New International “Young Artist Opera and Oratorio Competition” to take place on July 29, 2018, in Hermoupolis, Syros, Greece: Grand/Gold Prize includes a concert in historic Carnegie Hall. Now accepting applications.

New International “Young Artist Opera and Oratorio Competition” to take place on July 29, 2018, in Hermoupolis, Syros, Greece: Grand/Gold Prize includes a concert in historic Carnegie Hall. Now accepting applications.

MidAmerica Productions and MidAm International of New York, and The Festival of the Aegean of Hermoupolis, Syros, Greece, announce the first-ever annual worldwide International Festival of the Aegean “Young Artist Opera and Oratorio Competition,” which will be held on Sunday, July 29, 2018, at the Apollo Theater on the Island of Syros, Greece. The Festival of the Aegean is in cooperation with the Municipality of Syros, Mayor George Marangos, and Vice-Mayor Thomai Mendrinou.

The competition is open to singers of all voice types between the ages of 22 and 32. Applicants are invited to submit an audition application and a two-page resume along with a YouTube or MP3 upload including one aria and one oratorio selection performed within the past 12 months, all to: opera.competition@midamerica-music.com.

The Grand/Gold Prize will be 5000 Euros, an appearance in historic Carnegie Hall in the Spring of 2019 with the New England Symphonic Orchestra, and an appearance at the 15th Annual Festival of the Aegean in July 2019. The Silver Prize is 3000 Euros and an appearance at the 15th Annual International Festival of the Aegean in an opera production or oratorio, and the Bronze Prize is 1000 Euros and an appearance at the 15th Annual Festival of the Aegean in an opera production or oratorio.

Honorable Mentions will be given to seven artists who may be also considered for opera productions and oratorios during 2019 and 2020.

All performances in Syros at the Apollo Theater in 2019 and beyond are with the Pan-European Philharmonia of Warsaw. The Pan-European Philharmonia has been the resident orchestra at the Festival of the Aegean for the past five years.

The application deadline for the competition is December 15, 2017.

MidAmerica Productions and MidAm International

Founded by the conductor Peter Tiboris in 1983, MidAmerica Productions has presented more than 1300 choral and symphonic concerts worldwide, including 1000 concerts in New York and 575 in Carnegie Hall – making MidAmerica the most prolific presenter of vocal music concerts in Carnegie Hall’s history. During its 35 years, MidAmerica Productions has brought together conductors, soloists, and choral and symphonic ensembles from the U.S. and abroad to appear at New York’s top venues, including Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, as well as Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. Additionally, MidAmerica Productions has presented concerts in numerous U.S. cities and in countries throughout the world, including Greece, England, Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Italy, France, and Russia. In 2012, Peter Tiboris founded MidAm International to produce MidAmerica Productions’ concerts abroad.

During 2017, MidAmerica Productions produced its regular season of concerts in Carnegie Hall, and MidAm International presented concerts in Florence, Vienna, and Syros, Greece [as the 13th Annual Festival of the Aegean]. In 2018, MidAmerica Productions and MidAm International will produce concerts in Carnegie Hall, Florence, Verona, Vienna, Salzburg, Syros, Paris, Lisbon, Porto, and Macao, China.

Festival of the Aegean

The Island of Syros in Greece
The Island of Syros in Greece

The International Festival of the Aegean was founded by Greek-American conductor Peter Tiboris in 2005 and was presented under the auspices of his company, MidAmerica Productions, the world’s foremost independent producer of vocal music concerts in Carnegie Hall, through 2012. Since 2013, the Festival has been presented by MidAm International. Every July, hundreds of musical, dance, and theatrical artists gather on the sunny Island of Syros, primarily at the Apollo Theater, to perform two weeks of opera, oratorios, symphonies, dance and theater. In 2011, the Festival of the Aegean received the honorary distinction award as “Best cultural organization operating in the wider region of Greece in 2011” by the Music Critics of the Union of Greek Theatre and Music Critics. The award was given to the Festival for its presentation of Verdi’s La Traviata, conducted by Peter Tiboris and directed by Renato Zanella in July 2011, at the Seventh Annual Festival in Syros, Greece; and for the Festival’s wider contribution of important productions and international standards to the continuation of the musical and cultural tradition of the island of Syros since the 19th Century.

Syros – Ermoupolis

Syros is a Greek island in the Cyclades and the capital of the Cycladic Islands in the Aegean Sea. It is located 78 nautical miles (144 km) southeast of Athens. The Island has 25,000 inhabitants and during the summer, the population grows to 40,000. The largest towns are Ermoupoli, Ano Syros, and Vari. Ermoupoli is the capital of Syros. Ermoupoli stands on a site with neoclassical buildings, old mansions and white-washed houses on the surrounding hills, cascading down to the harbor. A monumental Town Square and the historic Apollo Theater are the main features at the center of town, with numerous other important buildings surrounding them. The City Hall, where Miaoulis Square lies ringed with cafes and with seating areas under palm trees, has a grandeur all of its own. The “City of Hermes” has numerous magnificent churches, the most interesting of which are Metamorphosis, Koimisis, St. Demetrius, Three Hierarchs, Anastasis, Evangelistria, and St. Nicholas. The Archeological Museum has a collection of notable finds and the Municipal Library contains numerous interesting and rare editions. The quarter of the town know as Vapporis, where the sea captains lived, is of special interest. It has a great harbor and 12 incredible beaches.

The Apollo Theater (“La Piccola Scala”)

The Apollo Theater (also known as “La Piccola Scala”) in Hermoupolis, the main town of the island of Syros, is an important landmark and a symbol of its financial and cultural prosperity since the mid-19th century. Constructed between 1862-1864, it is the oldest opera house in Greece and the 11th oldest in Europe. It is widely believed that the Apollo Theater was modeled after the famous La Scala di Milano Opera House in Milan and the Teatro di San Carlo of Naples. The inaugural performance was Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi on April 20, 1864 after which opera and theater performances became the center of the cultural life in Hermoupolis. The Apollo Theater played host to numerous Greek and Italian theatrical and operatic troupes, performing the most famous and popular plays, operas and operettas of their time.

For further information about the competition and application procedure, email opera.competition@midamerica-music.com or call Ms. Zui Tao, Competition Administrator, 212-239-0205, ext. 293.

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