*The OSM Competition reserves the right to change the text of the rules as it deems fit and without notice.



  • The Competition is open to all Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
  • The Competition is not open to winners of an OSM Grand Prize at an earlier edition or of a First Prize with the exception of the piano and string categories, in which case candidates must appear in a different age category from the one in which they earned a First Prize.
  • Candidates agree, by applying, to abide by all Competition conditions as well as by the decisions of the Competition committee and jury, which will be final and without appeal.
  • Candidates who fail to respect one of the Competition rules are subject to disqualification without appeal.


Deadline for summiting the application form along with supporting documents is on May 17, 2019. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.

The online application form along with additional application items must be sent to the OSM no later than May 20, 2020. All incomplete files will be rejected.


Beyond the application form, the file must include:


  • An application fee of one hundred and sixty Canadian dollars ($160 CAD), non-refundable and paid by credit card (please follow the procedure included in the application form);
  • The video recording for the preliminary rounds;
  • The complete list of repertoire and timings of works submitted for the three rounds of the Competition (please follow the model provided in the application form);
  • A curriculum vitae (studies, teachers, diplomas, awards, professional experience);
  • A high-resolution headshot (minimum 300 DPI), approximately 15 cm X 20 cm, JPEG format. Photos taken with cellphones or webcams are not accepted.

It is not necessary to submit proof of Canadian citizenship or permanent residency when documents are submitted. However, contestants selected for the semifinals will be requested to do so.

Preliminary-round recording in Strings:

  • A high-quality preliminary-round video recording, filmed with a single camera (please follow the procedure suggested in the application form). It is acceptable to record the different required works in individual takes, but the recording of each work must be made unedited. The quality of the recording submitted may influence the jury’s decision. Candidates are therefore advised to use the highest level of human and technical resources available in order to submit a sound recording of good quality. No recording with orchestral accompaniment will be accepted.


  • The Competition comprises three rounds: preliminaries, semifinals and finals. Candidates may not present the same work in two different rounds.
  • The semifinals and finals are open to the public.
  • Candidates selected for the semifinals and/or the finals will be assigned an order of appearance determined by drawing lots.
  • It is up to candidates whether to perform the repeats in a work, but they must take these into account in determining the timing of their program.
  • Candidates may determine the order of their program for the semifinals, and must so advise the Competition no later than November 1st, 2020
  • Candidates must consider their performance for the semifinals as a recital or a concert and build the program with a view to demonstrating their technical and artistic skills. They must present works from different esthetics or periods, as mentioned in the repertoire requirements. The jury will take into account each performance as a whole as well as the balanced construction of the programs.
  • All equivalent works must be submitted to the Competition and approved by it.
  • Memorization: memorization of two works is compulsory for the semifinals. The concerto work in the finals must be performed from memory.
  • Candidates may leave the stage only once during the semifinal, while strictly respecting the maximum duration allotted to that round.
  • A candidate’s performance may be interrupted at the discretion of the
  • All semifinalists must provide the judges with bound copies of each of the scores before the rounds, excluding the compulsory Canadian works. Six (6) copies are required for the semifinals and eight (8) copies for the finals. Scores must be bound in the order of performance of the works for each of the judges. Paper clips and staples will not be accepted. Detailed requirements will be communicated to the candidates selected for the semifinals.
  • The winner of the OSM Grand Prize will be invited to perform as soloist with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal in May 2020, at Maison symphonique de Montréal. The repertoire performed in the concert will be determined by the OSM in collaboration with the prizewinner.


  • Candidates must forfeit to the OSM all recording, broadcasting and distribution rights of any kind together with artists’ residual rights pertaining to their performances during the Competition for a period of fifty years from the dates of the performances.
  • By completing the official application form, candidates agree to subsequent use of the recording of their performances during the Competition.


  • Candidates authorize the Orchestra to use their name and photo to make such announcements, advertisements and promotions it deems appropriate. All materials shall be free of copyright.
  • Candidates agree to remain available to meet with the sponsors, partners and managers of the Competition after performances that the Orchestra deems appropriate.
  • Candidates will grant interviews to media selected by the Orchestra to promote the concert. These media may be part of the print, radio, television or electronic press. Interviews may take place by telephone in the weeks leading up to the competition, in person during candidates’ stay in Montreal, or following the Competition.
  • Candidates agree to be briefly photographed or to participate in a short video clip filmed by the Orchestra’s public-relations team before or after their performance in the Competition.
  • Candidates agree to provide a short verbal or written testimony of their experience at the Competition and/or at Maison symphonique de montréal after the Competition.
  • Photos, video clips, interviews or testimonies may be broadcast by the Orchestra on its various communication platforms (website, social networks, newsletter, promotional kits, and concert programs).


  • Candidates may request being accompanied by an official pianist of the OSM Competition. That request must be made at the time of application.
  • Assigned pianists will provide two (2) hours of rehearsal (including acoustic test) to each semifinal candidate, as well as their services for the performances before the jury. If the candidate reaches the finals, official accompanists will provide two (2) additional hours of rehearsa (including acoustic test)l, as well as their services for the performance before the
  • The choice and assignation of the official pianist is made by the Competition. An official pianist may not accompany a semifinalist on a private basis.
  • All extra rehearsal time is at the candidate’s expense.


  • Candidates in the Strings category are free to perform with their own accompanist, at their own expense.


  • The OSM Volunteer Committee offers candidates who live outside Montreal accommodation with a host family if the request is made at the time of application. Lodging is not offered to the candidate’s circle.
  • Upon request, a semifinalist can obtain a list of hotels offering competitive rates in downtown Montreal. Candidates choosing this type of accommodation do so at their own expense. The Competition will not cover accommodation costs for anyone accompanying a semifinalist.
  • The OSM Competition will not accept a request to furnish accommodation for a candidate after September 1, 2020.


  • The candidate agrees to be free from all professional and academic activities other than those related to the Competition for its entire duration, i.e., from November 24 to 28, 2020, inclusively.
  • Candidates must be present for the launch of the Competition on November 23, for the announcement of the finalists in their category as well as the awards ceremony, on November 28, 2020.
  • Semi-formal dress is required for all official Competition events as well as for all performances before an audience.
  • For the entire duration of the Competition, any direct or indirect contact with the members of the jury is forbidden.

Winners of the OSM Grand Prize or a First Prize agree to mention that prize in their promotional tools (biography, website, etc.), and to ensure that that prize is mentioned in promotional documents (concert programs, website, liner notes, etc.) of eventual broadcasters and producers, for a period of five years from the awarding of the prize.


  • The Competition reserves the right to cancel a category should the number of candidates be deemed insufficient.
  • The jury reserves the right not to award a prize.
  • The winner of the OSM Grand Prize will be chosen by the jury, whose decision is final and without appeal.