Friends of the Arts/NSU Young Artist Competition Guidelines

Competition is open to students in grades 11-12, and who meet at least ONE of the following specifications:

  1. Reside in South Dakota, North Dakota, or Minnesota, or
  2. Study under a graduate of NSU’s Master of Music Education program, or
  3. Receive advance permission from the NSU Department of Music faculty

Entrants are allowed to compete in only one performance category.

Competition Application Deadline

2023 application deadline to be announced.

Apply now


Competition Categories and Cash Prize Awards

  1. Strings (repertoire requirements)
    • First Place:  $500
    • Second Place:  $250
    • Third Place:  $150
  2. Piano (repertoire requirements)
    • First Place:  $500
    • Second Place:  $250
    • Third Place:  $150
  3. Voice (repertoire requirements)
    • First Place:  $500
    • Second Place:  $250
    • Third Place:  $150
  4. Woodwinds/Brass/Percussion (repertoire requirements)
    • First Place:  $500
    • Second Place:  $250
    • Third Place:  $150


Competition Rules

  • Decisions of competition judges are final. 
  • A first-place winner may not enter in the same performance category the following year, but may compete in a different performance category.
  • Must submit a YouTube video (include in your application) by Jan. 10, 2022.


Competition Music

  • Programs should be 5 to 15 minutes in length, and may be cut off if exceeding that duration.
  • Repertoire requirements are listed under the individual performance categories.
  • By entering the competition, entrants agree to abide by all Federal copyright laws.  Photocopies are strongly discouraged.


Performance Policies

  • Performance programs should be 5 to 15 minutes in length (see Repertoire Requirements).
  • Performance may not be listened to in full if maximum time is exceeded (does not affect results)
  • Individual movements of suites, sonatas or other groupings that can be performed as musical units are permitted.
  • Cuts in solo parts, if taken, should be marked.  Repeats are left to the discretion of entrant.
  • Cuts in the tutti (piano) parts of concerto movements are allowed and encouraged.
  • All repertoire must be performed with single instrument accompaniment except for works written specifically for unaccompanied solo instrument.
  • Recorded accompaniments are not permitted. Works written using supplemental sounds, including those either electronically or acoustically produced or pre-recorded, are not permitted.
  • Must submit a video recording. Audio-only submissions will not be judged.



Entrants should record with piano when applicable.