The Young Artist Series is a national program of the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Associations. It is open to all students who are studying with a member of CFMTA/FCAPM. The Young Artist Series consists of regional competitions/auditions and performing tours. The performer for each reach regional tour is chosen through auditions or competitions. Musicians in all disciplines have the opportunity to apply for the Young Artist Series and although the majority of Young Artists have been pianists, many vocalists, violinists, cellists and other instrumentalists have been represented in the Young Artist Series.

The Young Artist Tours are held in all regions of Canada. The tours recognize the talent of young Canadian performers and gives them the opportunity to be the performing artist in a concert tour arranged for their region. As well as being an exhilarating opportunity for the Young Artist, it has also been very satisfying to audiences throughout Canada who have the opportunity to hear the high standard of performance that these Young Artist’s bring to the concert in the communities that they tour.

The tours have national, regional and local convenors. The branches in the various regions present the Young Artist in concert in their community. The lengths of the tours have varied. The Atlantic Region and British Columbia have had tours from four to ten concerts. The Western tour, which includes the provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba, has had up to sixteen concerts in their tour. The Young Artist tours are held biennially.

The Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Associations is pleased to assist the Young Artist Tours by covering travel expenses for the Young Artist and their Collaborative Artist, as well as some advertising costs. The Young Artist Tour Funding is sustained by a levy from the dues of each member, interest from the bequest of Lyell Gustin and a $75.00 return from each branch sponsoring a recital.

We are truly proud to support our Young Artists and provide them with a venue to further their musical aspirations and, in many cases, their musical careers.



The Young Artist Series had it’s beginnings in 1941 when Lyell Gustin (1895-1988), a prominent Saskatoon music teacher, implemented his idea of a concert tour to provide performance experience for promising young musicians in Western Canada. In that year, an exchange was arranged between his studio and that of Myrtle Ruttan Patterson of Winnipeg. Neil Chotem, who was to become a leading Canadian music personality, represented the Gustin studio and Gordon Kushner, well-known for his association with the Royal Conservatory of Toronto, represented the Winnipeg studio of Myrtle Ruttan Patterson.

In 1942 Lyall Gustin approached the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Associations and the series was launched, eventually taking in all four Western provinces. For a number of years, there were two recital tours; one in the spring and the other in the fall. The tour included Ontario for a time, with one set of artists representing the West and, on the following tour, the East being represented. In 1980, Ontario began its own tour and in 1985, the Maritime region joined the program. For some years, the Western tour continued in Saskatchewan and Manitoba only. Presently, tours are held in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba combined, Ontario and the Maritime region, thereby expanding Lyell Gustin’s original vision into a national concept.

Throughout the years, many Young Artists have entered the music field as professional performers or have gone on to become leaders in music education in private studios, music schools and universities. Though the list is too long to mention each name, former Young Artists have included Angela Cheng, Andrew Dawes, Marylou Dawes, Valdine Anderson, Margot Sim and Jamie Syer.

For information on the Young Artist Series in your region, please contact:

Louisa Lu
Louisa Lu
Lynn Johnson
British Columbia
Sonia Hauser
Lynne Oliver
Rachel Dueck

Past Winners

For past winners - please check out our Archive site - please note, this is a work in progress