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Competition Rules & Guidelines

Bach Akademie Charlotte is the sole owner and organizer of the Carolina Bach Competition. The competition is February 12, 2022 and takes place at the Sarah Belk Gambrell Center for the Arts and Civic Engagement.

  • With the uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Bach Akademie Charlotte reserves the right to hold live or video competitions.
  • Submitting an application, recording, and application fee does not guarantee acceptance into the competition.
    The recording is a pre-screening recording and will determine acceptance into the competition.
  • Primary communication is via email. The application must have accurate email addresses for entrant, teacher, and parents.
  • For a live competition, all entrants must be fully vaccinated by the date of the competition. 
  • Application deadline is December 15, 2021, 5:00 p.m. EST. There will be no exceptions.


Entrant Eligibility

Youth Competition

  • Entrant must be a resident of North Carolina or South Carolina between the ages of 12 and 18, and have a private teacher/instructor.

Adult Adjudication

  • Entrant must be a resident of North Carolina or South Carolina and age 19 or older. The adult adjudication is not a competition, but an opportunity for serious amateur musicians who have an interest in baroque music to receive valuable feeedback from professional baroque musicians.


NOTE: Entry in multiple performance categories is allowed, but each entrant is allowed only one entry within a category.

Entrant Information

  • All application fees are nonrefundable.
  • Competition financial obligations, including travel and lodging, are the responsibility of the entrant.
  • Entrants may make applications for multiple instruments, but must submit a separate application and pay a seperate application fee for each instrument entered.


Youth Competition

  • Decisions of competition judges are final.
  • Audio or video recording and photography of the entrants, competitions, and winners concert(s) is strictly forbidden.
  • Bach Akademie Charlotte will select up to 10 finalists in each division to participate in the February 12, 2022 competition:
    • There are 6 divisions:
      High School Piano, High School Strings, High School Woodwinds/Brass,
      Middle School Piano, Middle School Strings, Middle School Woodwinds/Brass 
      All applicants wll be notified of their status no later than January 3, 2022.
      Competition finalists will be determined on the day of the competition after entrants perform. 
  • Facilities permitting, competition performances (including winner concerts) are open to the public. Competition rehearsals are closed to the public.
  • It is the responsibility of the entrant to be available for the published date of the competition.
  • The assigned rehearsal and performance times are final and cannot be changed.



  • Entrants must perform 2 pieces: one composed by Johann Sebastian Bach (Handel/Telemann/Vivaldi  for woodwinds), and one composed prior to 1800 by another composer.
  • Applicants must upload a video of one of the pieces to be considered for the competition. Entrants do not need to make a professional recording. An iPhone or other smartphone/tablet video is sufficient, but entrant must be seen performing in the video, and the audio must be clear.
  • Individual movements of suites, sonatas or other groupings that can be performed as musical units are permitted.
  • Cuts in solo parts are not permitted. Repeats are left to the discretion of entrant.
  • Cuts in the tutti (piano accompaniment) parts of movements are allowed and encouraged.
  • All repertoire must be performed with single instrument accompaniment, except for works written specifically for unaccompanied solo instrument.
  • Live accompaniments are preferred for video competitions; however, if entrants are unable to meet with accompanists due to state or local orders, prerecorded single-instrument accompaniments are acceptable (for video competition only). Works written using supplemental sounds (not accompaniments), including those either electronically or acoustically produced or pre-recorded, are not permitted.
  • No changes in repertoire are allowed following submission of the application.
  • Teachers should verify that all repertoire listings are correct before submission of the application.
  • Entrants and teachers should verify all repertoire listings after receiving the email confirmation following submission of the application.

Competition Music

  • Entrant will abide by all copyright laws and has permission to use all music given to judges and accompanists during the competitions. (While the music itself is in the public domain, commercially-published scores (Peters, Schirmer’s, Thompson, etc.) are protected by copyright laws.) A public domain score may be available at the International Music Score Library Project’s web site. Please be aware that the quality of these PDF scores varies widely.
  • All solo performance entrants must provide a single hard copy score (original preferred) of each work listed on the application for use by the judge(s). Legal photocopies are acceptable. Entrants requiring an accompanist must also provide an additional hard copy score.
  • Measures must be numbered at the beginning of each line.
  • Solo instrumentalists may submit either the solo part or the complete score.
  • Names on scores do not need to be covered.


Competition Procedure for All Categories

Performance procedures

  • Combined timing of both pieces should not exceed 12 minutes.
  • Programs may be over or under the performance time limit. Programs over the time limit may be cut at the judges' discretion. The entrant will not be penalized for exceeding the time limit.


  • Teachers may accompany any entrant.
  • Official accompanists are available at the competition for an additional fee of $50.
  • Official accompanist fees are nonrefundable.
  • Additional rehearsal time with an official accompanist may not be contracted.  

Adult Adjudication

  • The adult adjudication is an opportunity for amateur musicians to receive valuable feedback from professional musicians.
    It is not a competition. No prizes will be awarded, but each participant will receive two complimentary general admission tickets to a 2022 Bach Akademie Charlotte concert of their choosing.
  • Applicants are not required to submit a video. 
  • Space is limited to sixteen entrants.
  • Competition rules that are not explicitly for the Youth Competition also apply to the Adult Adjudication.

Competition Agreement

  • By submitting an application, the entrant and parent or guardian (if entrant is under the age of 18) acknowledge that they have read, understand and agree to the Carolina Bach Competition Rules & Guidelines stated on this page. Failure to abide by these rules and regulations will make the entrant ineligible to receive recognition or awards.
  • Entrants under age 18 must have parent/guardian permission to enter the Carolina Bach Competition.
  • The credit card holder has authorized use to complete the application.
  • All entry fees are nonrefundable.
  • Entrant will abide by all copyright laws and has permission to use all music given to judges and accompanists during the competitions.
  • Bach Akademie Charlotte is not responsible for problems with Internet service, emails, or phones.