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CUSO Overture Composition Competition

Deadline for submissions: January 1, 2018

In partnership with Music Alive to promote the creation and performance of new music, the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra announces a composition competition to be held during the 2017-18 season. CUSO, Music Director and Conductor Stephen Alltop, and Music Alive composer-in-residence Stacy Garrop invite people between the ages of 8 and 108 to write a three-minute work to be performed by the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra at a subscription concert in Krannert Center for the Performing Arts during the 2018-2019 season.

Process and Guidelines (PDF)
Entry Form (PDF)

Eligibility

The competition is open to composers between the ages of 8 and 108 who are residents of Champaign-Urbana, Illinois or live within the region that spans a 200-mile radius of Champaign, Illinois.

Selection Process

Submissions will be reviewed by Maestro Stephen Alltop and Dr. Stacy Garrop. Five finalists will be selected and must be available to participate in a reading session/workshop on Saturday, March 3, 2018 in Urbana, IL. The public will be invited to attend the workshop. Maestro Alltop and the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra will rehearse all five finalist compositions during the workshop. Finalists will receive an audio recording of the full workshop session for their private, non-commercial use.

After the workshop, up to two compositions will be selected for performance by CUSO in the Foellinger Great Hall of the Krannert Center of the Performing Arts at a subscription concert of the 2018-2019 season. Dr. Garrop will mentor the two winners on preparing their scores for their performances, and the winning composers will receive professional-quality digital recordings of the CUSO concert performance of their works for their private, non-commercial use.

Competition Guidelines

  • The piece must have a duration of three minutes or less. Pieces with a longer duration will not be considered. Mark the duration of your piece at the top of the first page.
  • The instrumentation may not exceed 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, and 2 bassoons (with a maximum of 2 auxiliary instruments); 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, and 1 tuba; 3 percussionists; 1 timpanist; harp OR piano; and strings (10 first violins, 8 second violins, 7 violas, 6 cellos, 4 double basses). Pieces that are scored for smaller forces are fine; pieces that are scored for larger forces than this will not be considered.
  • There may be ONE entry per composer.
  • Entries must be submitted electronically; paper submissions will not be accepted. Your entry must include your full score, saved in PDF format, and a completed entry application. Send your complete entry by email to: scores@cusymphony.org
  • Audio may be submitted along with the full score, but is optional. If you have audio, please save it as an MP3 file and attach to the same email. A live recording is preferred; MIDI is acceptable.
  • Finalists must be available to participate in a reading session/workshop on Saturday, March 3, 2018 in Urbana, IL. Finalists will be offered complimentary tickets to attend the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra’s March 2nd subscription concert on the evening before the workshop. Finalists who live more than 90 miles from Champaign will be offered one night of hotel accommodations to attend the March 3, 2018 workshop.
  • Download the CUSO Overture Composition Competition Entry Form. Entries must be received by 5:00 pm on January 1, 2018. Incomplete or late submissions will not be considered.

For more information, please contact Dr. Garrop at composer@cusymphony.org

Timeline

January 1, 2018, 5:00 pm: deadline for submissions.
January 20, 2018: Five finalists will be announced and all applicants will be notified.
February 12, 2018: Deadline for finalists to submit one set of single parts to the Champaign-Urbana Symphony; the Orchestra will make the duplications of the string parts.
March 3, 2018: CUSO reading session and workshop of five finalists’ works; up to two winners will be selected after the workshop.
Spring/Summer 2018: Dr. Garrop will mentor the winners on their works.
2018/2019 Season: CUSO will perform the winning compositions during a subscription concert.

 

The CUSO Overture Composition Competition is made possible by funding from Music Alive. Major funding for Music Alive comes from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, with additional support from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, The Amphion Foundation, The ASCAP Foundation Bart Howard Fund, the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts, and the National Endowment for the Arts.