Cookie Consent by Free Privacy Policy Generator Bases | Arnuero International Chamber Music Competition



1 Announcement

The Arnuero City Council, as part of its remit, is joining the effort made by various public and private entities in the region of Cantabria to promote the dissemination of classical music and further the musical training of our young performers. To this end, the Arnuero City Council announces the 21th Arnuero International Chamber Music Competition (CIMCA), which will be held in Arnuero, Cantabria, the final for which will be held in person on July 5, 6 and 7, 2024. The contestants will be screened beforehand using the video recordings sent in during the period specified herein.

The Competition has traditionally been staged as a GATHERING of young musicians, who were encouraged to stay in the municipality of Arnuero during the competition so that the young performers could live together, interact and exchange experiences. This year, due to the Covid-19 health measures in place, the presence of young musicians will be limited to the groups in the final, as long as there are no public health circumstances that impede it.

The music competition also aims to provide a support platform for young performers who seek a professional career in stable chamber music groups. To this end, agreements have been entered into with various institutions, such as the Botín Foundation, the Santander International Festiva, the Real Sociedad Menéndez Pelayo and the Jesús de Monasterio Music Conservatory in Santander; as a result, part of the prize consists of performing a paid concert that allows the winners to play in prestigious music festivals. Convinced that the best possible prize is to help launch a musical career, the Competition intends to expand this type of collaboration in the future.

In order to promote the creation of chamber music and make it possible for composers to perform their music and have it heard, the Competition commissions the composition of works to be premiered at the opening concert of the competition. In keeping with this commitment to contemporary music, an award is established in honor of RICARDO HONTAÑÓN, an invaluable partner of our Competition, to encourage our contestants to include in their repertoire works composed from 1945 onwards.

Instrumental chamber music

Each chamber group must have between two and six musicians, but it cannot be a chamber orchestra, meaning it is limited to one performer to a part.

Each group will have its own name. Once registered with the competition organizer, no changes to the composition of the group will be accepted, save for exceptional and duly justified reasons.

2 Important dates


From February 1 to April 30, 2024


On May, 2024


On July 5, 2024.

Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción de Arnuero


July 6 - 8 participants


July 7- 4 participants

3 Composition of the jury

3.1 President:

Cibrán Sierra, violín (Quartet Quiroga)

3.2 Members:

Helena Poggio, cello (Quartet Quiroga)

Josep Puchades, viola (Quartt Quiroga)

Aitor Hevia, violín (Quartet Quiroga)

Israel López Estelche, composer

4 Awards and prizes

4.1 First prize

1.500 euros, certificate and paid concert in the Creando Futuros (Creating Futures) series at the Botín Center in Santander.

4.2 Second prize

1.000 euros, certificate and paid concert in the Marcos Históricos (Historical Settings) series of the Santander International Festival.

4.3 “RICARDO HONTAÑÓN” Award for the best performance of a work written after 1945: 500 euros and a certificate.

4.4 Jesús de Monasterio Award for the most outstanding violinist:

Certificate and Concert, sponsored by the Real Sociedad Menéndez Pelayo, at the Casa Museo Jesús de Monasterio, located in Casar de Periedo, Cantabria.

4.5 Award to the most outstanding group from Cantabria:

Certificate and Concert unpaid in the Unusual Music Week organized every year by the “Jesús de Monasterio” Music Conservatory in Santander.

All the groups participating in this 21th edition of CIMCA will be eligible for this award, although at least one of the group's musicians must have been born in Cantabria.

(All prizes will be paid by bank transfer and will be subject to the legally required tax withholding.)

4.6 Concerts associated with the awards:

By accepting a cash prize, the winning group agrees to play a concert in one of the institutions with which the Arnuero City Council has signed a cultural partnership agreement.

5 Repertoire

Each instrumental group will contribute three complete works from different periods and styles that, together, do not exceed fifty minutes and have a minimum duration of approximately 30 minutes. It is an absolute requirement that all the works submitted be complete, with all their movements, and for them to have been originally intended for the number of performers in the group, although the contestants may attest the impossibility of satisfying this requirement if there are no works designed for their group size.

For those who wish to apply for the RICARDO HONTAÑÓN prize, one of the three works in their repertoire must have been composed in 1945 or later.

The choice and quality of the program will be part of the jury's evaluation criteria.

