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Marmande International
Competition Rules 2024

From now on, the Final of the Competition is accompanied by the ORCHESTRE NATIONAL BORDEAUX-AQUITAINE with the help of the Opéra National de Bordeaux. This evolution imposes a certain number of modifications to the rules, notably concerning the choice of pieces, the calendar and the organization of the Final.

We ask the candidates (especially those who have already participated) to pay particular attention to these rules.

This Competition, organized by the Association des Nuits Lyriques de Marmande (hereinafter referred to as the “Organization”), is open to candidates of all nationalities and aims to promote young opera singers.

There are two categories (Opera and Mélodie Française). Candidates may enter one or both categories:


In this category, arias from operas, comic operas, operettas with voices, zarzuelas or musicals (particularly English or American) will be accepted, enabling us to appreciate the vocal, musical and interpretive qualities of the candidates. Variety arias will not be accepted, as the Competition is reserved for singers with basic operatic training.

Each candidate’s application must include a program of 5 arias by at least 3 different composers, at least one of which must be in French. This French aria must be performed in one of the three rounds (Pre-selection, semi-final or final),

Among these 5 arias :

– 2 are chosen by the candidate from the list of arias with orchestra required for the Finals (list appended to these Regulations).

– 3 are freely chosen by the candidate and accompanied by piano.

Arias must be sung in their original language (although French translations are permitted for Viennese operettas only). Transpositions are forbidden except when customary and/or foreseen by the composer.


The candidate performs 1 of the 3 pieces with piano accompaniment on his/her program.

Maximum duration: 4 minutes (only one cut allowed).


The candidate performs one aria from the 2 remaining pieces in his or her list of arias accompanied on the piano.

Maximum duration: 6 minutes (only one cut allowed). If necessary, a second tune may be requested by the Jury.


The candidate must perform the 2 pieces accompanied by the orchestra and included in its program.

The Jury reserves the right to have only one aria sung if the number of finalists is too large. In this case, the aria performed is chosen by the Jury.

Maximum duration of each piece: 8 minutes.



The French melody is a musical form for sung voice and piano, based on a poetic text written and sung in French. Songs and romances are not accepted in this category, especially those from the repertoire generally associated with variété. In case of doubt as to the definition of a work, or to find suggested repertoires of works by female composers, candidates may refer to the following two websites:

– Center International de la Mélodie Française :

– Présence Compositrices-Demandez à Clara :

Présence Compositrices will be happy to provide candidates with a repertoire list, or to guide them in their choice.

In the application form, each candidate proposes a program of 5 French melodies, including at least one work by a female composer, which must be performed during one of the three rounds (Preselections, semi-finals or finals).

Those who choose to compete for the Prix Présence Compositrices must perform a second song by a female composer in the Final. In short, to compete for the Prix Présence Compositrices, candidates must propose a minimum of two songs by female composers in their program, to be performed during the pre-selections or semi-final AND during the Final,

Of course, there’s no reason why candidates can’t include several songs by female composers in their program.


The candidate performs 1 melody chosen from the program proposed in his/her file.

Maximum duration: 4 minutes

Semi-final :

The candidate sings 1 melody from his/her program, different from the one sung in pre-selection.

Maximum duration: 6 minutes. If necessary, a second song may be requested by the Jury.

Final :

The candidate performs 2 melodies:- the first chosen from his/her program and not yet performed.- the second, chosen by the Jury from the pieces included in the candidate’s program and not yet performed.Maximum duration: 8 minutes.

In the case of a cycle, only one melody is sung in the Preselections and Semi-Finals, even if it is shorter than the allotted time. In the (rare) case of a cycle of very short melodies (e.g. Poulenc’s Le Bestiaire), it is possible to perform several melodies, provided you keep strictly to the time limit.



–  Registration implies unreserved acceptance of the present rules and of any changes that may be made between the time the application is sent and the date of the competition. In the event of a dispute, only the version written in French and posted in the venue on the day of the tests will be authoritative.

–  Candidates, whether winners or not, may be offered contracts to participate in the Nuits Lyriques de Marmande (2025 or subsequent editions) or in other productions organized by the Organization.

–  All members of the Jury may propose engagements to candidates or help promote them.

–  For all points not covered by the present rules, any additions or modifications to the rules and, more generally, any questions raised during the course of the competition, the Organization is, in fine, sovereign and the sole decision-maker. Its decisions are final.



The entry criteria for both categories are as follows:

–  born after August 30, 1991 and before August 26, 2006. Exceptional exemptions may be granted. All requests for exemption are examined by the President of the Organization, whose decision is final.

–  submit a detailed CV of professional experience and/or training. The Organization reserves the right to accept or refuse an application. This decision does not have to be justified and is final.

–  have submitted a complete registration file (including all supporting documents) and paid the registration fee corresponding to the category(ies) chosen NO LATER THAN JULY 7, 2024 before midnight (French time). Candidates admitted to the event (whose complete application has been accepted) will receive a confirmation of registration, sent by the Organization, which will be deemed authentic.

A registration fee is required to enter the competition (€60 for 1 category / €70 for 2 categories). This fee must be paid in Euros at the time of registration and forms an integral part of the application. Payments by cheque are not accepted. For European and foreign candidates, money orders, transfers, etc. must include any additional management fees and/or commissions. The net amount received by the Organization must correspond to the registration fee. THE NAME OF THE CANDIDATE MUST APPEAR ON THE TRANSFER. Once the candidate’s registration has been confirmed by the Organization at the time the application is submitted, the registration fee is non-refundable and remains forfeited, even in the event of absence (for whatever reason) and even if participation is called into question for failure to comply with one of the clauses of these rules.


– An artistic curriculum vitae (training and professional activities)

– 1 passport-size photograph (3.5 cm x 4.5 cm) >> Please note, no artistic photos.

– A photocopy of an identity document

– Registration fee (or proof of payment)

All attachments sent by email or via the website must be standardized as follows:

CANDIDATE’S NAME + description of the document . Doc or Pdf or Jpg (only accepted formats).



The program indicated on the registration form may be exceptionally modified until midnight July 31, 2024 (French time). This modification must be duly notified in writing to the Organization and is only valid if confirmed by an e-mail from the Organization. Candidates may not sing the same tune twice.

Given the large number of candidates, the jury attaches particular importance to respecting the duration of the pieces as stipulated in these rules.

A candidate’s performance may be interrupted if the allotted time is exceeded.In the case of arias accompanied on the piano, and with the agreement of the vocal coaches, a break may be made to respect the duration of the rounds.



For each category, the competition is divided into three phases:

Pre-selection by a Pre-selection Committee – Semi-final – Final

Each phase begins with the “French Melody” category and continues with the “Opera” category.


08:45*: Reception of candidates – 10:00*: Start of the Preselections


10h00*: Preselections, continuation and end


10h00* : Semi-final


10h00* : Piano rehearsals with the conductor for the Opera category Final

15h00-18h00* : General performance  for the Opera category Final with the National Bordeaux-Aquitaine Orchestra


15:30* : French Melody Final

20:00* : Opera Final with the National Bordeaux-Aquitaine Orchestra

The announcement of the results and the awarding of the prizes

will take place at the end of the evening, after the deliberations.

*subject to change

To take part in the pre-selection rounds, registered singers must attend the welcome and group photo on the first day of the competition, at 8:45 am, at Théâtre Comedia – 32 rue Léopold Faye – 47200 MARMANDE – FRANCE (venue for all rounds, subject to change).

Each contestant is assigned a number by lottery, which remains the same throughout the competition. Candidates must evaluate their schedule in order to ensure that they appear in the order shown. Each candidate is responsible for punctuality, time management and respecting the order of appearance. Schedules and written instructions posted by the Organization must be strictly adhered to. A candidate who is absent at the time of his or her passage loses the possibility of competing in this round, and is consequently excluded from the competition. Only the Chairman of the Jury may decide to reinstate him/her in the competition and choose to hear him/her at the time when this is possible. Before each round, candidates must present their candidate card.

The deliberations of the Preselection Committee, the Professional Juries and the Student Juries are secret. Their decisions are final and without appeal.

Simple dress is accepted for pre-selections and semi-finals. For the finals (Mélodie Française and Opéra), gala dress is required.



2023 finalists in a category are admitted directly to the semi-finals of the same category in 2024. They must request this when submitting their application.

The Organization has signed specific partnerships with the following opera organizations abroad: Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques in Canada, Concurso San Miguel in Mexico and the Shanghai Singing Competition, enabling candidates selected at these competitions to enter the semi-finals directly. These partnerships may derogate from one or more points of the present rules, without the other candidates being able to lodge a complaint or be prejudiced in any way whatsoever.

All candidates admitted directly to the semi-finals may, at their request, compete in the pre-selections. If they make it through to the semi-final, they must pick up their pass before 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, August 28, 2024.



Candidates will be accompanied exclusively on the piano for the pre-selections, semi-finals and finals of the Mélodie Française category. No other form of accompaniment is accepted (instruments other than the piano, recorded music, etc.), nor is a cappella singing, except where all or part of a piece has been so written by the composer. The Final of the Concours International de Chant de Marmande is accompanied by the Orchestre National Bordeaux-Aquitaine.

Arias must be performed without score.

Several accompanying pianists are provided by the Organization (at no extra cost to candidates). Each candidate may be accompanied by his/her own pianist (at his/her own expense). In this case, the pianist has access to the backstage area only for the duration of the candidate’s performance, and must leave at the end of the performance.

With the exception of the Mélodie Française and Opéra Finals, the Organizing Committee does not schedule rehearsals with pianists (whether external or provided by the Organizing Committee) prior to the Competition rounds.

Candidates must provide the pianists with legible piano/vocal scores of their chosen works in good condition. The Organization reserves the right to cancel the participation of a candidate who is unable to provide the scores, or if one of the scores is illegible or unusable by the pianist. French law prohibits the use of photocopies of scores or illegal printing via the Internet. The candidate will be held responsible if he/she contravenes these provisions.



The prizes represent a total value of €23,100 in Prizes and Co-payments for non-winning Finalists (subject to change). The Jury may, if necessary, decide to award or not to award the Prizes, as well as to divide the prize money for the Special Prizes. In the event of a tie, the value of the prize is divided by the number of candidates.

Insofar as possible, the Prix Génération Opéra pour Jeunes Chanteurs and the Prix Spécial ”Michèle Herbé” should not be combined with any other prize awarded by the Jury of Professionals. The recipient of the Prix Génération Opéra, awarded by the Preselection Committee, must not be older than the following birthdays on the day of the Competition Final: 23 years for sopranos and tenors and 25 years for other voices. The Prix du Public is awarded among the candidates present at the final, in the Opera category only. The Prix des Lycéens may be awarded to a candidate also entered in the Mélodie Française category, or to a semi-finalist.

Prizes are paid for by cheque in the envelope handed over when the results are announced, which also includes a Prize or Finalist certificate. If a winner requests payment by bank transfer outside the euro zone, charges will be deducted from the amount. This request must be made within one month of the Final.

Candidates who have won first prize in a category or the Grand Prix in previous years may no longer compete in that category.

On request, non-finalist candidates may receive a certificate of participation in the competition, stating the level of the test they have achieved.



By registering and accepting these rules, candidates expressly authorize the Organization to capture, reproduce and distribute their image, performances and interpretations. This authorization is given under the following conditions:

– capture and fixation on all known or unknown media (photographs, audio and audiovisual recordings, etc.),

– use and communication of their name and capacity on all media and by all processes,

– broadcasting (live or deferred), presentation to the public and reproduction of recordings, recordings and photographs, for non-commercial purposes of communication, information, promotion and archiving, on all media known or unknown to date, including the Internet, and by all processes (over-the-air, digital, analog, etc.).

This authorization and transfer of recording, capturing, use and broadcasting rights is granted to the Organization or to third parties mandated by it, free of charge, without time limit and for the whole world.

Within the framework of RGPD regulations, candidates are informed that the information collected on their file is recorded in a computerized file by the Organization for their registration in the International Singing Competition. The legal basis for data processing is the administrative management of applications as well as promotion to International Lyric Personalities. The data collected is communicated to the following recipients only: Members of the Jury and of the Jury des Lycéens; Professionals and all persons wishing to propose engagements or to contact them and, in part, to the Spectators of the Competition. Data is kept for a minimum period of 5 years to enable us to support and promote candidates, who may access it, rectify it, request its deletion or exercise their right to restrict its processing. For more information on your rights, visit To exercise your rights or if you have any questions about data processing in this system, please contact: If, after contacting us, you feel that your “Data Protection” rights have not been respected, you may lodge a complaint with the CNIL.



In the event of changes to the duration, suspension, postponement or cancellation of the Singing Competition, without prior notice, for any reason whatsoever, including lack of funding, epidemics, pandemics, conflicts, force majeure or acts of God, the Organization shall not be held liable to the candidates, and shall therefore be released from all charges, reimbursements of expenses and/or compensation to anyone.


Address for all correspondence


18, boulevard Fourcade – Boite n°1  – 47200 MARMANDE – France

Tél. : 33 (0) 5 53 89 68 75   –   –


You propose a program of 5 arias, 2 of which are chosen from this list.


CANDIDE / Bernstein – Cunégonde – Glitter and be gay

ROMEO ET JULIETTE / Gounod – Juliette – Air du poison

MANON / Massenet – Air du Cour la Reine


Pamina – Ach ich fuhl’s

Reine de la nuit – O zittre nicht, mein lieber Sohn

Reine de la nuit – Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen

LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN / Offenbach – Olympia – Les oiseaux dans la charmille

LA FORZA DEL DESTINO / Verdi – Leonora – Pace, pace, mio Dio

LA TRAVIATA / Verdi – Violetta – E strano !… è strano…

TANNHAÜSER / Wagner – Elisabeth – Dich, teure Halle


CARMEN / Bizet

Carmen – Habanera

Carmen – La Séguedille

LA FAVORITA / Donizetti – Leonora – O mio Fernando

LE NOZZE DI FIGARO / Mozart – Cherubino – Voi che sapete

LA FILLE DE MADAME ANGOT / Lecocq – Mlle Lange – Les soldats d’Augereau

LA BELLE HELENE / Offenbach – Hélène – Amours divins

LA CENERENTOLA / Rossini – Cenerentola – Non piu mesta

IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA / Rossini – Rosina – Una voce poco fa


CARMEN / Bizet – Don José – La fleur que tu m’avais jetée

LES PECHEURS DE PERLES / Bizet – Nadir – Je crois entendre encore

L’ELISIR D’AMORE / Donizetti – Nemorino – Una furtiva lagrima

LA FILLE DU REGIMENT / Donizetti – Tonio – Ah mes amis quel jour de fête

ROMEO ET JULIETTE / Gounod – Roméo – Ah lève-toi soleil (version en si bémol majeur)

DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE / Mozart – Tamino – Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön

COSI FAN TUTTE / Mozart – Ferrando – Un’aura amorosa

RIGOLETTO / Verdi – Il Duca – La donna é mobile

MACBETH / Verdi – Macduff – Ah la paterna mano

Barytons et Basses

CARMEN / Bizet – Escamillo – Votre toast, je peux vous le rendre

DON GIOVANNI / Mozart – Leporello – Il catalogo é questo

FAUST / Gounod

Méphisto – Le veau d’or est toujours debout

Valentin – Avant de quitter ces lieux

DIE ENTFÜHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL / Mozart – Osmin – O wie will ich triumphieren


Don Basilio – La Calunnia

Figaro – Largo al factotum

MACBETH / Verdi – Banquo – Come dal ciel precipita

LA TRAVIATA / Verdi – Germont – Di Provenza il mar, il suol

TANNHAUSER / Wagner – Wolfram – O, du mein holder Abendstern (sans l’introduction de l’air)