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12 Jan 2021

Call for Scores: 2021 Commission Competition for Solo Organ (Syracuse University)

Deadline: 15 Mar 2021 (M)
Results: 15 May 2021 (Sa)

Hendricks Chapel at Syracuse University (Syracuse, NY, USA) will host a first-ever commission competition for a new work for solo organ in Mar 2021. This competition is an outgrowth of the Composing for the Organ project created by Anne LAVER and Natalie DRAPER, faculty members in the Setnor School of Music.


  • USD1500 for a new solo organ work
  • World premiere performance on the Music and Message series in Hendricks Chapel in the Fall of 2021. This performance will be recorded.
  • Invitation to introduce the work at world premiere; travel expenses to attend world premiere will be covered by Hendricks Chapel.


  • Composers will submit an unpublished, completed work for solo organ. The piece should be between five and ten minutes in duration.


  • All application materials must be received on or before 15 Mar 2021 (M).
  • The competition winner will be announced no later than 15 May 2021 (Sa).


  • Composers of all ages and nationalities are encouraged to enter. Preference will be given to emerging composers.


  • Complete the application form at the organisers’ website (link below).
  • Submit the following materials in one email to Natalie Draper at ndraper[at]syr[dot]edu:
    • A final version of the score as a PDF file.
    • If available, a Midi or other recording, submitted either as a link to an online recording or as a link to a Dropbox/Google Drive file.
    • A short statement of why this piece is a good fit for the Music and Message series at Hendricks Chapel. Visit the Music and Message webpage to learn more about the program.


  • The selected work must be playable on the 1952 Holtkamp Organ at Hendricks Chapel. Visit the Holtkamp Organ webpage to view specifications of the organ.
  • The selected work should be appropriate for a performance on the Music and Message series at Hendricks Chapel, a non-denominational chapel at the heart of the Syracuse University campus. Music and Message is a weekly series that features musical performances and spoken reflection from a diversity of religious and spiritual perspectives. These gatherings seek to invite all learners into the fullness of life. Past program themes have been “Gratitude for the Blessings of the Earth,” “Beauty/Brokenness,” “Identity and Spirituality,” “Silence, Darkness, and Mysticism,” and “Body, Mind, and Spirit: Music for Dancing,” to name a few. Visit the Music and Message webpage or the Hendricks Chapel Facebook page to learn more about the series and watch past Music and Message programs.
  • A panel of judges from the Syracuse faculty will select a work of the highest quality that will be a strong match with the Music and Message series and will have the potential to be a lasting contribution to the repertoire.
  • Composers (especially those unfamiliar with the organ) are invited to consult materials related to writing for the organ prepared by Anne Laver and Natalie Draper. Visit the Composing for the Organ website and YouTube channel for more information.
  • There are no fees associated with this application process.

For more information, please contact Assistant Professor of Composition and Theory, Dr. Natalie DRAPER (ndraper[at]syr[dot]edu).