Composition Competition

Announcing the 2021 Orchestral Composition Competition:

Come Together
Featuring the Sonoma State University Symphony Orchestra Alexander Kahn, Director


‣  The competition is open to Sonoma State University students only. 

‣  Only unperformed, unpublished, and un-awarded compositions will be considered. 



‣  Entries must be submitted no later than June 28, 2021 at 5pm. 

‣  The winning composition will be announced no later than July 15, 2021. 

‣  Finished scores and parts of the winning composition must be submitted no later than August 15, 2021. Students may be requested to make revisions between July 15 and this due date.

‣  Composers of the winning composition should be prepared to attend all rehearsals of their composition, the schedule of which will be announced by the orchestra director. 

‣  The winning composition will open the SSU Symphony Orchestra concert on Sunday, September 26 2021, at 2:00 p.m. in Weill Hall. 



‣  Compositions to be considered should be scored for a chamber orchestra (2222 or 1111 – 2200 or 1100 – 1 perc – str) and must not exceed 10 minutes in length. Compositions not meeting these scoring criteria will not be considered.

‣  The piece will be premiered on our opening concert of the 2021 season entitled Come Together. The piece should reflect the composer’s emotional response to the resumption of in-person concerts by SSU after an historic one-and-one-half year interruption by the Covid pandemic. Composers are encouraged to dramatize the resumption of concert life as they see fit (having musicians enter the stage one at a time, etc.). The piece must be accompanied by a program note.

‣  The piece should be of minimal difficulty, requiring little rehearsal time for a young university orchestra.

‣  The score and parts must be complete, legible, and professional quality, adhering to the Major Orchestra Librarians’ Association music preparation guidelines



‣  Anonymous copies of the score should be submitted via email. The composer’s name or any reference to the composer must NOT appear on the scores. Non-anonymous entries will be disqualified. 
Midi files are welcome but not required.

‣  Composers should also include a separate sheet with their name, contact information, a brief biography, and program notes for their composition. 

‣  All materials should be sent to: Thom Limbert, Ph.D. (



Cameron Kaiser, Moritura Terra (2017)

AJ Gonzales, La osa y la amopola (2019)

Thomas Gosnell, home (2020)

Michael Garrett, A Walk Home (2020)