Two divisions make up the Youth Talent Contest – a junior division for those 9 to 12 years old and a senior division for those 13 to 21 years old. Junior division competition is slated for Sept. 20-22, and senior division competition is set for Sept. 21-29. Cash prizes are awarded to four acts in both age groups. In addition to the crash prize, the senior division Grand Award winner also earns the opportunity to audition with CBS Studios in Hollywood or New York City, and is awarded a scholarship of more than $30,000 to Visible Music College. Last year’s Grand Award winner, vocalist Maddie Claunch, recently auditioned with CBS Studios in Hollywood.
The junior division is made up of the first 200 acts that submit an application. Those who wish to participate in the senior division can qualify by winning a sanctioned local preliminary competition, receiving an at-large invitation from a Mid-South Fair Youth Talent Contest representative or being a 2018 top 20 finalist. Applicants can also submit a video of the performance to the talent committee for consideration