Conductor Directing

Kenneth Freed, Music Director

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Young Artist Competition


Kevin Kanne

Kevin Kanne was a beloved member of the Mankato Symphony Orchestra for 40 years who passed away suddenly on December 12th, 2010. Kevin strongly believed in providing opportunities for young people and the importance of music in everyone's life. The competition is open to all orchestral instruments, including piano and voice.

Prizes will be awarded and a Grand Prize winner will be selected to perform in a chamber music concert with an MSO chamber ensemble, which the MSO will advertise through local media sources and their newsletter.


Register by November 5th, 2016

Competition is November 19th, 2016

Download the 2016 Application Form

To register online: complete the form and email it to Pay the $25 registration fee with credit card or PayPal below.

Name of Contestant


"With these concerts we remember our friend and colleague Kevin Kanne. He served on the boards of the Cannon Valley Regional Orchestra, Faribault's Paradise Arts Center and Northfield's Vintage Band Festival. An ardent supporter of all musical genres, his contributions touched countless musicians and listeners in venues large and small throughout southern Minnesota. Over the last 40 years you may have met him as a percussionist with the Mankato Symphony, a euphonium player with the Bandshell Brass, a drummer with a host of jazz, rock or country bands, or in the pit for a theatre production. Whether in concert hall or small town bar Kevin's musicianship, integrity, and sense of humor endeared him to everyone he worked with. Those of us who knew him are richer from his friendship. His legacy will be the camaraderie and love of music that he inspired in us all."

-John Mundy-


Contest Information

Contest is open to all orchestral instruments, piano, and voice.

Contestants will compete in one of four divisions:

College Division – Undergraduate students

Senior Division – Grades 9-12

Junior Division – Grades 5-8

Open Division – K-Grade 12

Eligibility: College and K-12 students who study with a member of the MSO or reside or play in an orchestra in one of the following counties: Sibley, Nicollet, LeSueur, Brown, Watonwan, Blue Earth, Waseca, Martin, Faribault, Rice

Audition Requirements-College, Senior, and Junior Divisions: Contestants will audition with the piece they would expect to perform at an MSO chamber concert. The piece must be less than 10 minutes long and for accompanied solo instrument. If the piece contains a cadenza, the cadenza must be performed. Contestants must provide their own accompanist for the audition. Contestants must provide one copy of the music for the judges – photocopies are not acceptable. 

Audition Requirements-Open Division: This division is for less experienced players; there will be no ranking. Each participant will receive comments from an adjudicator and a certificate of participation. The piece must be less than 5 minutes long. Contestants must provide their own accompanist for the audition, if needed.

Prizes: Prizes will be awarded in the College, Senior, and Intermediate Divisions. In addition, the Grand Prize Winner will get to perform at an MSO chamber music concert, Spring 2017. The Grand Prize winner from last year’s competition will not be eligible for this year’s Grand Prize.

Entries must be postmarked by November 5. Send entries to:

The Mankato Symphony Orchestra

Kevin Kanne Memorial Youth Competition

P.O. Box 645

Mankato, MN 56002

Applications must include a $25 application fee, which is non-refundable. If you have questions, need more information, or if financial concerns make the application fee a problem, please contact Charlie Leftridge at 507-625-5880 or