Stepping Stone 2010 / Rules

Historical Information

The information contained on this page is related to an older edition of the competition. It is made available for archival purposes only. For the most current information, please go to Stepping Stone 2020.

1. Registration

The Stepping Stone is open to:

  • Canadian citizens
  • Permanent residents (please send a copy of your permanent resident card)

Past First Prize winners may not re-enter the competition.

The Stepping Stone is open to violin, viola, cello, double bass, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, French horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, harp, harpsichord, piano, guitar, and voice.

The registration form is available online.

A candidate cannot register, within the same year, for both the Canadian Music Competition and the Stepping Stone. However, a candidate who is not selected for the Stepping Stone may participate in the Canadian Music Competition.

2. Age Limits

16 to 28 years old (except for voice: 31 years old) as of January 1st, 2010.

3. Deadline

The completed registration form must be submitted electronically by January 11, 2010. Applications sent after this date will not be accepted.

4. Registration fees

  • Pre-selection: $100
  • Registration: $150

The pre-selection and registration fees are payable in one instalment via Visa, Mastercard, cheque or money order. Cheques and money orders must be mailed, postmarked no later than January 11, 2010. Post-dated cheques are not accepted.

The registration fee of $150 will be refunded to candidates who are not selected for participation.

There will be an additional charge of $15 for NSF cheques.

5. Material to Submit

  • A high quality audio recording on CD or DVD including three works from different periods and styles (complete work or excerpt(s); maximum 45 minutes). The recording must be clearly identified with the name of the candidate and the works performed.
  • A biography, including educational background, performances, professional experience, awards, etc. (maximum 400 words).
  • One recent photograph.
  • If applicable, a copy of your permanent resident card.

All documents must be sent no later than January 11, 2010, by email or regular mail, postmarked January 11, 2010 (see contact page).

6. Repertoire Guidelines

  1. Works must be different in each round. Multi-movement works such as a concerto, sonata, suite, opera, etc., cannot be split over multiple rounds.
  2. A major work for solo instrument and orchestra can replace a concerto or a movement of a concerto.
  3. Works with orchestra accompaniment must be performed with piano or harpsichord accompaniment.
  4. Time Limits
    Candidates must respect the specified time limits. First round: 40 minutes; Semi-Final: 65 minutes; Final: no time limit. Performances will be interrupted if the time limit is exceeded.
  5. Repeats are permitted providing that the maximum time limit is respected.
  6. It is forbidden to make any cuts in the pieces or movements. However, candidates are allowed to make cuts in the tutti sections of concertos, but cadenzas are mandatory.
  7. Candidates must indicate the precise timing of all works on the registration form.
  8. Memorization
    Memorization of every pieces on the program is compulsory, except for sonatas with accompaniment, for which it is permitted to have the music.
  9. Candidates are allowed to change the performance order of the pieces at any time. On the day of the performance, candidates must present the scores in the performance order.
  10. All pieces and movements registered must be performed. No substitution is permitted.
  11. Candidates have until March 15, 2010 to submit any modification to their repertoire list. After this date, no changes will be allowed. A $30 fee applies. Any modification must be submitted using the Repertoire Changes form.

7. Competition Procedure

A pre-selection jury will choose a maximum of 50 candidates after conducting a blind audition of recordings. The candidates will be notified in early February. All jury decision will be final.

After the first elimination, a maximum of 16 candidates will be selected for the semi-final and a maximum of 6 candidates for the final.

Candidates who are not selected to proceed to the following round will receive their comment sheets and meet with the jury members immediately after the announcement of the results. The six finalists will receive their comments and meet the jury members at the award evening.

8. Punctuality

Candidates must be backstage fifteen minutes before their performance.

9. Copies of Scores

Candidates must provide five copies of each score and five copies of the program order for the jury prior to each round.

Originals and photocopies are allowed. Candidates must write down the following on all photocopies: “For the purpose of adjudication at the Stepping Stone competition only”.

10. Expenses

All lodging, travel expenses and accompanist’s fees are the candidate’s responsibility.

11. Cancellation

Candidates who wish to cancel must notify the National Office as soon as possible to facilitate the organization of the schedule.

12. Disqualification

Candidates not complying with these rules may be disqualified.

An incomplete or inaccurate registration form may result in disqualification.

Use of the audition hall and/or the piano without authorization is strictly forbidden. A schedule will be organized for each candidate before each round.

13. Other

Any situation not covered by these rules shall be referred to the Board of Directors, whose decision on such matters shall be final.