Commission New Music
Following are some questions and answers, along with some guidelines to help you decide whether commissioning a new work is for you. If you have any questions regarding the process that are not outlined below, please do not hesitate to contact me. Commissioning a new is a colloaborative process between the commissioning party (you) and the composer (me), and it need not be a scary process. It's fun and highly rewarding to have a new work written for you.
Why commission a new work?
• To celebrate a historic event, a milestone anniversary, an inauguration, or a building dedication
• To honor a retiring conductor, mentor, community leader, or friend
• To have an original composition written especially for you or your ensemble/organization
• To make your special event unforgettable with the excitement of a world premiere
• To create the opportunity for your musicians to work with a living composer
• To create new repertoire for a particular instrument or genre
• To enrich the world of concert music with a new work that will always carry your name as the commissioning party
How does the commissioning process begin?
Commissioning a new work begins with you and I discussing your ideas >>
I will need to know:
• the purpose or occasion
• your ideas concerning theme, style, or possible narrative text
• the performing forces (soloist, trio, chorus, full orchestra, symphonic band?)
• the musical abilities of the performers (professionals, students, amateurs?)
• the approximate duration desired
• the spacial/antiphonal possibilities of the space in which the work will be premiere
• Will you want me present at the final rehearsals to work with your musicians and/or at the premiere for audience "meet
the composer" activities such as pre-concert talks or audience Q&A?
How much does it cost to commission a new work?
The commissioning fee depends primarily on:
• the duration of the proposed work
• the number of performers involved
• the deadline
• Click this link for a guideline to suggested commissioning amounts >>
How can a commission be funded?
• An ensemble or organization's budget may well have sufficient funds.
• Patrons may be found who would happily support a commission.
• Businesses may support the commission as a form of public relations and community enrichment. The business would be
recoginzed in the printed program and its representatives appear on stage at the premiere.
• Consortiums may be formed with similar ensembles in other towns or states. Several ensembles agree to share the
commission fee, and each gives a premiere in their own home town (perhaps even simultaneous premieres on the same
• There are a number of private foundations that will support commissions that are in alignment with the foundation's
• There are a number of "crowd funding" programs that may be used to help raise the funds, and many are tax deductable.
For more information, follow this link >>
How can we get started?
• Send an email to and let's begin discussing your ideas.
• Further information and resources about commissioning a new work can be found on the American Composers
Forum website by clicking >> .