EarShot is a program of the American Composers Orchestra, in partnership with the League of American Orchestras, American Composers Forum, and New Music USA. Over the past 10 years the program has initiated dozens of composer/orchestra/conductor relationships across the country offering opportunities to more than 100 composers. In 2016, ACO launched a composer archive of past EarShot compositions as a resource to the field. Orchestras across the country and around the world rely on EarShot to identify and connect with creative artists, as well as to advise on commissions, competitions, and program design.
The American Composers Orchestra, as well as ACO’s partner orchestras, offer selected participants the opportunity to collaborate with mentors consisting of both established orchestral composers and industry leaders through the EarShot Readings program. ACO and its partner orchestras aim to align these readings with their existing programmatic, community engagement, and DEI goals and initiatives; specific eligibility parameters (outside of the requirement of being a composer with fewer than 3 professional performances) are created by the host orchestras in collaboration with ACO.
There is no application fee for EarShot Readings. Additionally, travel (up to $700) and local accommodations are provided for the selected composers. Those selected also receive recordings of their works for personal and/or professional use.
Before submitting an application, carefully review the eligibility and submission guidelines. A complete submission must include the following:
There are no upcoming deadlines at this time.
Scores are reviewed by a panel of composers representing various backgrounds, demographics, and musical styles. Panelists rate the scores numerically on criteria including originality, technical proficiency, and orchestration. Selected scores will advance to a second round of panelists comprised of ACO artistic staff, who will in turn select a group of finalists. From these finalists, participants for each opportunity will be selected by the artistic staff of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Naples Philharmonic, respectively.
Review panelists from the past four years include Shawn Okpebholo, Michi Wiancko, Kathryn Alexander, David Biedenbender, Lisa Bielawa, Chen Yi, Anthony Cheung, Rob Deemer, Man Fang, Gabriela Lena Frank, Jimmy Lopez, Eric Nathan, Clint Needham, Gabriela Ortiz, Elizabeth Ogonek, Kate Soper, Ken Ueno, Dan Visconti, Wang Jie, Wang Lu, Xi Wang, Trevor Weston, and Lidiya Yankovskaya.
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