Dorothy Sutton Performance Festival

Registration Deadline - Friday, September 24, 2021 5 pm

Fees Postmark Date - Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Audition Date - Saturday, October 2, 2021

Local Showcase Recitals - Sunday, October 3, 2021

Established in 1980 by Dorothy Sutton, the Dorothy Sutton Performance Festival provides an opportunity for talented music students to participate in a Pennsylvania Music Teachers Association (PMTA) State Festival Showcase Recital. To assure high standards for the Showcase Recitals, students must audition and qualify in a local preliminary audition and must demonstrate a knowledge of music theory by passing a written theory exam with a minimum grade of 85%.


Repertoire Requirements:

Two (2) memorized pieces of a contrasting nature by different composers, preferably from two (2) different eras in the more advanced levels.

All selections must be a minimum of sixteen (16) measures without repeats, including elementary level students. Simplifications, or arrangements are NOT acceptable at the intermediate and advanced levels unless the original composer is the arranger (ie. Liszt

transcriptions, Brahms Waltzes). Unacceptable repertoire includes: arrangements of movie, Broadway, or pop songs, hymns, organ literature, etc.; simplified or partial versions of classical repertoire - anything not originally composed for piano solo.

Local Fee: $17.00 per student (non-refundable)

Requirements for 2021 will be updated this summer.


Performance Requirements:

  • Music scores are not required for the judges in 2020.

  • Vocalists: Check with your teacher about accompaniment requirements for 2020.

  • Performances may not exceed fifteen (15) minutes and may be adjusted by the local chairperson.


Theory Tests in 2020:

  • Theory tests will be given by your teacher.

  • Re-takes are not permitted.

  • Students are not permitted to see or take the test before the designated test date.


2020 State Showcase Recital requirements, students must:

  • Reside in the State of Pennsylvania (this rule does not apply to the local level).

  • Receive an overall rating of Superior

  • Receive at least an 85% on the theory test (for levels P-5). For theory test levels 6 and above, the minimum 85% score is not required.


Students eligible to participate in the State Showcase Recital:

  • A non-refundable fee will apply. The fee in 2019 was $13.00. The 2021 fee is TBA.

  • Your teacher will give you more information, if applicable.

NEW FOR 2020 :

  • Adjudications are limited to solos and accompanied instruments / voice. Duets & ensembles are cancelled for this year.

  • Recorded accompaniments will be allowed and encouraged for concerti, voice, and accompanied solo instruments.

  • Online Registration.

  • Video performances will be judged online.

  • Music Theory tests levels 6 and above are optional for students who previously have scored 85% or higher on the Level 5 test.
    (Local Chairs and State Chair know who they are.)

  • Theory testing and grading will be handled by each teacher.

  • State Festival will be a YouTube recital that can be shared with friends and family.

  • Change in State Recital Requirements: Student eligibility requires a Superior performance rating and minimum test score of 85% on
    Levels P-5. Students with a Superior Performance
     rating but with a theory score below 85% on Level 6 and above may also participate in state recitals.



  • Music Scores

  • Mailing papers for registration (no application form, rating sheets, or student list)

Dorothy Sutton Performance Festival Forms & Resources

DPSF Rating Sheet

DPSF Student Parent Letter

Judge Instructions

Computer Generated Music

DPSF Teacher Instructions

DPSF Dates & Actions

Teacher Code Checker