Young Singer Competition 2021

Welcome to the HMC Young Singer Competition


The first annual Houston Masterworks Chorus Young Singer Competition was founded to encourage and feature high school juniors and seniors

who currently display potential for success in solo, classical voice performance. 


A cash prize of $1000.00 is awarded to the first place winner and $250.00 awarded to those singers placing second and third.

These prizes are in the spirit of encouraging further music study among talented singers.



  • Singers must be currently enrolled in high school.
  • Singers must have a United States Social Security Number and be United States citizens.

Registration Deadline: Friday, September 24, 2021

Competition Rules:


    1. Singers must complete the online application and upload a performance resume via our online portal.
    2. Singer’s current voice teachers must upload recommendation letters addressing vocal quality, work ethic, and career potential.
    3. Singers must pay the $25 non-refundable application fee. For special financial consideration, please email
    1. Two pieces must be submitted for the competition:
      • Classical vocal repertoire (opera, art song, oratorio, etc.)
      • One piece may be from the musical theatre repertoire. However, a musical theatre piece is not required. An operetta aria may be used as one selection in the Music theater selections for high schools singers may use published transposed keys to accommodate voice change issues only. However, any transposition must retain the composer’s intention and style of music.
    1. Operatic arias are not required. Should a competitor decide to offer an operatic aria, no more than one age-appropriate aria is recommended.
    2. At least one selection must be in a language other than English.
    3. Maximum Length of Performance: Grade 11-12, 10 minutes.
    1. Singers must submit a YouTube link of one (1) video selection. The video should be no more than the time specified above.
    2. Video entries must be submitted by 12:00 am Central time on Monday, October 1, 2021. HMC is not responsible for late or unsuccessful attempts to upload videos.
    3. Memorization of all selections is required.
    4. In light of the 10 minutes music requirement, piano preludio, piano interludes, piano music after the vocal solo is completed, and internal cuts of operettas, opera arias and music theater selections are allowed according to common performance practice. Not allowed are cuts of verses or verese of selections and in the case of strophic pieces, all verses should remain that are traditionally included.
    5. Designated winners may be asked to provide proof of age before the dispensation of prizes.
    6. Results will be announced to entrants via email by October 22, 2021. We will have an optional field for teacher’s email address to the official entry form. If there is a teacher’s email address in the form, the teacher will also receive notification of results.
    1. Accompanists are forbidden to use photocopies, however, they may use electronic copies (ebooks) after signing a release agreement with the Houston Masterworks Chorus. The use of visible photocopies or visible loose pages of any kind will be automatically disqualified. Photocopying music is illegal. The purchase of a publication does not grant the right to photocopy for rehearsal or performance with a pianist.
      Singers are responsible for the accompanist’s compliance with this strict rule. We cannot make any exceptions. Pianists must play from original publications, whether this is their preference or not. There is no other choice for this competition. We urge the use of page turners as necessary. If the pianist is playing from a digital version of the music, you may be asked by the judging panel to provide a receipt or other proof of purchase.

Video Recording Rules


  1. The performance recorded for the video entry must be acoustic and not amplified. The only microphone(s) involved should be for recording. Your voice must not be amplified.
  1. The recording must be honest and acoustic. No mixing or sound enhancement is allowed through any kind of soundboard, including at a recording studio. No reverb can be added to the recording. Be aware that if your video entry sounds as if you have added reverb or enhanced the sound in any way, even if this is not the case, the judges will question and possibly disqualify your entry.
  2. Complete introductions, interludes, etc., must be performed. All repeats must be performed.
  1. For the Young Singer Competition, your video must be titled as follows:

HMC Young Singer Competition 2021 [Your Name]

For instance:

HMC Young Singer Competition 2021 John Doe

To be explicit:

HMC(one space)Young(one space)Singer(one space)Competition 2021(one space)John(one space)Doe.

  1. In the official HMC entry form, you will be providing the link with the web address of your video posting. Please double check the link provided. Make sure that your video is set to “public” or “unlisted” and not “private.”
    1. You must sing with a live pianist in your video entry. Orchestrated accompaniments and MIDI generated backing tracks are not allowed. We will not accept unaccompanied entries. You may not accompany yourself.2
    2. The video should be in the spirit of a recital or audition. It may be shot in a home, school, church, synagogue, recital hall, or some other appropriate location, with or without an audience. Please consider the acoustics of the room. A small room with dead acoustics will not flatter a voice. We encourage you to dress appropriately, as you would for a recital or an audition.
    1. You are required to introduce yourself and your selections in the video, either verbally before your selection or with a title card before the songs. This is a simple introduction in the spirit of an audition. This introductory portion of the video entry must be limited to the following: FOR THE YOUNG SINGER COMPETITION
    • Your name
    • The composer and title of your selection (prior to each song)
    • For instance: a typical model of spoken introduction before the first selection is:
      I am __________________. I will sing “The Silver Swan” by Orlando Gibbons (Or after your name you could simply state the selection without saying ‘I will sing’)
    • Before the second selection, simply state the song title and the composer. For example:
      “Per la gloria d’adorarvi” by Giovanni Bononcini


    Take very special care to pronounce the title of your song and the composer’s name correctly.



  • First Place – $1,000.00 and opportunity to sing with Houston Masterworks Chorus at the Christmas with Masterworks, Rejoice! concert.  December 19th, 4 pm at All Saints Catholic Church
  • Second and third place – $250.00 each.
  • Ties: Should there be a tie for first place, the awards for the first and second place winners will be pooled and divided equally among the first place winners. Both will be called First Place Winners.

Special Instructions to Applicants


  • Applications must include:
    • Personal letter of interest signed by the candidate
    • CV/resume
    • Repertoire list
    • Links to videos of candidates performance
    • Names and phone numbers of three professional references