The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Mar 15, 2013

Friends of the SPCO’s Youth Chamber music competition goes viral

Posted by Valerie Nahmad

By Kelly Belich, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra

The Friends of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra’s second annual Youth Chamber Music Competition, the final rounds of which will take place March 23-24, saw an interesting innovation this year.

For the first time, the competition’s first round was judged via YouTube videos submitted by talented young chamber music ensembles. Entries were received from experienced chamber music players, apprentice groups, and non-competing groups who simply wanted to submit their video for comments. This year’s applicants include string trios, string quartets, and a percussion group. Their videos can now be seen on the competition’s YouTube channel,

The statewide competition is open to pre-college instrumentalists who live in Minnesota or study or coach with someone in Minnesota. Selected groups will advance to the live semifinal round on Saturday, March 23 in Antonello Hall at the MacPhail Center for Music in Minneapolis.

The finals/winners recital will take place on Sunday, March 24 at 2 p.m. at the SPCO Center in Saint Paul. This event is free and open to the public, but reservations should be made by calling 651.291.1144 or by emailing

Also new to the competition this year are partnerships with MNSOTA - Minnesota String and Orchestra Teachers Association, and with MacPhail Center for Music.

More information is available on the competition’s website Last year’s winning group, Quartet Tzigane, performing in the Marzitelli Foyer at the Ordway before an SPCO concert.


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