6 Organization of the Competition


6.1 The registration period begins on February 1, 2024, and ends at 23:59 p.m. on April 30, 2024. The registration form will be available from the first day of the registration period on the Competition's website (

6.2 Registration requires:

  1. Completing the registration form, along with a digital copy of all the documents requested therein, exclusively through the competition’s website 
  2. Sending an audiovisual recording with a performance of one movement, of the contestants' choice, of each of the three works in the repertoire, lasting a maximum of 25 minutes. The video will begin by displaying the group's name and the movement and name of the work being performed. Each movement thus performed is to be recorded in a single take, with no cuts or edits. The videos cannot have any editing touch-ups. They can be sent in DVD format by postal mail to the Arnuero City Council at the address shown in these rules, in a digital file format hosted on a shared access storage website, or by specifying the URL of an online audiovisual document. In any case, it must be free for the organizers to access.
  3. Each group member must complete the registration individually.
  4. By submitting the application form, you consent to these rules.
  5. The registration will be valid upon receipt of the form and payment of the registration fee. These rights, which constitute a bond of commitment to participate in every phase of the competition, will be one hundred euros (100 €) per group, and is to be paid into the following web page: The amount of the inscription fee will be refunded once the participation of the group has finished in the competition.
  6. The participants may not be over 28 years of age on the date the competition is held.
  7. Underage contestants must have their parents' permission to participate in the competition.
  8. Any contestants who were awarded first prize in any of the previous editions of this competition may not register again as part of the same group. To this end, the group will be deemed to be different if at least half of its members are new.


6.3 Duly registered participants who have emailed the documentation required in Article 6.2 will be eligible for the competition. Any participants who have not paid the registration fee by the deadline will not be eligible.


On May, 2024

6.4 The groups that will participate in person in the qualifying auditions phase will be selected by the jury after its members, as a group, evaluate the recordings provided by the participants.

The jury will select a maximum of eight groups to advance to the qualifying auditions phase. Its decision, which will be final, will be published on the competition's website, will be announced on May, 2024 and on social media as well as on various media outlets. The groups in the semifinal will also be informed at the email address provided in the registration form. Said groups must confirm their participation in person on the scheduled dates. If any group declines the invitation, the Jury may invite another group previously designated as a substitute.



July 5

6.5 The preselected groups and the jury will be presented at 8:00 p.m. on July 5 at the church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción de Arnuero.

This will be followed by the opening concert by Quartet Quiroga members of the jury for the Competition.

At the end of the concert, the order in which the preselected groups will perform will be determined in a draw that all the groups in question are required to attend.


July 6- 8 participants

6.6 The purpose of the qualifying auditions phase is to select the four groups that will compete in the Final. They will take place on Saturday, July 6, 2024 at 4:00 p.m.

Each group must play a movement from each of the three works in the repertoire, though they may choose which ones.

At the end of the auditions, the jury will announce the names of the four groups selected to participate in the final, as well as the order in which they will perform, which will be determined by drawing lots.


July 7 - 4 participants

6.7 The final will take place at 6:00 p.m. on July 7. The groups in the final will have to perform the work chosen by the jury from among the movements in the repertoire submitted to the competition.

The name of the winners will be made public at the end of the performances, after the jury's deliberation. This will be followed by the awards ceremony featuring officials, members of the jury and the competition's sponsors. 

The venue for in-person events will be determined by the organization a few days before they are to be held, depending on the COVID-19 health situation, in order to ensure the safest one possible

7 Organization

7.1 Material available

An upright piano, a grand piano and music stands will be made available to the contestants.

7.2 Venue, dates and times

The rules for participating in the 2024 edition are subject to potential modifications and changes as required by the situation associated with the COVID-19 health crisis. If any changes are made, they will be reported to the interested parties through the Competition's various communication channels.

The measures and recommendations issued by health authorities will be applied and enforced at all times for the duration of the contest.

If the restrictions imposed in all or part of Spain as a result of the health crisis do not allow the in-person performances to take place, in-person events may be revamped, or even held online if any of the group's members live in an area that is under strict lockdown measures. In this case, the finalists will send to the Competition organizers, on the date specified by the latter, a video of their performance of the piece to be played, in a single take, with no cuts or edits, not even between movements.

7.3 Funding for lodging and transportation.

On the nights of July 5, 6 and 7, the finalists will stay, at the Competition's expense, in a double room in establishments in the municipality.

In addition, the City Council has allocated funds for the groups to travel to the contest venue. The City Council will distribute, as per its criteria, the transportation funds among the participants based on their location and on the budget available for this purpose.

7.4 Recording of the contest.

By completing and submitting the registration form, each contestant authorizes the Arnuero City Council to photograph them and to record all the performances in the competition. The images and/or audio or material resulting from the recording may be exploited by the Arnuero City Council, including online, for cultural, educational or research purposes on a non-profit basis.

The contestants awarded any of the prizes that entail participation in a concert in the "Creating Futures" series at the Botín Center, or in the "Historical Settings" series of the Santander International Festival, or in the Casa Museo de Jesús de Monasterio, or in the Jesús de Monasterio Conservatory, must also give their consent to record the entire concert. They also authorize its broadcast and transmission under the terms provided in the partnership agreement signed between the Arnuero City Council and the aforementioned institutions

Final clause

Any aspects not covered in these rules shall be decided by the Organizing Committee in agreement with the Jury. Likewise, the former may decide whether to cancel the competition for reasons of force majeure, in which case, the reasons will be explained and the registration fees will be refunded. By completing the registration form, candidates accept the content of each and every one of the clauses herein.

Arnuero, January 2024.


Ayuntamiento de Arnuero


Gobierno de Cantabria
Fundación Botín
La Sociedad
Festival Internacional Santander
Ars Scientia Dvabvs pariter