 2015-2016 academic year large ensemble tuition.
  • The Overall Senior MYA Division winner will have the opportunity to perform on the prestigious From the Top radio program. (Please note: this only applies to students who have not performed as a soloist on prior shows.)

Category Winners

  • Category winners will receive a MYA Tuition Scholarship (valued at $355-$375) to be used toward 2015-2016 academic year large ensemble tuition or 2015 Summer Music Festival programs.
  • The Senior Level Early Music winner, at the discretion of the director, will record with Ars Antigua and will be podcasted from their website.
  • Category winners will be chosen, at the discretion of the director, to perform in March, 2015, on the Winners Recital.
  • Winning soloists may also be selected for performance opportunities with Midwest professional and community orchestras.

Hotel Reservations

Out-of-town participants are encouraged to use the MYA rate ($92/night) at the Hyatt Deerfield (1750 Lake Cook Road, Deerfield, IL) for this event. To utilize this rate, click here to reserve your room online.

All additional questions about the Walgreens National Concerto Competition can be directed to Ben Rusch, Special Events Coordinator, at BenRusch@mya.org.

Where are they now?

Jeremy Black

Mandy Dennis

Alisa Jordheim

Tylee Lin

Ben Solomonow

Michael Soule

Rachel Stenzel

Krista Stewart

Natalia Szadkowski

Marta Vieira

Molly Yeh