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DAN School Music Theatre Competition for Ontario High School Students

DAN School Music Theatre Competition
for Ontario High School Students










Callista Foti, a grade 11 student at Alexander Mackenzie High School in Richmond Hill, ON, has been drawn to the stage since she was a little girl. She has been in a wide range of musical theatre productions such as The Drowsy Chaperone (Drowsy), Theory Of Relativity (Sara), Into the Woods (Lucinda), Newsies (Katherine), 13: The Musical (Molly), Hairspray (Tracy) and originating roles in new musicals including Super School (Gwen) and Red Letter Day (Kelly), a new musical that was filmed and is scheduled to premiere this year. Callista is a trained vocalist who has won many vocal awards and scholarships including Most Promising Classical Singer (NATS). She has been selected 5 consecutive years to compete at the OMFA provincials in both musical theatre and classical and is currently working towards her Level 9 Royal Conservatory of Music exam. Callista enjoys writing her own songs and is grateful to share her love for the arts in all she does!

Ainsleigh MacInnis is a 16-year-old musician, song writer, vocalist, and actress enrolled in grade 10 at Bishop Smith Catholic High School in Pembroke, ON. She studies piano, guitar, and voice, and competes annually in the Kiwanis Music Festival. During last year’s festival, she placed first in five of six categories, and was recommended to participate in the 2021 OMFA Provincial Finals, placing second in the Junior Musical Theatre. She has written and composed two original songs, one of which is named, “The Hero in You”, which placed among the top 100 entries in the 2019 CBC’s Searchlight Final Competition. She enjoys teaching piano to younger students and is an active member of the community youth theatre company “Streetlight Theatre.”

Victoria Mnatsakanyan, a grade 11 student at Lawrence Park Collegiate Institute, Toronto, ON, started singing around the same time as she began yelling and started musical theatre at the age of 12 years old. She has starred in on-stage productions such as School of Rock (Rosalie Mullins), Fame (Carmen Diaz), Once On This Island (Ti Moune), and Mamma Mia (Sophie). Additionally, she starred in several shows with Bravo Academy for the Performing Arts including Anne of Green Gables (Marilla Cuthbert), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Ensemble), The Theory of Relativity (Catherine), and most recently, The Addams Family (Wednesday Addams). Outside of musical theatre, Victoria is currently directing several productions at her school and is part of the school choir and house band. In her spare time, Victoria loves to read, cook, and (safely!) spend time with her friends and family.

Carly Montgomery is a grade 10 who attends T.A. Blakelock High School in Oakville, ON. She trains at CBY Music & Performing Arts and Grace Academy of Dance. She has performed in multiple musicals, including as Hope Harcourt in Anything Goes, and Serena Katz in Fame. She strapped on her first pair of dance shoes at age 3 and has been taking dance lessons ever since, even dancing in Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom parade. Carly is an avid singer-songwriter, accompanying herself on both guitar and piano. She will be going to the 2022 OMFA provincials for pop vocal with her own composition. Carly won first place at the 2020 OMFA provincial competition for RCM Level 5 Voice. She recently completed Level 6 Conservatory Canada Contemporary Idioms Voice, earning 92.4%. Carly is currently rehearsing the role of Annabeth Chase in The Lightning Thief, which will be performed in Hamilton this spring.

Kelsie Myers is a Grade 11 student at St. Peter’s Catholic Secondary School in Barrie Ontario. Kelsie has been singing for 9 years and has competed in several vocal competitions including Barrie Music Festival, NATS Vocal Competition, and the Moving Art Music Festival. Kelsie also participates in musical theatre. She has been a part of Moving Art’s Triple Threat program for six years and has been in a variety of shows including Beauty and the Beast Jr and The Theory Of Relativity. She is currently rehearsing for a production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee where she will be playing Olive Ostrovsky.  Outside of music and theatre, Kelsie plays Rep Soccer and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Isabel Silva is a Grade 9 student currently attending Etobicoke School of the Arts and majoring in Musical Theatre. She has taken vocal lessons for 8 years and is extremely passionate about performing. She has appeared in multiple musical productions including The Addams Family (Wednesday Addams), Anne of Green Gables (Anne Shirley), and The Lightning Thief (Clarisse). She has recently received Best of Class at the OMFA Provincials as well as multiple 1st place awards from the Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival. In her free time, Isabel enjoys doing creative makeup looks, baking, and dancing!

The DAN School of Drama and Music 2022 Music Theatre Competition for Ontario High School Students (grades 9-12) is co-presented with the Ontario Registered Music Teachers’ Association. 

The Competition consists of two rounds with the finals taking place on Friday afternoon, July 22, 2022, as part of the ORMTA 2022 Provincial Convention, to be held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON.

Three prizes will be awarded: 1st place-$1,500, 2nd place-$1,000 and 3rd place-$500 (CDN).

The preliminary round for this competition will be by video submission. The competitor’s video recording, along with other application material, will be uploaded to the DAN School of Drama and Music website.

Up to six performers will be invited to perform in the Finals. The deadline for submitting an application is April 1st, 2022, following the instructions at the bottom of this page. 

