The National Association of Teachers of Singing celebrates the art of singing through a series of competitions and programs that are designed to showcase the talented singers and performers who are soon to be rising stars in the profession. Events are held annually or biennially, many in conjunction with the NATS National Conference. Click the links below for complete information about each competition or to begin the application process.
How It Works: The long-standing tradition of regional NATS Student Auditions now offers the opportunity for the top performers in each region to compete against other top artists from around the country. Students of NATS members will begin by performing during their regional auditions. Three singers from each regional category will advance to a national online screening round, where entrants will submit a video of their performances for adjudication by a panel of national judges. Fourteen singers from each of the 14 categories (plus the Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition during conference years) will advance to the semifinal round where three singers from each category will be selected to compete in the Final round. The national semifinal and final rounds will be held during the 54th NATS National Conference in Chicago, IL in July 2016.
Entry Fee: $75
Prizes: Prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place will total at least $30,000.
Competition Dates: Online national screening begins in April 2016, with the national semifinals and finals scheduled for July 9-10, 2016, as part of the 54th NATS National Conference in Chicago, IL.
Deadline to Apply: April 23, 2016 (applications by emailed invitation only following regional auditions)
How It Works: The NATSAA competition takes place every other year in conjunction with the NATS National Conference and is open only to NATS members and students of NATS members. Preliminary competitions are held at the regional level, with one winner emerging from each of the 14 NATS regions. The 14 semifinalists then gather at the site of the NATS national conference for the final two rounds of the competition.
Entry Fee: $75
Prizes: The winner is awarded more than $13,000 in cash and prizes; the runner-up is awarded more than $6,000 in cash and prizes. Various other prizes and awards are given to participants in the competition.
Competition Dates: Preliminary regional rounds of the competition are scheduled for spring 2016, with the national semifinals and finals scheduled for July 7-8, 2016, as part of the 54th NATS National Conference in Chicago.
Deadline to Apply: Jan. 13, 2016 (Application portal will open in summer 2015)
How It Works: NATS offers a cash award, plus a performance of the winning composition at next scheduled NATS National Conference, to the composer of the winning song cycle, group of songs, or extended single song. Competition is open to any composer whose submitted work meets the prescribed requirements and who pays the competition entry fee.
Entry Fee: $50 for each entry
Prizes: The winner is awarded $2,000 plus expenses to the NATS National Conference in Chicago, July 8-12, 2016; the runner-up is awarded $1,000.
Competition Dates: Submission deadline for online applications is Dec. 1, 2015, with judging to take place in early 2014.
Deadline to Apply: Dec. 1, 2015 (Application portal will open in spring 2015)
How It Works: The National Music Theater Competition is seeking the best emerging music theater soloists, those who just need that one break to move their careers forward. To be eligible, applicants must be between ages 20-28 as of March 1, 2016. The preliminary rounds of the competition take place in New York City, Chicago, or Los Angeles in May 2016. An online video submission round is also available for participants who cannot travel to the live audition sites. Approximately 24 singers advance to the semifinal and final rounds – to be held during the NATS National Conference in Chicago, July 8-12, 2016.
Entry Fee: $90 (or $75 for students of NATS members).
Prizes: The winner is awarded more than $5,000 in prizes in addition to a concert at the next NATS National Conference; second prize is awarded more than $2,500; third prize is $1,000.
Competition Dates: Preliminary rounds of the competition are scheduled for May 2016, with the national semifinals and finals scheduled for July 8-9, 2016, as part of the 54th NATS National Conference in Chicago.
Deadline to Apply: March 15, 2016 (Application portal to open in fall 2015)