Competition procedure

The singing contest, "Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg", is aimed at singers, who already have professional experience, or are enrolled at a music conservatory.

Young singers of any nationality, who will be between 18 and 33 (women) and 35 (men) on the first day of the competition, can take part in the singing competition "Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg." When applicants are applying with highly dramatic characters for the prize in the German category, the age limit is raised to 43 (women) and 45 (men.) When choosing six arias, candidates, who due to age limit can apply from the outset only for participation in the German theme, must select four from the German theme, one by Mozart and one from the general theme.

The competition is divided into two categories: Overall and German. Candidates must announce their area of focus. The competition jury will make a decision about which category of the contestant's performances they will reward.

The competition canon covers the total selection of arias for Overall and German categories.

The contestants choose a total of six arias from the competition canon, at least one of which must be by W. A. Mozart.

The organising committee has the right to reject contestants or the combination of their chosen arias.

After the receipt of applications (by 15th February 2016 at the latest), the jury will invite the contestants to one of the international pre-selection locations.

International Pre-Selections

International pre-selections for the singing competition "Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg" 2016 will take place in selected locations in North and South America, Asia and Europe between February and April 2016. Local jury members, alongside one or two representatives from the competition jury, will decide upon the contestants that will be invited to the competition in Nuremberg.

For the international pre-selections (this also includes Hamburg and Nuremberg), the singer must prepare three arias from the six arias announced. Two of the three arias must from the area of expertise specified, the third aria must be by Mozart. For the preselection process, the singer may choose the first aria to be presented her/himself. The jury may require a second aria when needed.

Stockholm (3rd February 2016)

Paris (1st and 2nd March 2016)

Moscow (9th and 10th March 2016)

Shenzhen (16th March 2016)

Hamburg (29th and 30th March 2016)

São Paulo (4th and 5th April 2016)

Toronto (7th and 8th April 2016

Nuremberg (9th and 10th May 2016)
(Dates are subject to changes.)

The competition in Nuremberg

Participation in the preliminary rounds in Nuremberg for the singing contest "die Meistersinger von Nürnberg" is only open to Contestants who have already qualified after participation in the international pre-selections.


  1. The three rounds of the singing contest in Nuremberg will take place from 23rd to 27th July 2016.
  2. A permanent reception service will be available on Friday, 22nd July and Saturday, 23rd July for contestant registration, contest song selection and score inspections.
  3. All information about the location and times of the reception service will be given to the approved contestants (for those participating in the contest) by 20th July 2016 at the latest.
  4. All approved contestants must take part in the call and the draw (in alphabetical order, choice of any starting letter) on 23rd July 2016 at around 10:00am.

Inspecting the piano scores

Contestants must also look after the piano scores for their arias.
In order to make it possible for the pianists to accompany the contestant efficiently, the organising committee inspects the legibility of the piano scores at registration.
If a presented piano score is judged to be illegible, the contestant's aria can be declared to be invalid.

Preliminary Rounds

During the Nuremberg preliminary rounds, contestants for the semi-final will be chosen. The contestant chooses two pieces from their suggested programme. Firstly, only one piece of their choice will be performed; the second piece will only be sung if it requested by the jury.

For the preliminary rounds in Nuremberg, the singer must prepare all six arias. The singer may choose the first aria to be presented in the preliminary round her/himself. The jury may require a second aria when needed. The same rule applies for the semifinals.

First and second prize-winners from international singing competitions, which belong to the FMCIM [Fédération Mondiale of the Concours Internationaux de Musique], can bypass the preliminary Nuremberg round (and also the international pre-selections in the spring) upon request. Copies of the prizes or official certificates, which have been received in the past three years, must be attached to the application documents.


All contestants, who successfully complete the Nuremberg preliminary rounds, as well as those who are exempt from the initial selection, take part in the semi-finals. The singer may choose the first aria to be presented in the preliminary round her/himself. The jury may require a second aria when needed. The semi-final is open to the public and takes place with piano accompaniment.


All contestants that successfully complete the semi-final take part in the final. For the final, the jury chooses one or two pieces from the singer's suggested programme. The jury has the opportunity to make a selection from their initial choices or from their semi-final pieces. The final is open to the public, and is accompanied by the Nuremberg Philharmonic Orchestra.

The contestants' scheduled rehearsals with the orchestra are obligatory.
Orchestral scores will be supplied by the organising committee. The announcement of the results of the final and the prize-giving will takeplace immediately after the final. Contestants, who compete in the final but do not win a prize, receive a finalist's diploma.

Open-Air Prize-Winners Concert at the Hauptmarkt

The prize-winners are obligated to take part in the prize-winners concert on 28th July 2016, as well as in the corresponding rehearsals at the Hauptmarkt.
The jury will gladly arrange the programme in consultation with the prize-winners.


Overall Category:
1st Prize: 10,000 EUR Stadt Nürnberg
2nd Prize: 6,000 EUR GfK (consumer research association)
3rd Prize: 4,000 EUR Private Sponsor

German Category:
1st Prize: 10,000 EUR Gerhard and Caroline Wöhrl
2nd Prize: 6,000 EUR Marcel and Marco Megerle
3rd Prize: 4,000 EUR KPMG Bayerische Treuhandgesellschaft

Sponsored Prize Freunde der Staatsoper Nürnberg e.V
Audience Prize
Richard-Wagner-Verbands Nürnberg Prize

Application Process

Contestants can apply from 15th October up until 15th February 2016 using the application form on the "Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg".

Important: Applications that arrive after 15th January 2016 cannot be considered.

The organising committee will inform the contestants whether they will participate in the international pre-selections by 15th February 2016 at the latest.

Accommodation in Nuremberg

The contestants can find out tourist information and accommodation information here:

A block of rooms is reserved for contestants in the Motel One Nürnberg-Plärrer:

Motel One Nürnberg-Plärrer
Steinbühler Str. 13
90443 Nürnberg

(Reasonably-priced flights can be booked via Lufthansa.)

Competition Conditions