Competition rules

I. REGISTRATION AND PRESELECTION

a/ Age limit: to be eligible, organists must have been born no earlier than 1 January 1994.

b/ Registration by Internet: candidates must register between Thursday 1st of February and on Sunday 7th of April 2024 (midnight) at the Toulouse les Orgues website : www.toulouse-les-orgues.org/ – select “Competition”. Candidates are responsible for meeting the competition deadlines.
Details of the documents required for registration
To be valid, the registration file must include the following:

1 The completed registration form on the www.toulouse-les-orgues.org website

The candidate must complete the registration form online on the Toulouse les Orgues website, and also provide the various administrative documents listed below:

  • A copy of a currently valid ID document
  • A statement certifying that the recording is not a copy of another performance, and that the concert extracts have not been digitally altered in any way
  • A personal biography in English and/or French, no longer than 1000 characters including spaces
  • A photograph
  • A digital audio recording which shall be sent by WeTransfer link to the following address: concoursdarasse@toulouse-les-orgues.org

2 A concert programme

– Candidates will be required to propose a music programme for a 45-minute concert. Programmes of 40-50 minutes maximum will be accepted.
– They shall also indicate, from the following list, the organ chosen for the semi-finals and the final in Toulouse, in the event that they are shortlisted

  • “Baroque Organ” Category: the organs of the Musée des Augustins or the church of Saint-Pierre des Chartreux
  • “Symphonic Organ” Category: the organs of the Basilica of Saint-Sernin or the church of ND de la Dalbade
  • “XXth Century Organ” Category: the organs of the Cathedral of Saint-Étienne or of the Couvent des Dominicans
    The choice of works and composers is entirely free, irrespective of the musical style. The programme may include organ works, transcriptions or arrangements. Non-classical music and improvisations are accepted but must not exceed 15 minutes over the entire programme. Transcriptions will be accepted with no time limit.
    – The programme must not include the participation of other musicians.

 3 A digital audio recording concert

– Candidates shall record excerpts of their programme in a good-quality digital format (.mp3 or .wav). Recordings shall not be edited in any way.
– Recordings shall not exceed 20 minutes in length. Candidates are free to choose complete pieces or extracts of the works in the programme.
– Recordings shall be sent by WeTransfer link to the following address concoursdarasse@toulouse-les-orgues.org
– Candidates must state where the recordings were made, the date, and the general characteristics of the organ used for the recording (date of construction, factor, number of keyboards and stops).
Please note: as the recordings will be assessed anonymously, videos will not be accepted.

 4 Registration fees

The non-refundable €50 entry fee shall be paid by bank transfer to the following account by midnight on 7th of April 2024, on which date registration will be closed:

International Bank Account Number / IBAN FR76 1313 5000 8008 1018 4365 961
BIC: CEPAFRPP313

Candidates will receive an email confirming receipt of their completed file.
– Registration fees will not be refunded.

 

II. TEST PROCEDURES

a/ Shortlisting procedure

A jury consisting of three organists (Michel Bouvard, Cindy Castillo and Jan Willem Jansen) will examine the projects submitted and listen to the recordings sent, with entries being presented anonymously by the competition director, Yves Rechsteiner.
The jury will base its decision mainly on the musical quality of the performances. It may take into account the originality and quality of the proposed programme. In addition, candidates must be attentive to the quality of the sound recording, which can affect the jury’s appreciation.
The jury will choose a maximum of 12 candidates for the semi-finals. The selected candidates will be informed in early May 2024.

b/ Semi-Finals in Toulouse (Tuesday 1 and Wednesday 2 October)

– The test will be a public performance and will take place in the presence of the jury on the organ chosen by the candidate.
– The candidate may choose to perform a maximum of 30 minutes of works or excerpts of works freely selected from his or her programme. Candidates may choose to play some or all of the pieces presented in the pre-selection recordings a second time.
– Candidates must be present in Toulouse, for rehearsals and tests, from 30th September to 5th October 2024.
– Depending on the organs selected and the distribution of candidates, the competition organisers will draw up a schedule of rehearsals that will be sent to the candidates at the latest one week before the test. In the interest of the candidates, this schedule will be drawn up taking into account the complexity of the chosen works and the needs in terms of registration. Candidates may not dispute the schedule drawn up by the competition organisers.
– Registration assistants will be made available to candidates for rehearsals and tests.

As most organs are not equipped with combiners, candidates should be careful not to plan for too complex and numerous registrations, so as to avoid causing difficulties for the assistants during the tests.
The Jury will choose a maximum of six candidates for the final. The jury is under no obligation to select the same number of candidates in each category.

c/ Finals in Toulouse (Thursday 4th and Friday 5th of October)

Candidates will play their entire 45-minute programme in a public concert. Preparation for the tests will be under the same conditions as for the semi-final.
The final will produce three winners, one per category.

d/ Financial and travel assistance to candidates

– Financial assistance will be available for semi-finalists to cover their travel and accommodation costs, upon presentation of receipts, to a maximum of €300. A list of accommodation options as well as practical information to help contestants organise their stay will be available on the competition pages of the www.toulouse-les-orgues.org website, under “Competition”.
– Receipts: Not exceeding an overall total of €300 per contestant, economy-fare train or air tickets will be accepted and reimbursed, hotel bills in Toulouse (with breakfast).

 

III.THE PRIZES

– In each category, the Competition awards a single prize of €4000. The jury is obliged to award one prize per category.
– The winner of the « Baroque Organ » category becomes ECHO organist of the year 2024. As such, he or she will benefit from concerts in all ECHO partner cities, European Cites of Historical Organs.
– The audience attending all the finals of the « Symphonic Organ » Category will be able to vote for their favorite candidate. The candidate with the most votes will be invited to perform during the Festival international Toulouse les Orgues 2025.
– The audience attending all the finals of the « XXth Century Organ » Category will be able to vote for their favorite candidate. The candidate with the most votes will perform in a concert in Europe.

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