Kurt Rohde, winner of the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2012. His new string quartet "Treatises for an Unrecovered Past" was premiered by the Lydian String Quartet on April 6, 2013.

Kurt Rohde, winner of the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2012. His new string quartet "Treatises for an Unrecovered Past" was premiered by the Lydian String Quartet on April 6, 2013.

Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2017

Contest Regulations and Application / Login

Introduction

The Lydian String Quartet and Brandeis University are proud to announce the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2017 for the composition of an original work for string quartet.

Steven Snowden, winner of the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2015. His new string quartet "Bird Catching From Above" was premiered by the Lydian String Quartet on April 9, 2016.

Steven Snowden, winner of the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize 2015. His new string quartet "Bird Catching From Above" was premiered by the Lydian String Quartet on April 9, 2016.

The Lydian String Quartet, on the faculty of Brandeis University since 1980, has long championed the works of living composers. The goal of this commission prize, generously supported by a gift from anonymous donors, is to encourage creativity and enhance the string quartet literature at the highest level of composition.

The winning composer will receive a $15,000 commission to compose a large-scale string quartet (15-30 minutes in length). The work will be premiered by the Lydian String Quartet at Brandeis University in spring of 2018. 

Table of Contents


ANONYMITY

Please note that the competition is anonymous. No identifying words, marks, or voices breaking the anonymity are allowed on submission materials, including all scores and sound files. The presence of any self-identifying words, marks, or voices or other self-identifying information will disqualify the candidate.

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COMPETITION PRIZE

The winner will receive a commission prize of $15,000 (U.S. dollars) to write a new work for string quartet, to be premiered by the Lydian String Quartet in spring of 2018. Payment will be in U.S. funds only. Half of the prize will be delivered initially and half upon successful completion and delivery of the new work. Prize monies will be subject to applicable tax laws, and it is the responsibility of the winner to properly report the prize.

The winner is required to attend the premiere of the new work at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, to be scheduled in spring of 2018, as well as a pre-concert lecture, and/or composer workshop, tba. Travel and accommodation expenses for the winner are not covered by the LSQ Commission Prize or Brandeis University.

The concert performance of the new work will be recorded on CD. One copy of any such recording will be furnished to the composer.

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CANDIDATE ELIGIBILITY

The LSQ Commission Prize is held without restriction regarding musical style, nationality, age, gender, race or religion.

The following groups are not eligible to enter the competition:

  • Members of the LSQ Commission Prize jury
  • Members of the Lydian String Quartet
  • Current music composition faculty of Brandeis University
  • Current students enrolled at Brandeis University

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JUDGING

The applications will be judged by a panel including music composition faculty of Brandeis University and the members of the Lydian String Quartet. Members of the panel may not enter the competition.

The judges’ decision is final and may not be appealed. The judging panel reserves the right not to award the prize.

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PARAMETERS OF THE NEW WORK

The winning composer will be engaged to create a new work for the Lydian String Quartet. The Lydian String Quartet will be available to consult with the composer during the composition process and welcomes such collaboration. The new work must meet the following criteria:

  • The work must be written for string quartet.
  • The new work is expected to be a substantial addition to the string quartet literature and approximately 15-30 minutes in length.
  • Electronics may be included in the new work, but only in consultation with and with prior approval from the Lydian String Quartet. The Lydian String Quartet reserves the right to limit the use of electronics to those that could easily be included with a touring program.
  • The new work must be completed and delivered to the Lydian String Quartet no later than January 1, 2018.

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DEADLINE AND PROCESS FOR SUBMISSIONS

All materials and application fee must be submitted online on or before Friday, December 23, 2016.  Late applications and incomplete applications will be disqualified. Submissions sent without the required application fee will be disqualified. Physical media (printed scores, compact discs, bank checks, etc.) will not be accepted. Instructions for the online application and material uploading are posted below.

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TIMELINE FOR COMPLETION OF THE NEW WORK

  1. December 23, 2016: deadline for all submissions.
  2. Winter, 2017: The winner of the LSQ Commission Prize will be notified during the winter of 2017.
  3. Winter, 2017: The first payment of $7,500 will be sent to the winning composer. Payment will be made only after the composer has read and signed all copies of the contract between the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize and the winning composer.
  4. January 1, 2018: Deadline for completion and delivery of the new work to the Lydian String Quartet. A copy of the work (score and performance parts) must be sent to the Lydian String Quartet at Brandeis University by the January 1 deadline, at which time the composer will receive the second payment of $7,500 for the new work.
  5. Spring, 2018, date tba: The winning composer’s new work will be premiered in a concert at Slosberg Recital Hall at Brandeis University. The winner is required to attend the concert premiere of the new work.

