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BNMI’s Calls for Scores

Each year, Boston New Music Initiative holds numerous Calls for Scores throughout the calendar year. These calls not only engage our composer members, they provide our core ensemble and guest artists with the repertoire we perform throughout our season, both on our regularly scheduled concerts and our festival appearances.

As the Artistic Director of BNMI, I would like to give you all a sneak peak into how we organize the calls and what is coming down the road this season.

The Calls

On a quarterly basis, we will announce four separate Calls for Scores. Each Call is open for approximately 6 weeks. Each Call will have listed in its rules our timeline for reviewing the pieces and notifying composers of the results. Winning pieces most often will be programmed on the following season.

The two Calls that result in the majority of our repertoire are those for our Core Ensemble and our Core+ Call. In addition, we hold an annual Commissioning Competition and a Young Composers Competition. In addition to these four regular Calls, special supplemental Calls are occasionally announced for special projects and festival performances.

Who Can Submit?

Any Associate or Full Member of BNMI can submit an unlimited number of scores for any call. Associate Members can submit a score by paying a $15 submission fee, and Full Members are entitled to submit one score per year free, with additional submissions subject to a $5 fee (for any composer thinking of submitting more than one score a year, Full Membership pays for itself, and also comes with additional benefits as well).

What can be submitted?

Any piece that fits the submission criteria will be given full consideration. In almost all instances, Calls are anonymous, and occasionally for some Calls, instrumentation or duration restrictions may apply. Carefully read each Call’s regulations before submitting.

Why submit my music?

BNMI is committed to high quality, high-visibility performances of the best of new music. Now finishing its twelfth season, BNMI has already produced 25 concerts, performing over 175 works by 120 different composers, and we’re not slowing down!

When do Calls happen?

During Season 12 (yielding repertoire for Season 13), our schedule of Calls will be as follows:
  1. 9th Annual Commissioning Competition September 15 - November 20, 2020
  2. Call for Scores "Literary Elements"  January 24 - March 26, 2021
  3. 7th Annual Young Composer Competition March 15 - April 15, 2021
  4. Call for Scores "The Music of Speech" April 4 - June 4, 2021

    Scores selected will be performed on the following season.

    How are pieces judged?

    For most Calls, the anonymous works are codified into a spreadsheet containing scores and recordings (if available). A contingent of BNMI staff and core musicians privately cast an up-or-down vote for each piece. Those votes are then tallied and those scores with the highest positive totals are entered into a second round of review, where the BNMI artistic team and performers select the final repertoire for the season.

    For the Commissioning Competition, a two-step process including an independent panel of judges is employed. A detailed description of the complete process will appear in that Call’s regulations.

    Where can I learn more?

    BNMI’s website has many helpful pages with information about Calls For Scores, Membership, and more. Check out these pages for more info.

    Calls For Scores: Is One Open Now?  

    Read more about membership here.

    Click here to see a listing of all our past seasons’ repertoire.

©#### The Boston New Music Initiative, Inc.
P.O. Box 400420 Cambridge, MA 02140