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Overture Awards

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Welcome to the Overture Awards

To begin the application process and view discipline criteria, locate the "Start an Application" drop down on the left hand side of the screen.

The Overture Awards is a program that recognizes, encourages and rewards excellence in the arts among Greater Cincinnati students in grades 9-12. Its mission is to encourage arts education as an integral part of a student’s academic experience and to create an environment that encourages training in, and appreciation of, the arts. The Overture Awards Competition is the area’s largest solo arts competition and offers awards in six artistic disciplines: creative writing, dance, instrumental music, theatre, visual art, and vocal music.

Deadline to fully complete and submit an application is December 14, 2021 at 11:59pm.

Prior to filling out an application, please click here to ensure you are eligible. 

Applications for the Overture Awards may be filled out and submitted by a school coordinator/teacher or by a student. The student and coordinator/teacher should decide which of the following application methods will be used:

  1. A student may fill out and submit their application. (Students will need the nomination code given by their coordinator in order to complete their application.)
  2. School Coordinators/Teachers may fill out and submit an application on behalf of a student.
  3. School Coordinators/Teachers may start an application for students. The School Coordinator/Teacher can give access to the application to the student and both may fill out the application and submit it. (Students will receive a verification email sent to the email address the School Coordinators/Teachers inputs.)

New Overture Awards Coordinators can sign up here.  A teacher, counselor, administrator, or private studio teacher can serve as a coordinator.

Applicants must be in grades 9-12 who study in the Greater Cincinnati Region.
*Find below all qualifying counties.

Application Fee is $20 and must be paid in order to submit application.

Notes on completing the application:

  • Applicants can enter in only one of the following disciplines: Creative Writing, Dance, Instrumental Music, Theater, Visual Art, or Vocal Music
  • Discipline Program Groups:
    • Creative Writing
    • Dance
    • Instrumental Music: Select program for specific application.
      • Brass/Woodwind/Percussion
      • Piano
      • String
    • Theater: Select program for specific application.
      • Apply for “Theater” if you are performing 2 monologues.
      • Apply for “Musical Theater” if you are performing 1 monologue and 1 song.
    • Visual Art
    • Vocal Music: Enter this discipline if you plan to sing two songs

By completing the application, students agree to be available for the competition dates (see website for schedule). If you are not available on the competition dates, you are not eligible to compete.

Email is the primary means of communication for the Overture Awards. Please be sure the email information is correct and current.

YoungArts Finalists

The Overture Awards and YoungArts have an agreement where Overture Awards finalists automatically advance in YoungArts. The Overture Awards has extended that agreement to eligible Overture Awards competitors who advance to the finals in YoungArts. Since the YoungArts Finals conflicts with the Overture Awards Regional Competition, Overture Awards competitors who advance to YoungArts Finals will automatically advance to the Overture Awards Semi-Finals competition. Competitors must meet all other requirements including completing an application, and must notify the Overture Awards about advancing to YoungArts Finals.

*The following counties constitute the “Greater Cincinnati” area:
State of Ohio
Adams, Brown, Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton, Highland, Warren
State of Kentucky
Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Pendleton
State of Indiana
Dearborn, Franklin, Ohio, Ripley, Switzerland

Students notified if moving to Semi-Finals: January 21, 2022

Students notified if moving to Finals: February 24, 2022

Overture Awards Finals: March 12, 2022

Questions? Contact espooner@cincinnatiarts.org or 513-977-4116.

For technical questions, please visit the Acceptd Help Desk.