American Traditions Competition

Posted by:  Savannah Music Festival


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With up to $30,000.00 in prize money, The American Traditions Competition truly celebrates the vocal music repertoire of the United States. America’s musical genres represent excellence and artistic integrity and our Competition seeks to increase appreciation and celebration of these genres. In its 13th year and with an average attendance of 2000 people, the event will take place in Savannah, Georgia from March 20 - March 25, 2006.

Submitting to the Competition:

Applicants will submit 3 songs (no longer than 15 minutes total) by American composers that will be judged for consideration to participate in the Quarterfinal round of the competition. Singers must perform the same representative selections as the songs submitted (and in the same order as submitted) and must cover each of the following categories:

Category 1:
Spirituals/Opera/ Art Songs/Songs of Johnny Mercer

Category 2:
Broadway/Jazz/Blues/Country/Western/ Bluegrass

Category 3:
Hollywood/Gospel/Hymns/Early American (prior to 1900)

Applicants will also be asked to submit information (but not recordings) of the songs they will perform if they advance to future rounds of the competition. You will be asked to submit information for each selection including: Song title, Composer, Category represented (must have a selection for each category) and Accompaniment.

Rounds of the Competition:

As many as 30 contestants will advance to the Quarterfinals and will present a live performance of the exact same material in the same order as submitted on the preliminary round submission.

Up to 12 contestants will be selected to advance to the Semifinals and will perform the selections submitted on your application.

Up to 6 contestants will be chosen for the Finals and will present a program using any remaining material from their original program.

Submissions will be judged by local music experts. Judges for Quarter/Semi/Final Rounds are James Bignon, Steven Blier, Elisabeth Howard, Jeannette LoVetri and Benjamin Matthews.

Special note and reminder to all applicants:

*All competition rounds are no more than 15 minutes. Contestants will be penalized if they exceed the 15-minute time allocation.

*Each round must include selections from all three categories.

*Contestants must perform songs composed by American composers.

*If selected to advance to the next round, you may not repeat a song.

*Accompaniment will be only piano (or piano, bass & drums).

*Accompanists will be provided at no cost OR you may bring your own accompanists at your own expense.


All contestants receive one cash award. Quarterfinalists will receive, $250; Semifinalists will receive $500; and Finalists will receive $1000.
The first place winner of the whole competition will win the Oxnard Gold Medal ($10,000); the second place winner will win the Courtney Knight Gaines Foundation Silver Medal $5000; and the third place winner will win the Stanton Bronze Medal $2500.

Please note: Cover songs and original songs are welcome as long as they fit into the competition's categories.