Competition Philosophy:

This competition follows the DAN School of Drama and Music’s philosophy of “music theatre” as an evolving and inclusive term that encompasses many subgenres of music + theatre (and/or dance), including musical theatre, operetta, opera, cabaret, avant-garde music theatre, and others. We support the development of young artists who will thrive when performing in a variety of these styles.

Additionally, this competition is designed to nurture and recognize the best young music theatre talent in Ontario in an environment that fosters and supports the development of versatile and creative performers. This philosophy also underlies the DAN School’s Bachelor of Music Theatre degree which is cooperatively presented with St. Lawrence College, Brockville Campus, where students complete two years of study concentrating primarily on singing, dancing and acting, followed by two years at the DAN School with opportunities for more academically focused classes in addition to further studies in performance.

Eligibility and Requirements:

  1. Competitors must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents, who reside in Ontario and attend an Ontario high school (grades 9-12) or have their parents provide a letter indicating home schooling at the high school age and level of grade 9-12.
  2. Competitors must not have graduated from high school prior to January 1, 2022.
  3. Music Theatre Competition competitors may also enter the ORMTA Provincial Vocal Competition and/or the ORMTA Provincial Instrumental Competition but not the ORMTA Provincial Young Artist Competition. In particular, there should be no duplication of repertoire between the Music Theatre Competition and ORMTA Provincial Vocal Competition.
  4. As a rule, competitors are responsible for their own expenses (travel, accommodation, accompanists, etc.). However, if a selected finalist is experiencing financial hardships that prevent them from participating, an opportunity will be provided to request support from the DAN School.


  1. The programme must contain a minimum of 15 minutes of repertoire and must not exceed 20 minutes in total length, including accompaniment.
  2. Competitors must perform at least three, and no more than five, contrasting selections from Music Theatre productions that have received fully staged, professional performances. Selections from musicals that have only been workshopped are NOT permitted. Competitors will be judged on their whole performance package, including selection of repertoire, interpretation, and program arrangement with regards to contrast, appropriateness and suitability.
  3. Repertoire selections must be contrasting in style and tempo. At least one selection must be from a Broadway musical.
  4. The use of a chair or stool is permitted and a selection of these will be available for competitors to use. Additionally, a very small number of props or wardrobe accessories are permitted. These must be limited to items that can be placed on a small table at the side of the stage and be used in such a way that does not disrupt the flow of the performance.
  5. No microphone amplification is permitted.
  6. The same programme must be performed for both the preliminary and final round.
  7. The application form must contain all the details of the competitor’s repertoire for the programme, including composers and lyricists, the names of the shows the selections are from, and the performance times. Selections must be listed in the order in which they will be performed. 
  8. Competitors must perform all selections from memory. Collaborative pianists must use a published or licensed printing of the music. The use of photocopied material is prohibited. Competitors must provide a published or licensed printing of their entire program of music for the adjudicators on the day of the competition. If needed, the DAN School can provide a pianist for the competitor’s final round, noting that the competitor will have to pay the pianist a reasonable fee for this service.
  9. All competitors must submit with their application the following: 
    • a photo
    • a short biography (150 words maximum), written as if for a professional recital programme, beginning with a summary of the applicant’s musical accomplishments and briefly mentioning other interests as space allows 
    • a signed letter from a high school teacher or principal confirming the competitor’s high school enrolment, or a letter from a parent indicating home schooling at a high school age and level 
    • a signed DAN School Image Consent Form by the competitor, parent or guardian as required 
    • for the repertoire performed on the video, provide the title of the selection, show title from which the selection is taken, as well as the names of the composer and lyricist
    • URL of the applicant’s video performance.

Video Guidelines:

  • While the selected finalists must perform all selections with piano accompaniment, it is acceptable to use pre-recorded accompaniments for the first round. However, it does need to be stressed that more nuanced performances are often obtained when working with a live piano accompaniment. It is fine to use a combination of live piano and pre-recorded accompaniments.
  • All selections must be placed on one single video, but each selection can be recorded separately and then combined onto one video prior to submission.
  • The performance of each individual selection must be a one-take recording with no editing or splicing.
  • Camera placement, steadiness (with a stand), lighting and source of sound, all play a part in the quality of the video. Videos made with a phone are completely acceptable.  It is strongly suggested that the camera angle remain consistent throughout the performance.
  • It is suggested that you upload the video to your own YouTube channel as an “UNLISTED” video and paste this link into the online application form.  Following this process ensures that only people with the link can view the video.

Deadlines and Application Fees:

  • An application fee of $25 (non-refundable) must be paid using a credit card through the DAN School Eply account which will made available to all applicants when submitting their application.
  • A link to the Online Application Form for the DAN School 2022 Music Theatre Competition will be posted on this webpage in early 2022. Online submission of all application material will begin on March 1st, 2022 and must be uploaded by April 1st, 11:59 PM, 2022. We anticipate being able to contact the finalists by May 1st, 2022.
  • No late applications will be accepted.  

For more information, please contact John Burge, DAN School Music Theatre Competition Convener: burgej@queensu.ca.