2020 YoungArts winner Tyron Reese

Em Watson, Courtesy YoungArts

Calling Artists Ages 15-18! The 2021 National YoungArts Application is Now Open

Now through October 16, high school students aged 15-18 (or in grades 10-12) can apply for the 2021 National YoungArts Competition. Spanning a wide range of art forms from photography to writing to dance, the competition recognizes emerging young artists and their accomplishments. Awarded artists receive cash prizes up to $10,000 and opportunities to work closely with mentors such as Mikhail Baryshnikov and Debbie Allen through a combination of online and in-person programs. Finalists get the opportunity to participate in the National Young Arts Week intensive program, and are eligible for nomination to the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. Past dance awardees include celebrated choreographer Camille A. Brown and Desmond Richardson, co-founder and co-artistic director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet.


Submissions are selected through a blind judging process, and are evaluated by an independent panel. Applicants must pay a non-refundable $35 submission fee and provide the required audition and portfolio materials via the competition's Acceptd application program.

While this year's competition requires some shifting to online programming in light of COVID-19, chair of the YoungArts board of trustees Sarah Arison reiterates the importance of supporting young artists during this time. "We are aware of how keenly the world needs what artists can provide, today and tomorrow," she says. "For this reason, as we look ahead to 2021, we are expanding our network of support to better serve past, present and future YoungArts award winners."

Interested artists can sign up for email updates here. Further information, including the application form, is available on the YoungArts website and social media pages.

Latest Posts


Courtesy ABC

Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Alicia Mae Holloway Talks About Her Time on ABC's “The Bachelor”

Bunheads tuning in to the season premiere of ABC's "The Bachelor" on January 4 may have recognized a familiar face: Dance Theatre of Harlem's Alicia Mae Holloway, literally bourréeing out of a limousine to greet bachelor Matt James. While Holloway unfortunately didn't get a rose that night, she did thoroughly enjoy being the long-running reality franchise's first professional-ballerina contestant, as she told Pointe in a recent Zoom call.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Carla Fracci and Stephen Jefferies in "La Esmeralda" (1987)

Carla Fracci, a former principal dancer of La Scala Ballet in Milan, is among the rare class of ballerinas who continued to perform into her 50s and beyond. Romantic ballets were her calling card throughout her career. In 1987, when Fracci was 51, she was featured in a television special, dancing reconstructed 19th-century ballets in the style of historical ballerinas. In this clip of La Esmeralda from the program, Fracci and her partner Stephen Jefferies, a former principal at The Royal Ballet, deliver an extraordinary performance, capturing the verve and spirit of their characters.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

Ask Amy: How Can I Make the Most of Performance Opportunities in a Pandemic?

My school is connected to a professional company that operates on a show-to-show basis. Students can audition for company performances when they're 15. My 15th birthday is in February, and I think that our directors are choosing people to participate in virtual performances based off of whether they have performed with the company before. This was supposed to be my big first year with the company, but COVID-19 has changed that. How do I make it known that I want to participate? Do you think I should wait until things are more normal? —Lila
Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks