2nd Annual Young Composers Contest

2nd Annual Young Composers Contest

In our annual celebration of Make Music Day, MakeMusic is again hosting a composition contest for young composers, aged 13-21. The winner will receive cash and other prizes. In addition, their composition will be performed live in select cities as part of national Make Music Day celebrations.

Contest Entry Details

Entries can be created in any notation software. Musicians without notation software are encouraged to download a free 30 day trial of Finale and start creating. Contestants must submit both PDF and MusicXML files of their composition. All licensing rights to pieces submitted will remain with each composer.

Eligible compositions must use (and are limited to) the following instrumentation and should be written at a level of difficulty that could be performed by a typical middle school band (this instrumentation is available as a Finale template on the contest website):

Flute (1 or 2 parts) Oboe Bassoon
Bb Clarinet (1 or 2 parts) Bass Clarinet Alto Saxophone (1 or 2 parts)
Tenor Saxophone Baritone Saxophone Bb Trumpet (1 or 2 parts)
Horn Trombone (1 or 2 parts) Baritone B.C.
Tuba Percussion*


* Percussion can be any combination of snare, bass drum, timpani (no more than 3), triangle, wood block, tambourine, bells, xylophone, and/or misc. auxiliary percussion).

All submissions are due by 11:59 pm Mountain Time on Sunday, April 15, 2018. The winner will be announced May 15.



Contest Prizes

The winning young composer will receive:

  • $250 one-time cash prize
  • Finale v25
  • Garritan Marching & Concert Band sound library
  • One-year SmartMusic Student subscription
  • One-year student membership to American Composers Forum

If you are over 21, this is a great opportunity for you to be a mentor. Please share the contest with students and young friends. You’ll find complete details and rules on the contest website.

Thanks to our co-sponsors, the American Composers Forum and the Make Music Alliance.

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