About the Competition

The Australian Concerto and Vocal Competition is an internationally recognised competition held annually in Townsville.  It began life as a piano concerto competition in 1980 and has grown significantly in size and reputation, with the event now covering vocal, instrumental and school age sections.

Held over five days in July, the Competition attracts outstanding musicians from around the world who perform works from concerto and opera repertoires with professional accompanists. Entrants have come from places as far afield as Moscow, Poland, New Zealand and South Korea.

Its prestige as a national event is now well established with many of our Open instrumentalists being finalists and winners of the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performers Awards.

The Australian Concerto & Vocal Competition offers a unique opportunity for emerging musicians to be stimulated and extended.  The  Competition adjudicators are recognised both nationally and internationally for their expertise and interest in encouraging musical development.

Both the Open Instrumental Section and the Open Vocal Section are conducted in preliminary stages with all entrants performing their repertoires in full. The adjudicators of these sections will each choose three finalists to compete for the major prizes in the Gala Finals Concerts.    

Held Annually in July.   Entries open in January.
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Sections

Age Limit: Open to all ages.
Open to all instrumentalists, excluding 1st Prize Winners from the past 4 competition years.
Entrants must present a complete work written specifically for soloist and orchestra, soloist and string ensemble or soloist and concert band. 
All items for this section will be performed with piano as  accompaniment.
The open section will consist of two stages – preliminary and final. Three performers will be chosen from the preliminary stage to compete in the finals.
Time Limit: 15-45 minutes
Entry Fee:  $85

Prizes:   

1st   Townsville City Council Prize $4000 plus John Hopkins Performance Fellowship Award Value $1000+ and partnership with Barrier Reef Orchestra (see below)

2nd   Dr Bill Williams OBE Memorial Prize $2000
jointly sponsored by the Townsville City Council and Australian Concerto & Vocal Competition

3rd    $1000 

Age Limit: Open to all ages.
Open to all vocalists excluding 1st prize winner from previous year.
Entrants must prepare a program of EITHER four contrasting arias (with or without recitative) from Opera/Oratorio OR a work/s for Voice and Orchestra eg Mozart’s Motet, a Bach Cantata or Four Last Songs by R Strauss.

Time limit: 20-30 minutes
Entry Fee: $75

Prizes:    1st $1500 

2nd $1000   3rd $500
sponsored by Ishiyama Foundation

If performers intend to enter Section 1 as well, they must choose a new composition for this section.

Age Limit: Open to all ages.

This section is open to all instrumentalists excluding previous 1st prize winners.
Entrants may play one or more movements from the same concerto or work written specifically for soloist and orchestra, soloist and string ensemble or soloist and concert band.
All items for this section will be performed with piano as  accompaniment.
Performers may participate on more than one instrument should they so choose.

Time Limit: 10-25 minutes
Entry Fee:  $65

Prizes:   
Loloma Jewellers Prizes   1st $500   2nd $300   3rd $200

Age Limit: Open to all ages.
Open to all vocalists excluding previous 1st prize winners. Entrants must prepare a program in two parts.
PART A: (to be sung first) The major part must be an aria from an opera or oratorio (with or without recitative), or a substantial work for voice and orchestra.
PART B: The minor part should consist of one or more folk songs or art songs (not lieder).

Time Limit: 10-15 minutes
Entry Fee:  $65

Prizes:    Beth Honeycombe Prizes   1st $500   2nd $300   3rd $200

If performers intend to enter Section 1 and/or Section 3, they must choose a new composition for this section.  If only part of a composition was performed in Section 3, other movements from that composition may be presented in this section.

Age Limit: Entrants must be currently attending school.

Entrants may play one or more movements from the same concerto or work written specifically for soloist and orchestra, string ensemble or concert band.
All items for this section will be performed with piano as  accompaniment.
Performers may participate on more than one instrument should they so choose.

Time limit: 6-12 minutes
Entry Fee:  $30
Prizes:    The Townsville and District Music Teachers’ Assn Prize   1st $100   2nd $75   3rd $50

Ensemble members must be currently attending school, and may come from more than one school.

No conductor and no amplification. (Exceptions apply for bassists in guitar ensembles.)

Players may form part of more than one group.

Performance may include vocalists and/or instrumentalists.

Time Limit: 10 – 20 Minutes

Prizes:  1st $400  2nd $300  3rd $200  4th $100

Link to Entry Form.

Special Awards

Joy Rutledge Award: Most Outstanding Musician from Nth Qld   $500
sponsored by Mrs Dinie Gaemers 

Rev Norton Challenor Award & Perpetual Trophy: Most Promising Vocalist  $500
sponsored by Mrs Mary Paola

Most Promising String Player  $250
sponsored by AUSTA (Nth Qld Branch)

Frank Carroll Memorial Award: Most Promising Pianist $250
sponsored by Anne Brook and Alan Stephenson

Most Promising Wind/Brass Player  $250
sponsored by Arthur Florence of MusicAid

Audience Choice Award Open Vocal (Gala Concert)   $300
sponsored by Susan Grinsell Singing Studio

Audience Choice Award Open Instrumental (Gala Concert)  Music Team  $300
sponsored by TripleT Classic

Youth Development Award  $400 (Arties Music Voucher)
sponsored by Mrs Dinie Gaemers and Arties Music 

Encouragement Awards  (4 x ) sponsored by Arties Music   $50ea

Performance Opportunities for Open Instrumental Section Winners (see below)

Connecting performers with opportunities

The Australian Concerto and Vocal Competition is passionate about cultivating opportunities for musicians to expand their potential. Aside from significant cash prizes, ACVC awards two significant performance-based prizes. The John Hopkins Performance Fellowship is awarded to the winner of Section 1 Open Instrumental, along with a partnership opportunity with Barrier Reef Orchestra.

John Hopkins Performance Fellowship

The John Hopkins Performance Fellowship (JHPF), initiated by the late John Hopkins OBE AM (1927-2013), fosters musical opportunities through community engagement. John Hopkins, one of Australia’s foremost conductors and music educators was an advocate for developing musicians and community ensembles. He also had a long-running and hands-on involvement with ACVC.

In honour of John Hopkins, the ACVC endeavours to provide an opportunity for the recipient to perform as a soloist with one of Australia’s many community orchestras. However, as these orchestras’ programs are often arranged 2-3 years in advance, this is becoming difficult to arrange. Alternatively, the winner can apply for the funds for any activity focussing on his or her musical development as agreed with the ACVC committee.

Barrier Reef Orchestra Performance

Under the umbrella of NQ Ensembles Inc , Barrier Reef Orchestra (BRO) is Townsville’s premier community orchestra. BRO performs regularly and presents standard orchestral repertoire as well as new and world music. They perform under the baton of renowned local, national and international conductors.

Through their partnership with ACVC, BRO provides the winner of the Open Instrumental section the opportunity to perform as soloist in a public concert accompanied by the orchestra.

The prize also covers applicable travel and accommodation costs incurred by the winner in order to perform in Townsville.