This contest is not being offered in 2024-25

but is expected to return in 2025-26.

The American Prize in

Arts Marketing


The American Prize in

Arts Education

The American Prize in Arts Marketing and in The American Prize in Arts Education recognize and reward the best marketing campaigns and best arts education activities by performing arts organizations in America, based on submitted applications from professional, school and community groups. In this division we are accepting performance activities made within the last five years and virtual (remote) performance activities made during COVID. There is also a separate competition specifically honoring remote performances. (See "Virtual Performances" in the "Competitions" menu.)

The American Prize is more than monetary. The Prize grew from the belief that a great deal of excellent music being made in this country goes unrecognized and unheralded, not only in our major cities, but all across the country...in schools and churches, in colleges and universities, and by community and professional musicians. Laureates of The American Prize at all levels of achievement derive local, regional and national recognition to help generate jobs, build audiences and sustain careers. Semi-finalists, finalists and winners are announced to national arts media and on our websites, where winners are profiled. Semi-finalists, finalists and winners earn the right to use The American Prize logo and official seal on printed programs and other documents, and on the web. Thousands of artists have derived benefit from their participation in the contests of The American Prize.

SEMI-FINALISTS: All semi-finalists receive official certificates.

FINALISTS and RUNNERS-UP: All finalists receive certificates and short comments about their audition. Runners-up receive certificates and written, unbiased evaluations from our distinguished national panel of judges. When winners are announced on The American Prize blog, RUNNERS-UP are also profiled on the blog with their photos, biographies and website links.

WINNERS: A single winner in each category and/or division is selected. Winners receive certificates, written evaluations, personalized press releases sent by us to local media and other contacts you provide as part of your application, and cash prizes up to $500, depending on the year, the category and the number of entrants.
Only with your explicit permission, excerpts of winning performances may be posted to The American Prize channel on .

The judges reserve the right to award citations and honorable mentions as warranted, and to combine categories when necessary. The decision of the judges is final.




This contest is not being offered in 2024-25, but is expected to return in 2025-26. Questions?

Email: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Arts Marketing and The American Prize in Arts Education recognize and rewards arts administrators in America who, in the opinion of the judges, have created the most effective marketing or eductional campaigns for their organizations during the past year in the United States. Applications are accepted from any performing arts organization that has created valuabe educational programs in the arts and/or markets its performances to the paying public, including orchestras, choruses, bands, theater, opera and dance companies. Multiple prizes may be awarded depending on the number and quality of entries. You may make separate application in as many categories as you are eligible, and may apply additionally for the organization or its arts leadership, as applicable, in the areas of Conducting, Stage Directing and/or Ensemble Performance. (See separate competition listings.)

The three broad categories for the awards in Marketing and Arts Education are:
    1. professional performing arts organization (all performers are paid)
    2. community performing arts organization (some performers may be paid/some may be students)

    3. educational institutions of all types

Both the marketing and education categories can be accessed from the same application form.

The competitions of The American Prize are open to all U.S. citizens, whether living in this country or abroad, and to others currently living, working and/or studying in the United States of America, its protectorates and territories. The American Prize does not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, gender, age, spiritual or personal belief, disability, sexual preference or gender identification. All application fees must be remitted in U.S. funds.


Every applicant must send certain required information by email.

Applicants can then complete their application either of two ways:


A. ONLINE ONLY: pay fees online, submit the downloaded application as a PDF or scan, along with the required emailed information (see application form), and include PDFs of marketing and/or educational materials, campaigns and/or philosophy and online links to any related materials. (Application forms for The American Prize can be filled out on computer, saved and emailed by using Adobe Reader 11. Download it free here.)

B. BY MAIL & EMAIL: mail the completed, downloaded application form, send hard copies of marketing and/or educationa lmaterials, campaigns and/or philosophy, send discs of any related broadcast materials to the office, and email the required information (see application form); paying fees online, or by check, money order or credit card.


    1. Download the application form for The American Prize in Arts Administration. Select the categories which best identifies the applicant.
    2. MAIL the completed application form by the deadline date or EMAIL it as a PDF or scan with your required email.

    3. If completing the application ONLINE, provide marketing and/or educational materials as PDFs or scans and include links to any broadcast materials with your required email (see application form.)
Be sure to identify any links by applicant and provide any passwords necessary, so judges can easily access your audition. Links must remain active until the end of the contest year. PLEASE NOTE: The responsibility for the viability of links rests with the contestant. Please double-check that they work correctly.

    4. If providing audition selections BY MAIL, include two collated hard copies of marketing and/or educational materials and two identical discs of any broadcast materials clearly idenitifed on both the recording itself and on the recording's cover or box. Be sure it lists applicant's name.
    5. Be sure to sign the form and pay the application fee. Pay ONLINE (click "FEES/GIFTS" in the menu bar, above), or use this link: "Pay competition fees", or send check, money order or credit card information by mail.
    6. Be sure to email the required information (see application form.)

The application fee is $75 per application. Pay ONLINE (click "FEES/GIFTS" in the menu bar, above) or use this iink: "Pay competition fees" pay by credit card, or make checks payable to HCMT/The American Prize (see application form.) Application fees are nonrefundable. No incomplete applications will be accepted. When paying online, BE SURE to identify the applicant with the payment.

The American Prize in Arts Marketing / The American Prize in Arts Education: Send as PDFs or scans, or as hard copies marketing and/or educational materials from your campaign or educational event, including, but not limited to, tear sheets, print ads, broadcast scripts, brochures, programs, media advertisements, links or print-outs of website or blog pages related to the activity, links or dvd recordings of any television, film, internet or radio spots from the campaign or educational activity. In the area of arts education, you may include links or discs of an actual performance, but they are not required. Please include any in-house materials created for staff or volunteers, as well as information concerning the campaign's or educational program's success. Campaigns or educational activities may focus on an entire season of performances or on a specific event. Materials may be submitted for any campaign or event that occurred during the five years encompassed in the seasons 2016-2016 through 2019-2020.

The winner(s) will not necessarily be those that were the most extensive or cost the most money. The judges seek evidence

of campaigns and educational activities that combined inspiration and creativity with demonstrable success, regardless of the budget available. We welcome statements from administrators that outline challenges the campaign or event sought to address, goals to be met, assessment procedures used, and analysis of success, as available. There are no other restrictions. No materials will be returned. Completed applications will be confirmed by email.


SEND required email to: theamericanprize@gmail.com

GENERAL TIMELINE for this competition:

In general, the competition process is completed over a number of months. Semi-finalists are announced in the fall and winter, finalists in the winter & spring, followed by winners—after which all certificates, evaluations and prizes are mailed. Specific dates for the announcement of each stage of the competition are posted in regular updates to the competition's blog and facebook pages. Find those links on the homepage of this website.

The American Prize competitions are administered by Hat City Music Theater, Inc. (HCMT), the 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization based in Danbury, CT.