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CREATING AN ONLINE APPLICATION ACCOUNT — where to register and log in

All applicants need to create an online account to start an application. When you are ready to create an account or want to return to it to log in, click on the button below:

Important: Your application information and uploaded files will be saved only when you click on the "Continue" button on each page throughout the application. You can leave and return to the application as needed by using the button above with the login and password you created, up until the deadline.

Please note that this application is hosted by Brandeis University's Slideroom, which may be reflected in some of the web page descriptions and confirmation emails you receive.

Multiple applications/accounts per candidate are not allowed, and if attempted will disqualify that candidate.

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ITEMS TO SUBMIT ONLINE — personal information (updated)

  1. A completed application form (online form)
  2. Resume of compositional activities (Word or PDF format, or paste into online form), or narrative biography that includes information about your compositional activities (Word or PDF format, or paste into online form).
  3. Non-refundable application fee of $30 (U.S. dollars using credit card or debit card number entered online)

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ITEMS TO SUBMIT ONLINE — scores and audio files

1. The scores of two complete works (PDF FILES ONLY)

  • Compositions may be for any ensemble; at least one must clearly demonstrate writing for string instruments.
  • Include date of composition on each score; at least one work must have been completed within the last five years.
  • Entries printed using music notation software are encouraged. Handwritten scores must be scanned to PDF. Illegible handwritten scores will be disqualified.
  • The competition is anonymous. Any and all references on the score to the composer’s name, city, place of employment, or any other identifying notation must be removed completely. Any marks breaking the anonymity of the submission will disqualify the entry.

2. MP3 or WAV audio files containing recordings of the two scores submitted (MP3 OR WAV FILES ONLY. Other audio file formats, video files, or online links to personal web sites or commercial web sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Soundcloud, etc. will not be accepted.)

  • Any and all references to the composer’s name, city, place of employment must be removed. Any voices in the sound file breaking the anonymity of the submission will disqualify the entry.
  • Any submitted recordings that were made by any combination of previous or current members of the Lydian String Quartet will disqualify the entry.

Submitted scores and audio files will be reviewed by judges from a folder identified only by an automatically generated code number to ensure anonymity. Judges will not have access to the applicant's personal information or any information that can identify the applicant.

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APPLICATION FEES TO BE PAID ONLINE

There is a non-refundable application fee of $30 (U.S. dollars using credit card or debit card number entered in online application).

Submissions sent without the required application fee will be disqualified.

Application fees are non-refundable and will not be returned to those disqualified for not meeting the contest regulations.

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PUBLIC DISCLOSURE

The Lydian String Quartet will publicly announce the name of the competition winner during the month of February, 2017, and by no later than February 28, 2017, but only after the composer has read and signed all copies of the contract between the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize and the winning composer.

The names of non-winners will not be made public.

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PRODUCTION EXPENSES

The LSQ Commission Prize and Brandeis University will not be responsible for the cost of a) preparation of the score or extraction of parts, b) preparation of recordings, c) composer travel and accommodations, or d) any other expenses associated with the premiere performance of the new work.

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ACCOMMODATIONS AND TRAVEL

The winner is required to attend the concert premiere of the new work at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, to be scheduled in spring of 2018, as well as a pre-concert lecture, and/or composer workshop, tba. Travel and accommodation expenses for the winner will not be covered by the LSQ Commission Prize.

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RIGHTS TO EACH PARTY

The following rights will be given to the Lydian String Quartet before disbursement of prize moneys:

  1. The Lydian String Quartet will have exclusive performance rights through December 31, 2018.
  2.  The Lydian String Quartet reserves the right to perform the work in perpetuity.
  3. The Lydian String Quartet will have exclusive recording rights through December 31, 2019, and rights of first refusal after that date.
  4. The Lydian String Quartet reserves the right to record the work in perpetuity.
  5. The following dedication must appear just above or below the title of the work in all manuscript and published editions: Commissioned by The Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize. Premiered by the Lydian String Quartet, [date], 2018 at Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts, USA. Generously funded by anonymous donors.
  6. The Lydian String Quartet will have the right to make copies of the new work.
  7. The winning composer will be asked to provide biographical information and a photograph for publicity purposes. The Lydian String Quartet will have the right to use the composer’s photo, name, and composition title in future communications without fees.

The following rights are retained by the winning composer:

  1. Copyright ownership
  2. Publication rights

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PERFORMANCE CLAUSE

If the composer fails to fulfill the terms of the competition, the composer agrees to return to the Lydian String Quartet Commission Prize all moneys provided under these prize regulations.

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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Click here to go to the FAQ page