Commissioning a new work is a very exciting process. I write commissions for all kinds of events including but not limited to: celebrations, festivals, anniversaries, dedications of new performing arts facilities, and works in memory of a figure who has left a strong mark on the lives of others. Most individuals have a clear picture about the occasion, performance dates, length, and overall nature of the work. On every commissioning project, I require an initial meeting (in person or virtual) so I can help sort out the other necessary details.
Please view the additional information below about commissioning a piece of music from me. I look forward to collaborating with the commissioning parties!
Additional Commissioning Information
Commissioning rates vary as to the length of the work, instrumentation and voicing, timeline, and method of delivery (physical or digital delivery). I ask for 50% of the commission fee up front, and 50% on delivery.
Relative to text, I feel that the composer must have a strong attachment to the text in order to musically connect. As such, I prefer to choose my own texts. Finding the perfect text (for the occasion) can be quite an involved process for me, and can easily take as much time as it takes to write the work. I normally send the text to the commissioning party before I begin the musical rendering so they are involved and give their “blessing.” *Applicable to Vocal Music only
The commissioning party is entitled to dedicate the work or state the commissioning party on the first page of the score and parts, as well as in all programs and program notes.
RESIDENCY & ATTENDANCE AT THE PREMIERE PERFORMANCE
One of the benefits of a commission for all involved is to be a part of the creation of the new work. There are many moving parts to a commission, including the ensemble, director, audience base, and the composer. When all of these come together, it further heightens the experience and brings even more life to music. It also allows time for the ensemble to ask questions of the composer regarding the creation of a new work. This can also be a very attractive part of grant writing or sponsorship of a commission by an arts supporter. If you would like to include a residency with the ensemble and attendance at the premiere, I ask that the commissioning party cover the travel and lodging costs as well as a small stipend for the residency. This is can factor this into the commission fee and contract.
The composer retains all copyrights to the work. The commissioning party shall receive sole performing rights of the work for an allotted time without performance by another ensemble. Additionally, the commissioning party can make as many copies of the music as needed for present and future performances. The composer “owns” the work, and will determine to put it on the website and begin promoting sales and performances of the work after the premiere occurs.