PLEASE NOTE: Because of the uncertainty of our situation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are making plans for our competition, but will follow any health guidelines needed in October, including cancellation if necessary.
Now celebrating its ninth year of existence, the Young Artists Vocal Competition is sponsored by the Gulf Coast Messiah Chorus and is designed to encourage young singers of classical music through scholarships and the opportunity to perform solos as part of our chorus' virtual Christmas performance of Handel’s Messiah, thus helping to continue an outstanding choral tradition on the Mississippi Gulf Coast started 68 years ago by Dr. Glenn Draper. If you are a young singer, age 15 – 25 , we encourage you to participate in the competition.
The competition will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, October 24, 2020. The tentative location is First Presbyterian Church in Ocean Springs, MS. Our talented pianist, Mr. Guy Bowering, will accompany the contestants. Contestants will have the opportunity to vocalize and also rehearse on stage prior to the competition. There will be an audience in the auditorium during the competition.
Dr. Paul McGahie, director of the Gulf Coast Messiah Chorus, will preside over the judging, awarding of scholarships and selection of the soloists for the Christmas 2020 Messiah performances. Judges for the event will provide written critiques of each performance. Audience members can vote for their “favorite singer”.
In the past eight years, the YAVC participants have been awarded $29,650 in scholarships and “favorite singer” awards. The Bacot-McCarty Foundation and many individual donors, have contributed to the YAVC Scholarship Fund.
If you are a voice teacher, music director, or know of outstanding young singers, please encourage them to participate in the Young Artists Vocal Competition. If you are a school counselor or involved in college financial aid, we hope you will share information about this scholarship opportunity with talented vocalists who are interested in vocal scholarships.
The YAVC is open to young singers, ages 15 – 25, who live along the Mississippi Gulf Coast in one of the southern six counties. The participant can be a resident of the area, working in the area, a student in the area, or someone who grew up in the area but is in school elsewhere. Also, any young person who has sung with the Gulf Coast Messiah Chorus in the past is eligible to participate in the YAVC, regardless of residency.