Foundation Swiss Young Musicians’ Competition

Supporting the next musical generation

The “Foundation Swiss Young Musicians’ Competition” is dedicated to supporting young musicians in Switzerland; the foundation’s two cornerstones are the search for talent and broad, mass support. The Swiss Young Musicians’ Competition (SJMW), which takes place each year, was initiated in 1975 at the initiative of Gerd Albrecht, then the head conductor of the Zurich Tonhalle-Orchester. Since 1999 it has been organised as a foundation under private law.

Over the years, the SJMW has developed into the largest Swiss music competition for young talents. Every year almost 2,000 music enthusiasts between 8 and 22 years of age take part. The participants have the possibility to compete in various categories. The competition represents a unique institution of national significance. It serves pre-eminently to motivate children and young people to engage with music intensely and actively. The continued interest on the part of young people to make music themselves can be seen in the steadily growing numbers of participants in the competition. Outstanding first prize winners have the opportunity to compete in international competitions with young people from all over Europe or to demonstrate their talent and ability on stage.

But not only the young talents continue to develop, the competition itself does: compositions have been judged since 2008, and a competition was established in 2012 especially for young bands in the categories of jazz, rock and pop.

The Swiss Young Musicians’ Competition promotes active and sustainable support of young people who are enthusiastic about music. The foundation awards a number of prizes and special prizes. Numerous participants take part in the competition more than once. The foundation succeeds in actively accompanying these dedicated young musicians in their development and supporting them in their endeavours, thus making a significant contribution to society.