Chamber music Stl


Chamber Music Society of Saint Louis (CMSSL) is announcing the first annual Rader Young Artist Competition on October 28th and 29th at First Congregational Church of Webster Groves. Giving opportunities to the next generation of classical musicians has long been a priority for this organization. The competition will select four to eight students to become the Rader Young Artists (RYA) for the 2023-2024 season. They will also receive financial support to enter a local or regional competition of their choice. RYA who want to form a chamber ensemble will receive guidance from the Director of Education and may be given the opportunity to perform for the CMSSL audience on a concert prelude.
There is no application fee for entering the competition and CMSSL can provide piano accompaniment including a short rehearsal prior to the event for both rounds if needed (students are also welcome to bring their own pianist if they prefer). In the preliminary round, contestants will play about five minutes of music from two pieces of contrasting styles for a jury of professional musicians. The jury will then select the four to eight Rader Young Artists who will advance to the final round which is open to the public and posted to YouTube. That round will consist of ten minute performances for each RYA followed by an award ceremony once the jury has decided on a grand prize winner, runner-up, and honorable mention.
Over many years, CMSSL has cultivated a deep roster of excellent local musicians who are dedicated to chamber music. This history and reputation makes us uniquely situated to offer rare mentorship opportunities to high school musicians in the Saint Louis area. The Rader Young Artist Competition will give us a new way to continue this tradition of connecting with the next generation of classical musicians.


Both rounds of the competition will be held at the First Congregational Church of Webster Groves.
Special thanks to Dr. Leon Burke and First Congregational for hosting this event.


10/28 Saturday preliminary round begins at 10:00am.
10/29 Sunday final round (open to the public) begins at 3:00pm, followed by award ceremony.

Scholarship Awards

This money is intended to help with costs associated with entering a local or regional competition like application fee, travel, instrument repair/maintenance, and/or coaching. Honorable mention and runner-up awards are at the discretion of the jury and may not necessarily be designated.
Grand Prize $1,000
Runner-up $500
Honorable mention $250
Rader Young Artist $150


Is this a solo or chamber music competition?

This is a solo competition. The Director of Education will offer assistance to any Rader Young Artist who is interested in creating a chamber music group for the 23-24 academic year but there is no guarantee of that experience.

What is a Rader Young Artist (RYA)?

A Rader Young Artist is anyone that has advanced to the final round of the Rader Young Artist Competition. After the competition, the Director of Education will meet with each RYA to discuss the following questions:
  1. What local/regional competition would the RYA like to pursue?
  2. Can the RYA participate in the masterclass series?
  3. What would the RYA like to perform/create for the social media feature?

What can I use the prize money for?

The goal of the prize money is to provide merit-based support to those musicians most likely to benefit from participating in additional competitions. The funds will be paid directly to parents/guardians who can use it for expenses such as application fees, travel, music lessons, and/or instrument repair. No documentation of these expenses is necessary.

What instruments and ages can apply?

Violin, viola, cello, and piano students who are 18 or younger may apply this year.

Rader Young Artist Competition

Complete this form if you would like to participate in the 2023 Rader Young Artist Competition. There is no fee for applications submitted before October 15th, 2023. Any application submitted after the deadline may not be accepted and will be charged a $25 late application fee.

    Homeschool students should enter the district of residence (i.e. Kirkwood or homeschool, Kirkwood)

    Requirements for repertoire

    Each contestant is required to play two contrasting works. In the first round each player gets a total of 5 minutes and in the final round each player gets a total of 10 minutes. The monitor will begin the timer when each contestant starts playing and will cut the contestant off after 5 minutes including the time taken between pieces. Carefully consider the excerpts you choose to play. Do not include lengthy tutti sections. It is okay to start or stop an excerpt in the middle of a section or phrase if that is the best way to make sure you are under the time limit. You do not need to play an equal amount of time on each solo. For example, you can play 4 minutes of a concerto and then 1 minute of Bach or any other combination that you feel makes the best presentation.

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