Iowa Composers Forum

Annual Student Composers Competition (June 1, 2020)

Music educators, both private instructors and school teachers, are encouraged to submit works by 5-12 or undergraduate college students written for any combination of instruments and voices to the ICF Annual Student Composers Competition. Entrants should be willing to travel to the ICF Festival of New Music (location and date TBA) to hear their piece performed if selected for an award. The ICF will make every effort to have winning compositions performed at an ICF event, but we cannot guarantee performances of pieces requiring more than three instruments or voices. Entrants are strongly urged to compose for small ensembles.

Composers must be students of ICF members or reside in the state of Iowa to enter the competition. Students can enter a composition into one of three categories based on their grade equivalent:
Category 1: 5th-8th grade
Category 2: 9th-12th grade
Category 3: undergraduate college student

Cash awards: $100 and 1st prize certificate will be awarded to the top student winner in the 1st Category; $125 and a 1st prize certificate will be awarded to the top student winner in the 2nd category; $200 and a 1st prize certificate will be awarded to the top student winner in the 3rd category. Honorary certificates may also be awarded at the discretion of the judges. Winners in each category will receive a one-year, free membership in the Iowa Composers Forum, granting all the benefits of membership. The ICF reserves the right to declare no winners in a category if the judges determine there are no entries of sufficient quality.

To sponsor a student composer, please submit a full score of their work with all parts clearly shown and no more than 2 parts on a staff. Scores should follow standard ensemble layout practices, including proper instrumental order and transposition. Scores should be clearly labeled with the title of the composition and the grade level of the student at the time of submission. Include approximate timing, instrumentation, and date when the piece was written. All marks referring to the identity of the composer should be removed. Please limit submissions to one work per student.

In a separate attachment, please include the following: Composition Title; Teacher’s name, address, telephone number, email and school (if applicable); Student’s name, address, email, school, age, grade level at the time of submission, newspaper contact; a short biography and brief program notes. If available, please also submit a recording of a live or electronic performance (MIDI realization is acceptable).

Submissions should be submitted via email to no later than June 1, 2020.

For further information please contact Denise Knaack at

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This article was written on 11 Feb 2020, and is filled under Opportunities.