Following last year's international success our Composition Competition is back in its 3rd year!
Inspired by the example of Zuzana Ruzickova, one of the leading harpsichordists of the 20th century, we continue to champion new music for period instruments.
We're honoured to name our competition in her memory and would like to encourage you to read more about Zuzana here.
This year we are looking for a chamber music composition for baroque violin, baroque flute, viola da gamba and harpsichord of between 4-6 minutes duration (please see full competition rules below).
Composers have taken inspiration from all manner of sources, be it nature, seasonal changes, or mythology. For this competition, however, we ask that you explore Telemann's 'Paris Quartets' and celebrate the art of conversation between instruments. We encourage you to make a good use of the unique sonorities which period instruments offer.
3 winning compositions will be selected by the jury and announced on 1st August 2022.
Viktor Kalabis Prize - 2 successful works will be recorded in video performances by director Simon Helbling and his crew in October 2022. This aligns with our continuing focus to present music in engaging ways outside of the traditional concert hall.
Prima la musica Prize - all 3 winning compositions will be published by one of the UK's foremost early music publishers Prima la musica!
Winning compositions will be promoted throughout 2022/2023 by Ada Witczyk* across all social media platforms.
Baroque instruments are capable of unlimited nuance. Their tone, colour, depth of sound and expressive possibilities are entirely different from their modern counterparts.
While there is a wealth of fantastic repertoire, why should such expressive instruments be limited to bring only 'ancient' music to life? Period instruments offers an as yet untapped opportunity for contemporary composition and this competition seeks to change that!
What’s different this year?
This year we’ve teamed up with Florilegium and are very much looking forward to taking our competition to the next level. You can find out more about them here.
Jury members that will pick 3 winning compositions:
Ada Witczyk - please see about to find out more
Simon Standage is well known as a violinist specialising in 17th and 18th-century music. Leader and soloist with The English Concert from its foundation until 1990, he also fulfilled the same role for many years with the City of London Sinfonia. As well as the many records he made with The English Concert (including Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, nominated for a Grammy award), he also recorded solo and chamber music, including all of Mozart's violin concertos with the Academy of Ancient Music, of which he was, with Christopher Hogwood, Associate Director from 1991 to 1995.
Since his founding, with Richard Hickox, of Collegium Musicum 90, he has made numerous recordings for Chandos Records. As soloist and director of chamber orchestras and chamber musician, he is active both in Britain and abroad. He is leader of the Salomon String Quartet (founded by him in 1981), which specialises in historical performance of the Classical repertoire. He is Professor of Baroque Violin at the Royal Academy of Music in London and the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest and teaches at summer courses in Europe.
He received a medal for services to Polish culture in 2008, was awarded Honorary Membership of the Royal Academy of Music in 2009, and in 2010 received the Georg Philipp Telemann Prize from the city of Magdeburg.
Ashley Solomon is Head of Historical Performance at the Royal College of Music, having been appointed a recorder professor in 1994. In 2014 he was awarded a Personal Chair and in July 2017 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music (FRAM). In 2019 he was also elected a Fellow of the Royal College of Music (FRCM) which was conferred on him by HRH Prince of Wales. Both Fellowships are in recognition of outstanding services to music.
He has given masterclasses and lectures worldwide, including The Juilliard School, Yale University, Case Western Reserve University, Sydney Conservatorium, Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Singapore, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Oslo and Bergen Conservatories, Frankfurt Hochschule and Mozarteum in Salzburg.
Active as a soloist and chamber musician he is the director of Florilegium, and much of Ashley’s time is spent working and performing with this ensemble that he co-founded in 1991. Since 2001 he has been its director. Florilegium have been recording with Channel Classics since 1993 and have to date made 35 recordings, many of which have garnered international awards.
Nicholas Hardisty is a London-based musician who leads a complicated career in all sorts of musical pursuits. Having written his postgraduate thesis on the music of Max Bruch, working in musical outreach and giving pre-concert talks with renowned international artists, he now divides his time running music festivals in the Lake District and as much playing and conducting as possible.
1. Submit a 4-6 minute long composition for baroque violin, baroque flute, viola da gamba and harpsichord
2. The work should be performable at A=415Hz
3. Scores and individual parts should be submitted in standard western notation and should not make use of graphical notation. Parts and scores must be legible. As the compositions will be judged anonymously, composer names and signatures must be kept off the score. Details about the composer’s identity (name, date of birth, email, short biography) should be included in a separate WORD document attached to the submission email.
4. Compositions should be submitted as PDF files preferably with sound files produced by your notation software
5. The work should be performable live with only the instruments specified above
6. Submitted pieces must be original works which have not been submitted to other competitions or have previously been recorded or performed
7. Only one entry per Entrant will be accepted.
8. Entrants must warrant that their entries are original, entirely their own work and do not infringe copyright or other third party rights. The RCC reserves the right to contact Entrants to verify this.
9. There is NO registration fee
10. There is NO age limit and the competition is open to all nationalities
11. Scores to be sent to email@example.com
12. Deadline for submitting entries: 31st May 2022 (midnight BST)
13. Announcement of winners selected by the Jury: 1st August 2021 on Instagram profile @adawitczyk
How to enter?
1. Register your interest here by entering your details below
2. Submit a score and individual parts by sending it to firstname.lastname@example.org before the deadline
Over the submission period we will try and share helpful information regarding period instruments, bows, differences between them and their modern counterparts as well as answer any questions you may have. We recommend following Ada's instagram account as this will be our main communication channel.
Competitions don't just grow on trees
Recording space, musicians, film crews and equipment are all expensive and we are hugely grateful to everyone who has helped support our work last year.
With your help we can create something really special ONCE AGAIN!
* Copyright in the work(s) will remain with the composer(s) but Ada Witczyk will have a perpetual licence to use the work(s) herself for any purpose.