Annual Concerto Competition

Application Opens:
Monday, August 12, 2024
Application Deadline:
Friday, September 6, 2024

The CYS Annual Concerto Competition will be held on date TBD, starting at 5:00 PM.

Any CYS member in the Symphony who is in good standing is eligible to compete. Good standing means the member’s balance must be paid in full and the member must adhere to attendance policies throughout the season. Former winners are not eligible to compete the subsequent year. Former runners-ups are eligible to compete.


  • Members must complete the application form and submit the chosen piece to the CYS Manager. Deadline: Friday, September 6, 2024.

Music Selection:

  • The chosen piece must be one movement from a standard concerto, or solo/ensemble selection that has orchestral accompaniment parts available. Questions should be directed to private teachers/conductors.
  • If the CSO does not already own the orchestral accompaniment parts for the selected piece and they must be purchased or rented, the selected winners agree to pay half the cost to rent or purchase the orchestral parts for any amount over $500. The CYS Manager can help determine the cost of rental/purchase once a selection has been submitted.
  • The CSO reserves the right to suggest a different piece for performance.
  • Purchased music will remain the property of the CSO.
  • The chosen piece should be no longer than 10 minutes.


  • Competition times and instructions, including a scheduled warm-up time, will be sent to each applicant.
  • The competition takes place in person.
  • Members must perform one movement from a standard concerto, or solo/ensemble selection that has orchestral accompaniment parts available.
  • Members must compete on the instrument that they play in the CYS, and they must compete with the piece of music that they will perform (if selected as a winner).
  • Members should furnish five (5) printed copies of their selection (including accompaniment) for the judges on the day of the competition.
  • It is highly recommended that the member competes with a piano accompanist.  Members are responsible for providing their own accompanist and for ensuring the accompanist knows the time and location of the audition.  If you need recommendations for an accompanist, please email the CYS Manager.

Competition Winner:

  • The winner of the competition will be announced approximately one week after the competition.
  • Judges will select one winner and based on performance standards reserve the right to not declare a winner.
  • The winner will be featured at a CSO concert.

concerto competition winner

At the age 5, Shepherd began studying cello at the University of Texas String Project where he was fortunate to study with several wonderful teachers including Daniel Kopp. His family moved to Chattanooga in 2020, and he began studying with the formidable Annie Camp. While in middle school at Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts, he participated in both the Intermediate and Advanced Strings Orchestras and served as the Principal Cellist in the Lower East Tennessee Junior Orchestra Clinic. He currently attends the Baylor School and serves as the Principal Cellist in the Chattanooga Youth Symphony. Shepherd is the second of seven brothers and enjoys, in addition to Dvorak and Scriabin, Alice in Chains, Seal, and the Bee Gees.