Saturday, October 9, 2010


The American Prize—Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award in Vocal Performance is a unique competition—a valuable career builder in which all semi-finalists, finalists and winners derive benefit, regardless of who the final winners may be. The competition is judged solely through recorded performances. There is no live competition. There are no age limits.

Semi-finalists, finalists and winners of The American Prize receive recognition and reward as a result of their selection. We announce semi-finalists, finalists and winners to the national media, and also directly to the contacts you provide—like local newspapers or radio stations, schools, teachers, conductors or managers, and publish the names on our blog; all semi-finalists, finalists and winners receive personalized certificates. Finalists also receive unbiased written evaluations of their performances, authored by noted professionals in the field, evaluations applicants may then utilize in any way that may be valuable to them. Winners receive certificates, evaluations and cash prizes and are profiled on our website with bios and photos, along with links to their winning performances uploaded to our You Tube channel. Cash prizes range from $100—$500.

Although the benefits of participating in The American Prize Schorr Awards are more than financial, the size of the cash awards in each division (opera/operetta or art song) is based on the categories in each particular competition (gifted high school, community, pre-professional, professional), and on the number of applicants, but in no case is the prize less than $100.

Applicants submit DVD, CD or VHS video recordings of their performances in either the Opera/Operetta or Art Song divisions, and select the category that best describes them—whether a professional, pre-professional, community or gifted high school vocalist. The Art Song and Opera/Operetta categories are judged separately: if you plan to apply for both, please be sure we receive all the required materials as if you were applying to two separate competitions. Applications must be postmarked by the extended deadline date of November 15, 2010. No materials will be returned.

Complete rules, requirements
for the recordings, plus application forms, fee and prize information may be found on our website: The most up-to-date information about deadlines, judges and more may be found here on our blog:

The American Prize competitions are open to U.S. citizens living here or abroad, or to non-citizens currently living, working or studying in the U.S.A. The American Prize follows strict timelines for the announcement of semi-finalists, finalists and winners. Please see the website. There are no refunds unless a competition is canceled, in which case application fees will be returned. The decisions of the judges are final.

You need not prepare a special tape
for The American Prize. Previous recordings, either made in front of an audience or in a studio session, are acceptable, provided they include the minimum requirements for the competition as stated in the rules.

For any questions the website or blog do not seem to address, please email David Katz, chief judge, at or

Founded in 2009, The American Prize, a series of national, nonprofit competitions in the performing arts unique in scope and structure, was first awarded this past spring to orchestras, choruses and conductors nationwide. Profiles of past winners may be found on the website. More than $2000 in cash prizes were awarded.

The Schorr Awards honor the memory of Friedrich Schorr, the greatest Wagnerian baritone of his age, and his wife, Virginia, who taught studio voice at the Manhattan and Hartt School of Music for nearly fifty years. Among their students were MET opera stars Cornell MacNeil, Ezio Flagello and Arthur Thompson. For more about the long history of the Schorr voice competitions, please visit the blog:

The American Prize is administered by Hat City Music Theater, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)3 performing arts organization based in Danbury, Connecticut.

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