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Rising Stars Competition

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Rising Stars Competition 2021

The School of Music announces the Rising Stars competition, an offering in lieu of the annual Concerto Competition. The purpose of this event is to highlight outstanding music students in an online recorded presentation of juried recordings of solo works or concertos. Submissions will be received according to the schedule detailed below, and a final presentation of the recorded works in an online event will be presented in the spring semester. An initial screening of video submissions will be conducted by faculty representatives of each area in the School of Music. The final rounds will be evaluated by guest adjudicators, a three-member panel of esteemed musicians in the field. Up to three undergraduate and three graduate students will be selected.

Social distancing of 6 to 10 feet apart must be adhered to should a soloist wish to record in a shared space with an accompanist. Only two people are allowed in a shared space at one time. Wearing of masks is obligatory, except for singers, wind, and brass instruments.


Timeline: February and March 2021

Saturday, February 13
Application, video recording, and score (pdf) submissions due
Saturday, February 20Area results are sent to Dr. Ham (
Thursday, February 25Semi-Final results announced
Thursday, March 4Final round results announced
During the month of March, final winners have an opportunity to re-record their performance in the halls



The Rising Star Competition is divided into two divisions: Undergraduate and Graduate. Open to only full-time music majors who are currently studying with a member of the OU applied faculty in undergraduate division (junior through senior) or graduate division at the OU School of Music.

Contestants must:

  • Have full-time student status (Undergrads: 12+ hours; Graduates, Graduate with GA; 6 hours; All other Graduates commensurate to 9 hours and up) at the School of Music. Graduate students not falling into the previous categories may petition the committee to participate.
  • Have been fully admitted to a School of Music degree program. The eligibility of students who are accepted to the School of Music conditionally, will be at the discretion of the Concerto Competition Committee.
  • Be making satisfactory progress towards the degree program: To be in good standing with the College and eligible to graduate, students must have a minimum GPA of 2.50 (3.0 for Graduate students) as of spring semester (prior to competition) in both their combined GPAs.
  • Be a Junior in class standing or above and have the teacher’s permission to compete.
  • Be matriculating with normal progress and studying in the degree program at the School of Music at the time of the competition and concert.
  • Be enrolled in applied lessons the semester of the competition.
  • Previous concerto competition winners are allowed to compete.


Music (all divisions)

  • Any type of work for solo voice or instrument with or without accompaniment
  • Concerti for solo instrument (a soloist and a pianist)
  • Time limit on repertoire: 5-10 min. in length for both divisions
  • Memorization is not required in all divisions.
  • Scores must be uploaded in the entry form.


Recording Guidelines

  • A video recording of a virtual performance must be submitted. Submission formats include, but are not limited to, YouTube and Dropbox.
  • Students may record in one of the performance halls or in another location.
  • If using piano accompaniment, the two performers may choose to record their parts separately and merge them in a video software, constituting a virtual collaboration.
  • No edits may be made, including cuts, splices, equalization, or addition of reverberation.
  • Location of the recorded submission or limitation of acoustics will not be a factor in the evaluation of videos.
  • All performers must adhere to social distancing of 6 to 10 feet and wear masks. Singers, wind, brass and performers are not required to wear masks.
  • Recordings must be submitted with the online application


Rising Stars Competition Winners

  • Decision of the judges is final.
  • The School of Music will present the winners’ videos on a pre-recorded, live-streamed event in Spring 2021 (date TBA).



Entry form, score (pdf), recordings are due by 5:00pm on Saturday, February 13, 2021.


Competition Committee

Questions may be directed to any of the following members of the Concerto Committee:

Jeongwon Ham, Co-Chair
David Howard
Gregory Lee
Adam Pajan
Lorne Richstone
Jonathan Shames
Valerie Watts, Co-Chair