Secondary school students invited to enter MusicFirst 2021 Young Composers Competition

UK school students between 11 and 18 years of age are encouraged to enter original works to a composition competition organised by the online music education management company, MusicFirst.

The pieces must be under three minutes in length and must be completely original and written by one individual for either solo or ensemble traditional western instruments. Three age categories will be judged.

Finalists will be invited to a live workshop with the renowned British composer Judith Weir (above) in November, which will be broadcast online via MusicFirst’s stream for teachers and students to view. The finalists will have their works discussed by Weir, who will announce the winners in each category.

Winners will receive an engraved and bound score of their composition and a written critique of their work, as well as recognition by Judith Weir at her live-streamed workshop.

Judith Weir’s compositions have been performed, recorded and broadcast worldwide. She was the Resident Composer in Association for the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in the 1990s, working with conductor Simon Rattle and she has been commissioned to compose works for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra and the London Sinfonietta among others. 

How to enter

Submissions are being accepted from the beginning of September 2021 until the end of October. They must be submitted by teachers for their students, in the form of a live or midi-generated audio recording and a pdf manuscript of the full score in either traditional western notation or a modern graphical score layout.

Entries will judged by a panel on compositional technique, musicality and originality.

Two submissions will be chosen as finalists and will be notified on 11 November, with the masterclass taking place a week later.

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