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Medieval and Renaissance Competition

Medieval and Renaissance Competition


EMA's fourth Medieval and Renaissance Competition will take place at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, Maryland on October 1, 2016. Our competition brings together some of the brightest up-and-coming performers of music between 1000 and 1600.

Past Participants, Application Process and Application


Early Music America, with the support of a generous individual donor, sponsored three Medieval/Renaissance Performance Competitions. This competition encouraged the development of emerging artists in the performance of Medieval and Renaissance music.


Unicorn Prize and Audience Prize Winner: Plaine & Easie


Unicorn Prize Winner: Ensemble La Rota


Unicorn Prize Winner: Asteria


Eligible Applicants

Applicants must be ensembles (minimum 2 performers) using voice(s) and/or period instrument(s).

Repertoire is limited to the Medieval and Renaissance period, roughly 1000 - 1600 A.D., performed on period instruments and in a style which is historically informed.

Applicants must be members of EMA (either the ensemble must be an organizational member of EMA or all members of the ensemble must be individual members).

Applicants must be residents of USA or Canada.

Applicants must meet the definition of "emerging artists"-ensembles which have not performed together for more than 5 years and where the average age of the performers is 35 or younger, as of the date of application (most of the performers should be under 35).

Previous ensemble winners of EMA competitions are not eligible to compete; ensembles including a current member of the EMA board or staff are not eligible to compete.

Application Deadline

April 15, 2016 (11:59 p.m. ET)


An anonymous panel of 5 judges, selected by EMA, will choose the finalists, based on performance quality of their recordings.

The selected finalists will be invited to give a live 20 minute performance in concert at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, MD (Travel subsidies, $200/person up to a maximum $1,000 per finalist ensemble, will be available upon application to help subsidize the trip to Baltimore).

Prize winners will be selected immediately after the concert. A panel of 5 judges, selected by EMA, will judge the finalists’ competition in Baltimore and select the winner with a celebratory reception following the announcement.

First Place Award
  1. A cash prize of $2,500
  2. Engagements with select major presenters of early music to perform a concert during the 2017-18 or 2018-19 season.
  3. A short feature article in a subsequent issue of EMAg.
  4. A feature on the early music radio program, Harmonia, as scheduled by the host, Angela Mariani.
  5. PR coaching.
  6. Access to a business coaching mentor.
  7. Opportunity for broadcast on classical radio.
Second Place Award

The Second Place winner, selected by the judges, receives $1,500.

Audience Award

The Audience Prize is voted on by the audience in attendance at the finals. This prize includes a $500 cash prize and will be awarded immediately after the finals.

Required Materials
  1. Please submit a list of ensemble members including the following information: Name, Address, Phone Number, Email, Age and Instrument(s).
  2. Bios of the performers. Word Limit: 300 Max for each performer
  3. History of the Ensemble. Word Limit: 300 Max
  4. 10-15 minutes of video files demonstrating ensemble's performance. May be 2-4 samples to comprise 10-15 mins. Single camera, still shot. Files are ideally unedited, from a live performance, with applause deleted. Video to be submitted via link to YouTube.
  5. List of repertoire included in the 10-15 minutes of video files.
  6. Possible program for final round including program notes.
  7. 1 - 2 full-length examples of potential touring programs.




Please submit the name of one person in the ensemble to act as the main person of contact




Please submit (in this order) the NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE, EMAIL, AGE and INSTRUMENT for each performer, followed by a short bio (maximum 300 words)


Please submit a short description (maximum 300 words) of your ensemble's history (i.e. concerts performed, awards won, workshops and festivals attended, etc.)


Please submit a link to a high-quality video hosted on YouTube or Vimeo. The length of your video should be no more than 15 minutes


Please submit a list of works featured in your audition video in the order in which they are performed


Please submit a program of music your ensemble will perform if they are selected to play in the final round of the competition


If selected as the first prize winner of the competition, your ensemble will have the opportunity to perform as part of select early music series around the United States. Please submit 1-2 programs you would like to perform at these concerts

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