The Seattle Young
Artists Music Festival Association is an all-volunteer, 501(c)(3)
non-profit arts organization dedicated to extending educational and performance
opportunities to young musicians.
The Seattle Young
Artists Music Festival Association was founded in 1970 with a
non-competitive philosophy focused on musicianship and the development of
performance artistry. The un-graded masterclass format uniquely
distinguishes the Seattle Festival from most others, and enables Festival
adjudicators to focus on teaching in an interactive learning environment for
Since its inception,
national adjudicators of outstanding quality have been a hallmark of the
SYAMFA Festival. Adjudicators come from such prestigious music institutions
as the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra of New York, The Juilliard school,
Oberlin Conservatory, Eastman, The Curtis Institute, The Cleveland
Institute, and many other renowned music programs. The result of these two
combined values is often substantial growth in the musicianship of the
participating young artists and a greater mastery of their chosen
In its youth, our
event was held in local area churches and other small venues but for
nearly two decades, the Festival has partnered with the University of
Washington School of Music where the annual event now occupies the entire
Music Building during the University's spring break.
Young Artists Music Festival was Founded by five Seattle area music
educators seeking to improve both the musicianship and artistry of young
local music students, as well as the level of instruction offered by
local music teachers. The Founders of the SYAMFA were:
How we are
Young Artists Music Festival Association is comprised of two separate
groups, the Board of Directors and the Music Advisory Panel. Both groups are
staffed entirely by volunteers.
The Board of
staffed by individuals from a broad range of backgrounds who share an
interest in music and a strong belief in the importance of the Festival as
an unparalleled performance and educational experience for aspiring young
musicians. The Board engages the adjudicators, manages their transportation
and accommodations, contracts with venues, designs, implements and maintains
the technology systems, registers and schedules participants, publishes the
printed materials, conducts fundraising efforts, and staffs the operations
during both the week long Festival and Concerto Winners Concert.
The Music Advisory
Panel members are all prominent local music educators. They have the critical task
of selecting Festival Adjudicators and provide expertise on issues
pertaining to the standards of music and the teachers' point of view. The
Panel reviews all entrance applications for compliance with the rules
governing repertoire and performance practice, grants acceptance to the
Festival, and staffs the Festival with class monitors.
Board of Directors, Music Advisory Panel, and Festival Operations Staff are
all volunteers. Only the Adjudicators providing instruction are compensated.
Those interested in supporting the Festival are urged to contact any member
of the Board. We are always
looking for volunteers and you needn't to be a musician to help. Interested? Please contact us.
Young Artists Music Festival Association is funded through a combination of
entry fees and donations. Our events could not take place without the
generous support of those who contribute each year. The SYAMFA is a
501(c)(3) Non-Profit Arts organization and donations are tax deductible. The
Festival Board, Music Advisory Panel, and Participants thank you for your
To make a contribution, click here: CONTRIBUTIONS