Opera, peopled with sprawling egos and intense physicality, is as close to professional sports as classical music gets. It’s fitting, then, that this city’s top vocal training ground, the Academy of Vocal Arts, starts every season with the Giargiari Bel Canto Competition, a public contest among their students. The young singers compete for cash prizes before a panel of judges (they change every year; even the occasional music critic gets a shot, including this writer a few years back). There is also an audience-favorite segment with the victor determined by acclamation. It can get a bit boisterous — fortunately AVA discourages the hurling of rotten tomatoes.
Fri., Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m., $29-$49, Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad St., 215-735-1685, avaopera.org.