Concerto Competition

The 22nd Annual Immanuel and Helen B. Olshan Foundation
Concerto Competition
January 16, 2021


 Click here for Application

 Click here for Rules and Regulations




General Information

  1. The Concerto Competition will take place on Saturday, January 16, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. at the Virtuosi of Houston Studio in the Memorial City Mall.
  2. The Concerto Competition is open to all fully enrolled instrumentalists of Virtuosi of Houston who have no more than two excused absences in the season’s first rehearsal cycle, have no unexcused absences, and owe no tuition or other debt to Virtuosi of Houston.
  3. All contestants shall be assigned to compete in one of two categories: Strings/Harp or Winds/Percussion/Keyboard.
  4. The order of competing contestants shall be determined by a drawing, and all contestants will be notified one week before the Competition.
  5. Previous Concerto Competition First Prize winners are not eligible to compete for one full year after
  6. Winners of the Concerto Competition, except for Graduating Seniors, must enroll in Virtuosi of Houston for the following two years, or until they complete their high school education, to claim their full prize money. Returning Virtuosi concerto competition winners will receive 20% of their prize the year they win.  The remaining 80% will be evenly divided at the end of each of the next two following years upon successful participation with the Virtuosi of Houston, or until they graduate from high school, whichever comes first.  All years are based on the Virtuosi of Houston fiscal year which extends from July 1st to June 30th.
  7. The music selection for the concerto competition must be able to be performed by the current Virtuosi of Houston chamber orchestra, and approved by the Maestros.
  8. Application forms and $50.00 application fee must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. Monday, January 31, 2021  Mail forms and fee to:

Virtuosi of Houston
303 Memorial City, Suite #235
Houston, TX 77024


  1. Each contestant shall present a movement of a concerto or a concert piece of contestant’s choice.
  2. The chosen composition shall be for a solo instrument and orchestra, or multiple instruments and
  3. All contestants shall perform their selections from memory.
  4. All contestants shall provide their own accompanists. Teachers/instructors may not accompany their own students.
  5. All contestants shall supply 5 copies of the scores for the judges.
  6. All compositions shall be chosen from repertoire where the instrumentation of the orchestra accompaniment reflects the instrumentation of Virtuosi of Houston: 2 flutes (interchangeable with piccolo), 2 oboes (interchangeable with English horns), 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 French horns, 2 trumpets, 2 percussion instruments, harp, keyboard instrument (harpsichord, piano, and organ), and strings.
  1. Orchestra parts should be readily available through regular commercial channels, or otherwise provided by the contestant.
  2. All selected compositions are subject to the approval of the Virtuosi of Houston maestros, and their decision is final.
  3. Proper attire is required.



  1. The judges shall be selected from among prominent instrumentalists, conductors, and educators; representing string, woodwind, brass and percussion areas.
  2. The judges shall not be affiliated with Virtuosi of Houston.
  3. The judges reserve the right not to award any single prize, or any prizes at all.
  4. The decision of the judges is final.



  1. There shall be two (2) First Prize winners, one in the Strings/Harp category, and one in the Winds/Percussion/Keyboard category. Each First Prize winner shall be offered an opportunity to perform his/her/their winning selection as soloist(s) with Virtuosi of Houston. The scheduling of the performance shall be negotiated with the Virtuosi of Houston maestros. In addition, each First Prize winner shall receive a scholarship in the amount of $2,500. In case the winning selection is for multiple instruments, the scholarship shall be divided evenly among all performers of this composition.
  2. There shall be two (2) Second Prize winners (one in each category) receiving a scholarship in the amount of $1,500 each.
  3. Third, Fourth, and Fifth Prize winners will be chosen from both categories based on the overall ranking from both categories. Thus there will be only one Third Prize winner receiving a scholarship in the amount of $1,000; only one Fourth Prize winner receiving a scholarship in the amount of $750; and only one Fifth Prize winner receiving a scholarship in the amount of $500. The rule of split scholarship awards for multiple instruments applies for Second, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Prize winners as well.
  4. Awarded scholarships must be requested in writing to Virtuosi of Houston and used within a three-year period. Prior to receiving any competition funds, reimbursement for any financial assistance awarded from Virtuosi of Houston for tuition and/or group travel must be paid. Then any remaining balance can be used for the following options:
  5. To pay teachers for private music instruction
  6. To pay music companies or individuals for the purchase of instruments or instrumental accessories
  7. To pay for participation in summer music camps or festivals
  8. To pay for further education at university music schools and/or music conservatories.

Requested funds will be paid directly to the above institution or persons.  Virtuosi of Houston’s Board of Directors will be the final authority in determining whether the organization or persons to which the payment is requested to be paid meets the above requirements.

The contestant may request a delay in payment, which must be approved by the Virtuosi of Houston Board of Directors and maestros.