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Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Pianist Competition Announced

Advanced female pianists are invited to apply for the annual Mary Lou Williams (pictured) Women in Jazz Pianist Competition, hosted by Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center, with a prize of performing in next year’s annual Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival.

Entries must be postmarked by Dec. 30 and materials must include at $25 entry fee, three copies of a CD or cassette tape, a completed application form, a resume of CV and a photo. The audio recording must demonstrate the applicant’s knowledge of jazz and ability to play it by choosing three songs: one solo selection, one trio and an unrestricted final selection. The total time must not exceed 20 minutes, and original pieces are acceptable.

Five finalists will be chosen from the “blind” portion of the competition. The finalists will be invited to compete in the final round at the Kennedy Center during the 11th Annual Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival from May 11-13. The Kennedy Center will make and fund arrangements, and finalists will participate in festival activities and participate in the final round on May 12. The winner will be announced that evening.

The full list of rules and guidelines and an application form are available online at

Originally Published