Youth Concerto Competition

Our annual Youth Concerto Competition commenced in 1988. The aim of the competition is to give young musicians the opportunity to play with a symphony orchestra under concert conditions.

See the list of previous competition winners

Read about the 2018 Competition


Applications for the 2020 competition will be open in April 2020.


The 2019 Competition Concert featuring the six finalists will take place at 2.30pm on Sunday 8th September 2019, at Northcote Town Hall Arts Centre.

Thanks to everyone who participated in the 2019 competition, and also to Bernies Music Land for providing the location for the auditions and help on the night. There were over 30 entries, all with a very high standard.

Competition rules 2019

Age Limit
The Competition is open to players of orchestral instruments and piano who are 18 or under on 1 July 2019.

A complete work with orchestral accompaniment or selected movements may be submitted. Maximum duration should be about 15 minutes. For unusual works please check the availability of orchestral parts: if these cannot be obtained the orchestra reserves the right to request a change of work.


  • Applications open Monday 29 April 2019
  • Applications closing date Friday 24 May 2019
  • Late entries may be accepted at the discretion of the Secretary
  • An audition fee of $10 will be charged on the evening to defray the orchestra’s costs


  • Students should prepare one or more sections of their selected work to demonstrate their potential as a performer.
  • All entrants are required to attend an audition
  • Students should provide their own accompanists (assistance with names is available)
  • The audition time will be about 7 minutes
  • Auditions will take place during the evening on 6th June at Bernie’s Music Land in Ringwood

At least 5 entrants will be selected to perform with the Preston Symphony Orchestra in the competition concert on 8th September 2019.

Previous Winners & Finalists ‘Lockout’
The aim of the competition is to provide the opportunity to perform as a soloist with an orchestra to as many young musicians as possible. Hence there is a ‘lock out’ period for previous winners and finalists before they can enter again: players who have won may not enter in the following two competitions after winning, and finalists may not enter the following year. This does not apply for entrants on a different instrument.

Preston Symphony Orchestra will supply the adjudicator(s) whose decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into.

The winner receives $500. Other finalists receive $100.
As well as the overall winner’s prize, there is an Audience Prize, chosen by ballot at the end of the concert.

Any queries should be directed to: