Applying to PRISMA

You can apply for PRISMA via Acceptd, the online application tool. Read the instructions carefully. To start your application, select your instrument by clicking “Select Program” under “Start an Application on the left side of the screen right under the PRISMA logo.

Applications close on February 28, 2023. A list of important academic dates are as follows:

  • November 1, 2022: Opening date for applications (Early Discount Application fee is $50 USD.)
  • December 31, 2022: Last day of Early Discount fee (Application fee increases to $75 USD starting Jan 1, 2023.)
  • February 28, 2023: Last day you can apply
  • June 12-24, 2023: PRISMA Festival & Academy

No. The application fee is non-refundable; however, in the event that PRISMA is forced to cancel its 2022 festival and academy due to COVID-19 restrictions, your application fee will be fully refunded. The safety of everyone is our main concern and PRISMA is committed to following all COVID-19 public health guidelines in our city, province and country.

Click here to view our suggested audition repertoire for each instrument. Please note that you may also use another audition video that you have already prepared, as long as it includes orchestra excerpts.

All applicants will be notified of their audition results by March 31, 2022.

You will receive your acceptance letter via email and will then have seven (7) days to confirm your participation. To confirm, simply reply to the email and pay the down payment to secure your place at PRISMA. If we don’t receive your confirmation within 7 days the next person in line will be accepted.

Concerto Competition

All students accepted at PRISMA can choose to take part in the Concerto Competition. The first round is online, via video submission, in April. Between 10-12 participants will be accepted to take part in the semi-final round.

The semi-finals, with piano accompaniment, take place in the 700-seat concert hall on front of audience and the international jury of guest artists. Two participants will be selected to continue to the finals.

The two finalists will be soloists with the PRISMA Festival Orchestra during the Gala Closing Concert, Friday night week 2. The winner will be announced after intermission at the end of the concert. Finalists will perform their concerto movement again during the Saturday matinee concert.

In order to enter, you must specify on your PRISMA application that you are interested in participating in the competition. Select a movement of a concerto or a solo piece that requires orchestra accompaniment.  Your selection cannot exceed 15 minutes in length.

In order to participate in the first round of the competition, you must provide us with a YouTube link to an unedited video of your piece before April 15, 2022. Please upload your video as “unlisted” or “public”, but not “private” as the international jury all need easy access.

Once your submission has been received, it will be reviewed by the judging panel. Semi-finalists will be announced prior to the start of PRISMA. The semi-final round will take place during PRISMA and is open to the public. Piano accompaniment will be available for the semi-final round.

If you are selected for the semi-final round, ensure that you bring the sheet music for the full orchestra with you. This is in case you are selected for the finals. PRISMA will not order or supply the orchestra parts, so it is important that you come fully prepared. It is easiest to select a piece in the public domain that has parts available online for example in the IMSLP library.

In the past, students have selected concertos that are still copyrighted and ordered score and parts from one of the music rental companies, sent to PRISMA directly. The agreement was made that if the student was not selected to the final rounds only shipping would be charged. To make such arrangements please contact the rental company yourself. Zinfonia is a good resource for that.

In some cases PRISMA may have the parts of your selection in our existing library, so do not hesitate to reach out.

Our international guest artists will serve as the jury for the competition, artistic director Arthur Arnold is the head of the jury and will only vote if there is a tie.


PRISMA charges a program fee to take part in the activities, masterclasses and lessons. You may choose to take part in the accommodation and meal plan. PRISMA has secured competitive prices with its hotel and caterers. For more information about PRISMA’s fees, click here.

Within seven (7) days of acceptance, you must pay a deposit to secure your place at PRISMA. The balance of your fees will be due by April 30, 2023. If you receive late admission (after April 30), the balance will be due within seven (7) days of your being notified of acceptance. Failure to pay your fees on time may result in losing your place at PRISMA.

No, you will be responsible for arranging and paying for your own travel to and from Powell River, British Columbia, Canada. Information about how to get to Powell River can be found here.

Because the flights and ferries are on a limited schedule, make sure you take travel time into consideration before booking any international or regional flights. Feel free to email us if you have any questions.

Yes! One of the core goals of PRISMA is to be accessible and welcoming to the most talented students regardless of financial means. This assistance takes two forms:

1. All students who are accepted into the program will receive a ‘half fellowship’, bringing the tuition cost down.

2.  If you still need financial assistance you may apply for a scholarship. You may be awarded a partial or full scholarship. A partial scholarship helps you to cover part of the program fees, meals and hotel. A full scholarship will cover all costs to take part in the program; program fees, housing and lunches & dinners (not breakfast). If you receive a full scholarship you might be selected for a homestay instead of a hotel. However, all students are still responsible for their own travel costs. Click here to learn more.

Preparing to Attend PRISMA

All students have to practice the repertoire in advance and come fully prepared. There is only one week to prepare for each concert. Also, prepare a minimum of five (5) standard excerpts you want to work on during classes. Preparation of more excerpts is advised.

If you have any questions that are not answered by the website or informational emails, feel free to reach out so that we can provide what you need to know.

Information about the concert repertoire can be found here. All students are expected to come fully prepared. You will receive the orchestra parts digitally at least one month before PRISMA starts.

Yes, you will receive your music ahead of time in digital form, and are expected to print the music, bring it with you and arrive at PRISMA fully prepared to begin orchestra rehearsals immediately. As PRISMA has a very intense schedule, it is important to be well prepared before arrival.

In general, yes, and we ask woodwinds to bring auxiliary instruments (Piccolo, English Horn, Eb Clarinet.). However, we do provide:

  • 5 quality bases (bring your own bow)
  • 2 Lyon & Healy concert grand harps (Style 85 and Chicago)
  • Contra Bassoon
  • Bass Clarinet (if the students cannot bring their own)

There are limited opportunities to rent a quality cello if travel with your own cello is difficult.

PRISMA provides all percussion instruments, but students may bring their own mallets.

Travelling to Powell River

Powell River is located in western Canada, on the Pacific Ocean. It is located on British Columbia’s scenic Sunshine Coast, 130 kilometres (80 miles) northwest of Vancouver. To learn more about this special community, click here.

Powell River is a gorgeous but isolated community and is only accessible by ferry (bus or car) and airplane. For travel information, click here.

Because the flights and ferries are on a limited schedule, make sure you take travel time into consideration before booking any international or regional flights. Feel free to email us if you have any questions.

Please check the Government of Canada website for the current travel requirements.

We also recommend checking with any airline(s) you may be flying with to familiarize yourself with their policies surrounding musical instruments as carry-on and/or checked baggage.

Canada requires visas from certain countries. To find out if you require a visa, click here to search for your country and the necessary requirements. For additional visa information, click here.
If you need a visa we encourage you to apply as soon as you can as processing times take long. We want you to have your visa in time!

PRISMA will provide a letter for you to submit with your visa application. To request a visa letter, please send us an email.

It may take up to 60 days for your visa application to be processed. We recommend contacting your visa office as soon as possible to determine processing times and the requirements you must meet to receive a visa. Do apply right away to get your visa in time.

Accomodations & Meals

All students who select to have their accommodations provided by PRISMA will be staying at the first-class Town Centre Hotel, which is located a short walk from concert and rehearsal spaces and local amenities. You can choose to stay with 3 or 2 in a room or choose your own room, subject to additional costs. Students who receive a full scholarship will stay at a homestay or with 3 in a room.
Please note 3 in a room packages are limited, first come first serve.

Breakfast is not included in the meal package. You can choose to order your breakfast from the menu at the Garden Court Restaurant, in the hotel lobby. The hotel provides PRISMA students with a discount on their breakfasts. There are other breakfast options adjacent to the hotel, such as Tim Hortons, A&W, Starbucks, Subway and McDonalds.

PRISMA offers daily lunch and dinner service during weekdays (Monday – Friday) and on the final Saturday. (Students will be expected to make their own meal arrangements during the middle weekend of PRISMA.) Meals are served at the Recreation Complex were the concert hall is located. All students are encouraged to take part in the meal plan as it corresponds with the rehearsal and lesson schedule. Healthy, wholesome meals are provided by a reputable caterer. For the costs of the meal plan see:

Yes, PRISMA can accommodate your special requirements, as long as you let us know ahead of time. When you are preparing to attend PRISMA, you will receive an email asking if you have any special requirements, and it is important to let us know as early as possible so that we can make suitable arrangements for you.

Yes. If you choose to book your own accommodations you may still take part in the meal plan. Please let us know in advance if you plan to do so.

What to Expect at PRISMA

You can learn more about what PRISMA offers here. You will receive a detailed daily schedule before your arrival.

Students will have some time to practice, and limited practice space will be available upon request, subject to availability.

PRISMA has several venues for rehearsals, concerts, and lessons. All major concerts will take place at the Evergreen Theatre at the Powell River Recreation Complex. All venues are within walking distance of the hotel and each other. Click here to learn more about them.