Metelka Competition - Mezinárodní houslařská soutěž  

INTERNATIONAL VIOLIN MAKING COMPETITION
PRAGUE, 3.–7. June 2025

COMPETITION RULES

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Organizer: Venceslav Metelka Society, Hořejší 108, 25226 Kosoř, Česká republika
Venue: Czech Museum of Music, Karmelitská 2, 118 00 Praha 1, Czech Republic
Registration and submission of instruments: 3.6.2025 15:00 – 21:00
Date of the Competition: 4.-7.6.2025

1.

The Competition will run in the personal presence of the competitors and is composed of:

  • submission of a complete new instrument - violin (model Antonio Stradivari)
  • a competition in workmanship - i.e. carving of a scroll under competition conditions.

The personal presence of all competitors is obligatory.

2.

The Competition is open to all active violin-makers and apprentices, irrespective of nationality, sex and age. The applications for participation must be sent no later than April 15, 2025. Entries can be submitted only in electronic form – see link Application. The Application Form must be properly completed and by submitting the Form the participant agrees to abide by the regulations of the Competition.

The competitor is obliged to pay the participation fee 2500 Kč to the account of the organizer held at UniCredit Bank, Jungmannova 31, 110 00 Praha 1, Czech Republic, account number IBAN: CZ83 0800 0000 0021 8081 1319, or €100 to the account IBAN: CZ58 2700 0000 0013 2753 5028, BIC/SWIFT: GIBACZPX. Name of account: Společnost Věnceslava Metelky z.s.. The application form is valid only after receipt of the payment.

The number of participants is limited to 40, i.e. first 40 applicants. Conclusive is the date when the participation fee was credited to the organizer's bank account.

3.

A competitor may only submit 1 (one) violin. The instrument must have been constructed in 2023 or later. Because the Competition is not anonymous, each competing instrument must bear its author's label inside.

4.

An instrument will not be accepted if it:

  • has been awarded a prize in other national or international competitions
  • shows imitation of antique specimens (artificial ageing)
  • shows features of machinery processing
  • shows extravagant decorations, colours or wood which depart from the tradition

The competitors are not limited in the choice of the strings.

5.

At the registration (3.6.2025), each competitor will hand over the competing instrument to the organizers between 3pm and 9pm, along with his/her contact details. The instrument will be marked with a number that will help easier orientation during the Competition.

The instrument will be given back to the participant on Sunday June 8, 2025 9.00-12.00. If necessary and by prior arrangment, after the price giving ceremony on Saturday, June 7, 2025.

6.

The organizer will not insure the instruments nor take responsibility for any damage caused during the Competition. Any maintenance of the instruments will be provided by the competitors themselves. We strongly recommend that the competitors bring a spare set of strings.

7.

The professional jury will consist of at least three members, world-renowned experts. The Organizer will announce the names of the jury members no later than April 15, 2025 on the Competition's website.

Furthermore, this Competition is unique because also all the participants will judge!

Evaluated will be the artistry and workmanship of the instruments, their tonal quality and the artistry and workmanship of the competitive scrolls. Every participant and judge will have a scoring protocol for writing down the points. The awarded points will be entered into the scoring system and will be announced upon each round. Even points awarded by individual jury members and participants will be annouced. The transparency guarantees fair judging.

The details of judging will be explained before each round of the Competition.

8.

The judging will proceed as follows:

All participants together with the professional jury will judge the artistry and workmanship of all instruments and all competitive scrolls. Competitors will not evaluate their own works.

The points of the scrolls will be added to the points of the relevant instruments. The results will arise from points given at 50% by the participants and at 50% by the professional jury.

From these results only the best 20 instruments will qualify to the tonal tests. The other instruments will not be played.

9.

The tonal test will be held in a concert hall, where on stage will be played the qualified instruments one by one. On each instrument the same player will play the same music piece of a duration of about 1 minute, and as much as possible the same way. The tonal test will proceed in 2 rounds: first solo and next with piano.

