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New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA)

2017-18 Schedule

Solo and Ensemble Festivals
Piano Only:
March 9-10 at the College of St. Rose
Registration form

ALL NYSSMA Solos and Ensembles, including All-State:
June 1-2 at Shaker Junior High School
Registration form

Please note – we will need help to host this year’s festival! Keep an eye out for a volunteer sign-up this spring. Thank you!

Major Organization Festivals
Choral Majors:
April 17-19 at Bethlehem High School

Instrumental Majors:
April 16-17 at Shaker High School

What is NYSSMA?

The New York State School Music Association is a professional organization which represents more than 6,000 music teachers across New York State. It is affiliated with MENC: The National Association for Music Education.

Each spring NYSSMA sponsors music festivals across the state, which local school districts volunteer to host.

At the Solo and Ensemble Festivals, students have the opportunity, alone or in a small group, to perform a piece of music that is selected from the NYSSMA Manual. The music is listed in six levels according to difficulty. Students play before an adjudicator and are evaluated on their performance. A grade and written critique are given, based on established criteria such as tone, pitch and rhythmic accuracy, intonation, and sight-reading. The Solo and Ensemble Festival gives students the chance to practice the audition procedure, which musicians often go through. The feedback students receive from the judge will help them grow musically. In addition, students often use this NYSSMA rating for acceptance into performing groups outside school.

Click here to go to the NYSSMA website to learn more about the All-State process.

Major Organization Festivals are opportunities for music teachers to bring an exceptional ensemble (band, chorus, orchestra, or jazz ensemble) to perform for two specially trained adjudicators. Music must be selected from the NYSSMA Manual. The ensemble is given taped and written comments on their performance, and awarded a rating such as Gold, Silver, or Bronze.