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Chamber Music America: Classical Commissioning Program

Deadline: April 29, 2018

Chamber Music America’s (CMA’s) Classical Commissioning Program provides grants for the commissioning and performance of new works by American composers to professional U.S.-based presenters and ensembles whose programming includes Western European and/or non-Western classical and contemporary music. The program supports works scored for 2–10 musicians performing one per part, composed in any of the musical styles associated with contemporary classical music, and in the form of a notated score (the composer retains all rights). The new composition must be performed a minimum of three times in public in the U.S. or its territories by June 30, 2021.

A primary focus for the future is for people of all races, religions, genders, and abilities are able to fully participate in the performance, presentation, and enjoyment of the many styles of small ensemble music. CMA has adopted the acronym ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, and Native American) for use in its equity focus. Women and ALAANA composers have historically been under-represented in the Classical Commissioning program. Given its commitment to equitable grant making, CMA’s goal is to award a majority of the grants to ensembles and presenters who apply with women or ALAANA composers.

Amount: Grants range from $5,000-$20,000, depending on the length of the musical piece and the size of the ensemble. Additionally, each ensemble member receives a $1,000 honorarium for rehearsing the new piece, and grantees receive up to $1,000 to support copying costs.

Eligibility: Presenters and ensembles that are based in the U.S. or its territories and that are CMA organization-level members. Specifically:

An ensemble is eligible if it:

  • Is a professional group with a commitment to Western European or non-Western contemporary classical music (as demonstrated on a submitted work sample)
  • Consists of “fixed” personnel and instrumentation or is part of a flexible roster or a collective that performs in varying configurations of no more than 10
  • In the case of a duo, performs as equal partners, rather than as soloist and accompanist, and consistently publicizes itself as a duo
  • Has 501(c)(3) status, or the leader/primary member of the ensemble is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident

A presenter is eligible if it:

  • Is a 501(c)(3) organization or otherwise eligible for charitable contributions for federal income, estate and gift-tax purposes
  • Presents classical, contemporary, other music genres, and/or multi-disciplinary performing arts programs

Additionally, the composer:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • May not have outstanding commitments to this commissioning program, or to CMA’s New Jazz Works
  • May be a member of the applicant’s ensemble
  • Is an individual, not a group
  • May not appear as a composer on more than one application to a CMA commissioning program—including New Jazz Works—for the period beginning July 1, 2018

Note: Ensembles may apply to either CMA’s 2018 Classical Commissioning or New Jazz Works program, but not both. Similarly, a composer may appear on only one application in either program. A presenter may submit only one application and apply with only one ensemble.

Link: http://www.chamber-music.org/programs/classical/grants

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