This part of the Competition is anonymous. Instruments will be played behind a curtain and marked only with numbers, in order not to be recognised. After the 1st round (solo) the numbers of the instruments will be changed in order to change their sequence.

Before each 5 instruments a so-called reference instrument will be played to help calibrate the listeners' hearing.

The competitors together with the jury will judge the instruments. The results will arise from a sum of the points given by the competitors and the jury. Here a point of a juror has the same value as that of a competitor.

10.

The competition in scroll carving (model A. Stradivari) is obligatory for all competitors. It is not a competition in speed but in quality. Each competitor will bring his own tools and wood (maple) which may be pre-sawed up to scroll lines and must have a hollowed pegbox and drawn model lines (see picture). The semi-manufactured head may be prepared with any tools incl. rasp and file, however at the competition itself only knives, chisels and a saw may be used. Files, sandpaper and scrapers are excluded. Each competitor will be provided with a table, chair and table lamp. It is everyone's own decision which method he/she will apply and how he/she will hold the wood. We recommend bringing clamps. Optical and measuring tools are also allowed, as are images or plaster casts. Each scroll will be stamped by the organizers before the beginning of the Competition.

We encourage the professional jury members to participate too at the scroll carving contest, however out of the competition!

11.

At the Competition instruments will be assesed on:

artistic impression, style and mastery model max. 40 points
purity of design, technical quality of the work, adjustment max. 40 points
quality of the ground and varnish max. 40 points
total max. 120 points

the sound quality when playing solo - power max. 20 points
- colour/timbre max. 20 points
- balance max. 20 points

the sound quality at chamber music - projection over piano max. 20 points
- articulation max. 20 points
- playability, judged by player max. 20 points
total max. 120 points

At the Competition scrolls will be assesed on:

artistic impression, style and mastery model max. 30 points
purity of design, technical quality of the work, choice of material max. 30 points
total max. 60 points

To facilitate the process of judging, a competitor/juror will always give points in range 1-20 only. The relevant value of the points will be achieved through a coefficient in the judging system.

12.

The final results will arise from the sum of points given by the competitors and jury during the Competition. For interest and comparison also results of points given by the participants only and by the jury only will be published, just as other interesting outputs as deviation off the average, spread of given points etc..

The results of the Competition will be announced on June 7, 2025 at the gala prize giving. The winning scroll with the author's name will remain in the collection of the organizers; the winner will be reimbursed with high quality wood for a new scroll. The winning instrument remains the property of the competitor.

13.

Competition Awards:

  • 1st Place: Kč 30.000
  • 2nd Place: Kč 20.000
  • 3rd Place: Kč 10.000
  • The Jaromír Joo Award for the Best Scroll: Kč 20.000
  • Gold medal for the best work
  • Gold medal for the best tone
  • Special award of the jury
  • Award for the best technical merit
  • Award for the best artistic impression
  • Award for the best varnish
  • Award for the best Czech participant
  • Audience award
  • Other prizes

The Gold medal for the best work will be awarded for the highest number of points for the artistry and workmanship of the instrument alone, i.e. for the sum of points given for the technical quality, artistic impression and varnish.

The Gold medal for the best tone will be awarded for an instrument with the highest sum of points from both rounds of the tonal test.

The Special award of the jury will be awarded according to consideration of the professional jury.

The Award for the best technical merit will be awarded for the highest sum of points for the purity of design and technical quality for both the instrument and scroll.

The Award for the best artistic impression will be awarded for the highest sum of points for the artistic impression of both the instrument and scroll.

The Award for the best varnish will be awarded for the highes number of points given for the quality of the ground and varnish.

The Audience award will be awarded for the highest number of votes given by the visitors of the Competition.

14.

The Competition regulations are published in Czech and in English. In case of any controversial interpretation only the Czech text is valid.

15.

The organizer reserves the right to make any changes in the Competition regulations, no later than 31 December 2024.


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