The WMSO’s competition for young musicians takes place in October each year and attracts players of exceptional musical ability up to the age of 19. The Competition is open to young players of piano, string, woodwind and brass instruments who are resident or studying in the UK or in one of the twin towns of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.

Previous WMSO competition winners have subsequently been successful in nationally and internationally renowned competitions such as the BBC Young Musician of the Year, and many now have prestigious musical careers. You can see the progress of our former winners here.

The winner of the 2024 competition will receive a cash prize of £1,000 and a trophy. They will also have the opportunity to perform a concerto with the Windsor & Maidenhead Symphony Orchestra during the following season. The player placed second in the competition will receive a cash prize of £250.

Applications must be submitted by 31 May 2024. There is a non-refundable entry fee of £50. Players need to send in a completed application form, a link to a video of up to 10 minutes of their playing with live piano accompaniment (other than for pianists) and a summary of their musical background. Applicants will receive written comments on their performance.

For 2024, the Competition Final will take place on Sunday 13 October at St Piran’s Centre, Maidenhead. On the basis of the videos submitted, eight finalists will be selected to perform an extract from a concerto in the Competition Final with piano accompaniment before a panel of adjudicators led by Tasmin Little CBE, head of adjudicators. The Competition Final is open to the public who are welcome to come and enjoy the performances of the young musicians and hear the adjudicators’ comments and decisions.

The Orchestra is most grateful to our sponsors: Bishop Instruments & Bows for providing the prizes and marketing, and Handel Pianos Ltd for sponsoring and providing a grand piano for use in the Final.

Full details and an application form can be downloaded here.

Any queries can be sent to the Competition organiser through our Contact Form - please chose the category Young Musician Concerto Competition.

You can read about our 2023 competition here.