May 9th - 14th, 2021

Message from the President

Dear teachers, parents, students and friends of Musicfest Northwest:

As we enter the new 2021 festival season, the Board of Trustees sends their heartfelt hello’s and best wishes to all of you. We missed seeing you for the 2020 festival and hope that you are managing well in these difficult times that have affected us all.

As president of Musicfest Northwest, I wish to assure everyone that we are moving forward preparing for a robust 2021 festival season this coming May 2021. We don’t know what this coming spring will bring us but unless we are told otherwise, you can count on the Musicfest Festival taking place and that will include both the Young Artist and the Adjudicators Choice concerts.

We can assure you that Musicfest Northwest will take ALL PRECAUTIONS necessary as determined by the state and federal authorities along with common sense regarding cleanliness and sanitizing to make sure that all students, teachers, parents and guests of Musicfest Northwest are as safe and protected as much as possible. This will include, if required, restrictions on the number of people in a class room at any given time including playoffs etc. If we find that we are limited on the number of people allowed in the concert theater, we are looking into live streaming the concerts.

We understand the importance Musicfest Festival has for so many students, their parents and the music teachers. We have a long and honorable tradition of bringing together the most talented students and teachers in in the Pacific Northwest and other regions too. I and the Board of Trustees are committed to continuing this wonderful tradition. We will work tirelessly to make sure that this is the very best festival year for all of the hardworking and dedicated students, teachers, parents, guests and our esteemed visiting adjudicators.

We wish you all the very best fall and winter season and certainly look forward to seeing all of you this spring.

Warmest regards,

James Ennis
President, Board of Trustees
Musicfest Northwest

Rules & Regulations


1. Musicfest Northwest is open to everyone regardless of race, color, religion, sex or national origin.
2. Classes are open to any person whose principal means of livelihood is obtained from non-musical work, even though he or she accepts stipend or honorarium from time to time for musical services rendered.
3. Entrants may enter:
• Only one Young Artist Competition in the current festival
• Only four (4) classes in the entire festival (not including Sight Reading, Quick Study, Chamber Music and Ensembles)
4. An entrant may not enter the same class more than once in the same year.
5. In those sections that require more than one performer (duos, trios, etc.) a student may be a member of more than one group in the same class.
6. No one piece of music may be performed by the same person in two different classes.
7. Where indicated for a class, entries are limited to students of the specified age or school grade.
8. Young Artist winners are not eligible to compete as a Young Artist in the same division in any subsequent festival; however, winners may enter the same division Young Artist Section for adjudication only and will be adjudicated after the winner is chosen.
9. Except for Ballet Division, no recorded music will be allowed for accompaniment.
10. Entrants are responsible for hiring their own accompanists. Accompanists are not classified as entrants, except in Chamber Music where the piano will be an integral component rather than an accompanying participant so all members will be adjudicated accordingly.
11. No late entries will be accepted.
12. Musicfest Northwest has a No Refund Policy
Any exceptions must be addressed by sending a letter to the Board of Trustees including documentation from a doctor or other sources. Any approved refund will not include peripheral fees.
13. The decision of the Board of Trustees is final in all matters concerning the Festival.


1. Musicfest Northwest requires legally obtained music scores. It is the responsibility of teachers and students to be sure their music is in compliance with copyright laws. Musicfest does not hold responsibility for illegally obtained music. If you have questions about using scores downloaded from sources such as IMSLP, please refer to the ASCAP Licensing web page: A Legally Copied Music Verification Form needs to accompany each selection that has been copied and given to the adjudicator at the time of their audition. See form.
2. Entrants must report to their Check-in desk at the time specified in their schedule. For various reasons an entrant’s order of performance as assigned by the Chair might change without notice.
3. Entrants must give a copy of their music to the check-in Assistant when they report, opened at the proper page with measures numbered.
4. When called for adjudication, instrumental and voice entrants will take the stage and wait for the Adjudicator’s signal to begin performing.
5. Time limits are maximum; less time may be used but not more. If a selection exceeds time limit, the adjudicator may stop the performance.
6. In all adjudication rooms, cell phones and pagers must be in “silent” mode. Flash photography is not permitted. Video and Audio equipment, if discreetly used, may be acceptable subject to approval of the Adjudicator.
7. In Divisions and Classes where memorization is required, entrants choosing to use their music may be heard for adjudication only.
8. Students accompanied by their teachers are not eligible for monetary awards.
9. Grading:
• Superior 97 – 100
• Excellent 94 – 96
• Very Good 90 – 93
• Good 80 – 89
• Fair 75 – 79
10. Ballet and Voice Divisions use equivalent ratings but no numerical grades.
11. A Certificate of Merit is given to all entrants for a “Superior” performance.
12. Questions or protests regarding adjudication, grading or awards should not be discussed with the Adjudicator and must be made in writing to the Chairman of their Division.


