Young Composers Award 2018 open for applications

ncem young composers

Calling all budding young composers – the National Centre for Early Music (NCEM) has opened its call for applicants to the Young Composers Award 2018.

The initiative is open to young composers resident in the UK, who are invited to score a new piece for two cornetts and three sackbuts, with optional chamber organ.

NCEM is encouraging interested creators to treat the instruments like voices, rather than a modern brass ensemble, and to imbue their piece with the spirit of Venice.

Applicants will be separated into two age groups – 18 years and under, and 19 to 25 years.

Shortlisted composers will be invited to York for a workshop led by composer Christopher Fox, with their pieces presented by the English Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble.

The winning works are to be premiered in a performance by the ensemble at Turner Sims, Southampton, on 30 October 2018, which will recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio 3’s Early Music Show.

The scheme is open for registration until 11.59pm on 16 February 2018. Applicants should email the NCEM at

Completed scores must be received no later than 5pm on Friday 16 March 2018.

Terms and conditions, and details of how to take part, are available at

Alan Davey, controller of BBC Radio 3 said: ‘Talent development is at the heart of BBC Radio 3 and we are proud to continue our commitment to supporting the next generation of composers inspired by early music.

‘Over the past 70 years the station has looked to provide a national platform for the stars of tomorrow whilst connecting audiences with a diverse range of exceptional new music. I’m thrilled that, through partnerships such as this with the NCEM, we can continue to amplify the creative voices of young composers by giving them their first ever broadcast.’