81st EDITION: Woodwinds, Brass and Voice


The OSM Competition team is following the development of the COVID-19 situation and currently evaluating options for the 2020 edition.

At this time, the application period is suspended and postponed to a future date. Stay informed by checking the OSM website and our Facebook page.

Focusing this year on Woodwinds, Brass and Voice from November 24 to 28, 2020, the 81st edition of Canada’s largest national performance competition will award more than $100,000 in prizes and grants to the most talented young Canadian musicians. These will include cash prizes from $2,500 to $15,000concert engagements including a solo performance with Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal and other important Canadian and international presenters, a promotional recording, as well as training scholarships.


Young Canadian musicians have until May 20, 2020, to submit their registration materials, including the video recordings for the preliminary round.


See the rules and regulations


Woodwinds*: Competitors aged 25 years and under on December 1st, 2020

Brass**: Competitors aged 25 years and under on December 1st, 2020

Voice : Competitors aged 30 years and under on December 1st, 2020


* Woodwinds admitted: flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, saxophone.

** Brass admitted : trumpet, horn, trombone (alto and tenor), bass trombone, tuba.


Registration form will be available online as of April 15, 2020.



  • Created in 1940
  • National competition since 1963
  • All the instruments of the orchestra, as well as voice, are featured on a rotating basis over a three-year cycle.
    2016 : strings and organ
    2017 : woodwinds, brass and voice
    2018 : piano and harp
  • The OSM Manulife Competition is one of the only Canadian competition to offer four categories of prizes :
    cash prizes
    scholarships, offering tuition and accommodation at Canada’s leading summer academies
    profesional recordings
    concert opportunities all around Canada, including the privilege to play with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal
  • An important platform for young Canadian artists wishing to participate in international competitions.

Among its 350 past winners:

Jan Lisiecki(piano-2009), just signed a recording contract with Deutsche Grammophon for five CDs

Andrew Wan(violin-2007), Current concertmaster of the OSM

James Ehnes(violin-1992)

Karina Gauvin(voice -1987) / Soprano

Louis Lortie(piano-1972)

Angela Hewitt(piano-1969)

André Laplante(piano-1968)

Janina Fialkowska(piano-1967)

Joseph Rouleau(voice -1949) / Bass

Léopold Simoneau(voice -1944) / Tenor

Former jury members:

Kent Nagano, OSM musical director and conductor since 2006

Laurent Bayle, President and Executive Director of Cité de la Musique and Philarmonie de Paris

Charles Dutoit, OSM musical director and conductor (1977-2002)

Salvatore Accardo, Violonist

Jean-Efflam Bavouzet,Concert pianist

Michel Béroff, Pianist

Earl Blackburn, Senior Vice President (Opus 3 Artists)

Jean-Pierre Brossmann, General Manager of the Théâtre du Châtelet (1998 to 2006)

Grace Bumbry, Soprano

Xavier de Maistre, Concert Harpist

Alan Fletcher, President and CEO of the Aspen Music Festival and School

Henry Fogel, President of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (1985-2003)

Lawrence Foster, Conductor and Music Director of the Opéra et Orchestre National de Montpellier Languedoc-Roussillon.

Ida Haendel, Violonist

Charles Hamlen, Chairman of IMG

Welz Kauffman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Ravinia Festival in Chicago

Jeffrey Khaner, Principal Flute of The Philadelphia Orchestra

Ralph Henry Kirshbaum, Cellist

André Laplante, Pianist

Sid McLauchlan, Producer for Deutsche Grammophon

Mervon Mehta, Executive director of the Performing Arts division, Royal Conservatory of Toronto

Matthias Naske, Artistic Director of the Wiener Konzerthaus

Benjamin Pasternak, Pianist, Peabody Institure, John Hopkins University

Régis Pasquier, Violinist

Françoise Pollet, Soprano

Renata Scotto,Soprano

Barry Shiffman, Director of Music Programs at the Banff Centre and Associate Dean of the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music

Bramwell Tovey, Music Director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra

Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, cellist

Matías Tarnopolsky, Director of Administration and Programming of the Cal Performances, University of California, Berkeley.


For several years, close to thirty Orchestra musicians have generously accepted to serve as mentors to the young contestants competing in the semifinals and finals. This program allows young candidates to benefit from the support and advice of professional musicians, an initiative which further adds to the enriching and formative experience that is the OSM Competition.

List of the 2010 to 2017 editions mentors

Vincent Boilard, Associated oboe

Alain Desgagné, Associated clarinet

Albert Brouwer, Associated flute

Pierre Beaudry, Principal bass-trombone

Marc Béliveau, Violin

Denis Bluteau, Associate principal flute

Anna Burden, Associate cello

Russell De Vuyst, Associate trumpet

Serge Desgagnés, Principal percussion

Marianne Dugal, Second associate concertmaster

Michael Dumouchel, 2nd clarinet and E-flat clarinet

Andrew Dunsmore, Percussion (2011-2012 Season)

Victor Fournelle-Blain, Viola 2nd assistant

Sofia Gentile, Viola

Dina Gilbert, OSM assistant conductor (2013-2016)

Esther Gonthier, Rehearsal-pianist of the OSM

Luis Grinhauz, Assistant concertmaster

Neal Gripp, Principal violist

Olga Gross, keyboards

Mathieu Harel, associate bassoon

Amy Horvey, trumpet

Austin Howle, principal tuba

Timothy Hutchins, Principal flute

Sylvie Lambert, Cello

Jacques Lavallée, Associate-timpani and percussionist (1990-2011)

Vivian Lee, Second trombone

Stéphane Lévesque, Principal bassoon

Alison Mah-Poy, Violin

Andrei Malashenko, Principal timpani

Paul Merkelo, Principal trumpet

Dennis Miller, Principal tuba (1989-2014)

André Moisan, Principal saxophone and bass-clarinet

Sylvain Murray, Cello

Pierre-Vincent Plante, Principal english horn

Natalie Racine, Viola

Alexander Reid, Principal second violin

Richard Roberts, Concertmaster

Jean-Sébastien Roy, First violin

Gary Russell, 2nd assistant cello

Hugues Tremblay, percussion

Andrew Wan, Concertmaster

Ali Kian Yazdanfar, Principal bass

Alexa Zirbel, 2nd oboe

John Zirbel, Principal horn