The Competition








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Download the 2015 ApplicationGroups interested in participating in the 2015 competition should download the application.

Complete application packages (application form, checks and recordings, etc.) must be received no later than noon on Wednesday, February 11, 2015. Please note that the average age of the ensemble members must be under 28 as of April 28, 2015.

For questions and additional info, please email


The Competition began in 1947 as the Coleman Auditions for young, non-professional performers; today's competing ensembles have an average age of less than 28. From a modest beginning, the annual Coleman Chamber Ensemble Competition (renamed in 1982) has become a highly respected national and international event with competitors coming from the major music schools across the country.

Many Coleman Competition winners have gone on to become widely acclaimed artists. An abbreviated list of past winners includes Glenn Dicterow; Grant Gershon; Jeffrey Kahane; Anne-Marie McDermott; Paula Robison; Nathaniel Rosen; Morton Subotnick; the Ahn Trio; eighth blackbird; and the Cavani, Colorado, Pacifica, Tokyo, and Vega Quartets.

Held annually in late April, the Competition offers an opportunity for these musicians to perform before an outstanding panel of nationally chosen judges for three prizes totaling $15,500. Previous judges have included Jascha Heifetz; Natalie Limonick; Mehli Mehta; Gregor Piatigorsky; Artur Rubinstein; Eudice Shapiro; Arnold Steinhardt; Henri Temianka; the Beaux Arts Trio; and the Amadeus, Budapest, Opus One, and Smetana Quartets.