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Youth Concerto Competition



The Concerto Competition takes place in alternate years and will next take place during the 2024-25 season.

The CCO Concerto Competition is underwritten by:

The CCO’s Lee Strebel Memorial Youth Concerto Competition provides young area musicians the chance to compete, at the highest level, for performance opportunities and an honorarium to assist with their musical studies.  The competition takes place every two years with a rotating panel of judges.  In addition to competing for a chance to perform with the orchestra, students that compete are eligible for youth performance initiatives and masterclasses,
and will receive valuable comments from the audition panel.



Students who have not yet graduated from high school may participate in one of two age divisions:

Junior: Not older than 14 on the competition date, or attending Middle School
Senior: Not older than 18 on the competition date, or attending High School.

We invite applicants on piano, strings (violin, viola, cello, double bass, and guitar), woodwinds and brass (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, trumpet, horn, trombone, and tuba), timpani, percussion, harp, and voice.

Entrants must choose pieces that were original written for their instrument.

Applications are not currently being accepted.  New Applications and Updated Guidelines will be posted in the months prior to the 2024-25 competition. Here are the materials for the most recent competition:

CCO Youth Concerto Competition 2022 Guidelines
CCO Youth Concerto Competition 2022 Application


Please direct any questions to:

Click here or a profile on the most recent Concerto Competition winners (2022).


Origin of the Lee Strebel Memorial Youth Concerto Competition 

The Strebel Fund for Community Enrichment was created in the memory and spirit of Lee Strebel, and his love of the performing arts. To carry on his artistic vision and legacy, this fund supports talented high school students, individually or through organizations, who desire to develop to their full potential through continued studies, with special emphasis in the performing arts. Additionally, this fund supports various organizations, including arts education in the Ithaca City School District, local thespian events, and other related community programs.  Lee lived his life fully, intensely and passionately. He aspired to be a stand-up comic and enjoyed his art by making people laugh. Lee loved classic rock and roll and Broadway show tunes, particularly the Phantom of the Opera, which he introduced to many friends and family.

As part of a continued dedication to Lee’s love of the performing arts, various grants, awards, and programs will be supported and made possible through The Strebel Fund for Community Enrichment.  A portion of The Strebel Planning Group's revenue is bestowed to this fund annually.

The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is honored to carry out this very special legacy.



2022-23 SEASON

  • Senior Division:Catalina Wooldridge, Cello (Pultneyville, NY), student of Rosemary Elliott

  • Senior Division Runner Up: Paul Di Folco, Piano (Fayetteville, NY), student of Russell Posegate

  • Senior Division Honorable Mention:  Riley Hubisz, Flute (Ithaca, NY), student of Elizabeth Shuhan

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention:  Joni Woods, Cello (Ithaca, NY), student of Zachary Sweet

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention:  Cynthia Zhang, Flute (Ithaca, NY), student of Elizabeth Shuhan

2020-21 SEASON

  • Senior Division Co-Winner: Joshua Jang, cello (Vestal, NY), student of Zachary Sweet

  • Senior Division Co-Winner: Daniel Zawel, trombone (Ithaca, NY), student of Ryan Zawel

  • Senior Division Honorable Mention: Wendy Allen, violin (Ithaca, NY), student of Madeline Schatz-Harris

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention: Joni Woods, cello (Ithaca, NY), student of Zachary Sweet

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention: Ethan Lin, cello (Ithaca, NY), student of Elizabeth Simkin


2018-19 SEASON

  • Junior Division: Crosby Woods, violin (Ithaca, NY), student of Kirsten Marshall

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention: Amy Feng, piano (Pittsford, NY), student of Elier Suárez

  • Senior Division: Sophia Werner, violin (Apalachin, NY), student of Linda Case


  • Junior Division: Daniel Wang, viola (South Windsor, CT), student of Melinda Daetsch

  • Senior Division: Gioia Gedicks, violin (West Hartford, CT), student of Teri Einfeldt

  • Junior Division Honorable Mention:  Prairwaa Madden, violin (Glastonbury, CT), student of Elizabeth Fay



  • Junior Division: Raymond Feng, piano (Pittsford, NY), student of Elier Suárez

  • Junior Division: Sophia Werner, violin (Apalachin, NY), student of Linda Case

  • Junior Division: Benjamin Doane, cello (Rochester, NY), student of Steven Doane and Rosemary Elliott

  • Senior Division: Honorable Mention: Miranda Werner, violin (Apalachin, NY), student of Linda Case


  • Senior Division: Helen Wong, violin

  • Junior Division:  Finian Burns, violin

  • Honorable Mention:  Miranda Werner, violin


  • Senior Division:  no winner designated this year

  • Honorable Mention, Senior Division: Lizhou Sha, violin

  • Junior Division:  Sofia Tong, violin


  • Co-winner, Senior Division: Samuel Shuhan, bass

  • Co-winner, Senior Division: Marza Wilks, cello

  • Honorable Mention, Senior Division:  Louisa Womach, bass

  • Honorable Mention, Junior Division:  Helen Wong, violin


  • First Place, Senior Division: Emerson Millar, violin

  • Second Place, Senior Division: Peter Stammer, trumpet

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