Each year, the International Clarinet Association offers three performance-based competitions: the High School Competition, Orchestral Audition Competition, and Young Artist Competition.
Here are some tips and pieces of advice to help you prepare for these competitions:
- Start preparing in advance. The ICA releases the details of each competition, including repertoire and application information, several months in advance, so don’t wait until the last minute to begin your preparation. Purchase and begin practicing the music as soon as it is announced so you can have a better recording.
- Create a practice schedule. In order to best prepare for any competition, you should create a detailed practice schedule to help you achieve your musical goals and stay on track during your preparation. Include ample time to prepare and perfect each piece of the required repertoire.
- Enlist an extra set of ears. As you prepare the required repertoire, perform it for family, friends, teachers, and anyone else who can offer constructive criticism to help you continue improving.
- Read the application information carefully. Make sure you submit all required application materials and follow all instructions and application procedures.
- Allow ample time for recording. In order to have the best recording possible, allow yourself plenty of time to record each required work. It’s always a good idea to schedule in extra recording time to do additional takes (if necessary).
- Do not wait until the last minute to apply. Submit your application well in advance just in case you encounter any technical difficulties.
- Make sure you are available during ClarinetFest. The semi-final and final rounds of each competition will be held during ClarinetFest, so make sure you are available for this should you be selected to advance to the live rounds.
- Encourage your friends to apply! These competitions attract talented musicians from around the world, so share the competition information with any of your clarinet friends who you think should apply.
- Listen to the live rounds. Even if you are not selected to advance to the live rounds at ClarinetFest, it is still a great opportunity to hear the semi-finalists and finalists and cheer them on at ClarinetFest!
For specific information about each competition, please visit our competitions page.
Good luck with your preparation!