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Contest for Young Musicians Carries Large Cash Prizes

Hey, absurdly talented 17- or 18-year-old jazz musicians! Want to make some cold, cold cash? Sure you do. So read on.

You may be undecided as to whether to apply for the National Foundation for the Advancement in the Arts annual Arts Recognition and Talent Search (ARTS) program. Sure, those who earn the all-expenses-paid trip to Miami for the weeklong program will enjoy master classes, workshops, performances, and the society of other people much more talented at a young age than most of us will ever be. But maybe you’re tired of filling out applications.

In that case, you should know that the NFAA has teamed with Music for Youth to provide three $25,000 cash awards to the top three musicians who participate in ARTS Week. That’s not a scholarship, folks, that’s a cash award. Think of it as their way of making sure that you get a little leg up on your less-talented competition. The award will be given to musicians with “superior ARTS Week audition materials, extraordinary ARTS Week performances, [and] recommendations by ARTS Week panelists.”

For more information on ARTS Week and the NFAA/MFY awards, visit The applications for ARTS will be available in March 2002 at, but $25,000 is worth getting started early.