1. To be eligible for an award in any class, the entrant must be adjudicated during that class. All Young Artist entrants must be adjudicated in all three classes (1A, 1B and 1C) at the time scheduled by the Division Chair. See Piano Division in Syllabus for Piano Adjudicators Choice Play-offs rules.
2. In order to be considered for an award involving public performance and/or monetary compensation, an entrant must be available for rehearsals and performances as scheduled. If the winner of the class cannot take advantage of an award, it may be offered to a qualified alternate, as determined by the adjudicator.
3. Entrants may receive only one monetary award given by Musicfest Northwest in the same year; however entrants may accept monetary awards offered by private donors.
4. An entrant may perform in only one Festival concert in the same year. This rule does not pertain to radio performances.
5. The Adjudicator is the sole judge, and that decision is final, provided it falls within the Festival’s grading system. If, in the opinion of the Adjudicator, no entrant in an award class meets the standard of performance, the award shall not be given.
6. In all Award Classes:
• One Gold Medal may be given with a grade of 97 or above (Superior)
• A Silver Medal may be given with a grade of 94 or above (Excellent)
• In Classes where a Cash Award is given, TIES ARE NOT ALLOWED
• Any first place performance receiving a grade of 94-96 (Excellent) can only receive a Silver Medal and is not eligible for any Cash Award or evening performance.


• There are no additional fees for students participating in these classes.
• The Gold Medal winner with the highest score in EACH group will be chosen to perform at the Adjudicators Choice playoffs.
• The winner of EACH group will receive $250.00, furnished by Steinway Piano Gallery of Spokane and MUST be available to perform at the Adjudicators Choice playoff on Thursday Afternoon of Festival Week and at the Festival Highlights Concert on Friday Evening.
• The Adjudicators may select:
o One person from classes marked (I)
o One person from classes marked (II)
o One person from classes marked (III)
o One person from classes marked (IV)
Adjudicator’s Choice playoffs I, II, III & IV will be held Thursday, May 13th, 2021

Important News!

Registration for Musicfest Northwest 2021 HAS BEEN SUSPENDED! New Masterclass Series Announced.

Masterclass Series 2021


Masterclass Series May 10-14, 2021 – Please see schedules for more information

Location Information

All master classes will be held at the Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox except the piano division which will be held at Steinway of Spokane in the Recital Room.


As we celebrate our 75th Diamond Anniversary in 2021 we are aiming to make it the best festival yet! We are always in need of sponsors, donors and volunteers. If you have any skills or ideas you would like to present to us please feel free to get in touch!

In the meantime, your donation to the Festival helps immensely in keeping future editions of this wonderful even alive and because as a non-profit organization, we rely on the generous support of our members.

Please send checks/cash to our Festival Office.

To Donate Online


Musicfest Northwest
1305 N Napa
Spokane, WA 99202
Tel: +1 509-327-3455

Community Partners

Steinway Piano Gallery of Spokane Logo
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Spokane Public Radio Logo


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Virtuoso Level
Holloway Family Trust
Virtuoso Level
Steinway Piano Gallery of Spokane Logo
Hank & Kay Benson - Ballet Division
Recital Level
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Recital Level

Mike & Barb Canton - Reed Division

Crescendo Level

Please see News for more information on COVID-19 and how we are dealing with this year's Festival.