KMTA 2024 Commissioned Composer – Call for Submissions

Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) is dedicated to encouraging the creation of new works by American composers and annually assists its affiliated state associations with the generation and performance of new music through the national Composer Commissioning program. Each year, the Kentucky Music Teachers Association (KMTA) board selects one composer from the region to write a commissioned work for performance at their annual state conference.

Following the premier performance, the Kentucky commissioned work will be submitted to a panel of recognized composers who will select the MTNA-Shepherd Distinguished Composer of the Year from among all state commissioned works produced throughout the country that year. The winning work is presented in a concert performance at the next MTNA National Conference, and the composer is proclaimed the MTNA-Shepherd Distinguished Composer of the Year.

Composers living/working in Kentucky or adjoining states are invited to apply. Preference will be given to Kentucky-affiliated composers. It is not necessary to be a member of KMTA to apply, but non-KMTA composer will have to agree to join KMTA if selected for the commission.

Application Deadline: December 8, 2023

Materials needed for Application

  • Recordings and scores of three representative works.
    • Recordings should be in mp3 format and
    • Scores should be in PDF format.
    • Please remove your name or any other identifying information from your scores and recordings. Download links to large audio files are acceptable.
    • Please note that pedagogical works will not be considered – this is a competition focused on the creation of new and original music.
  • In a separate PDF or Word document, please submit a short bio and a summary of your background and experience in composition (this information will not be shared with the adjudicators).
  • A one-page proposal/description of the type of work you would compose to fulfill the commission.

Commissioned Composition Premier

The selected composer will be responsible for securing performer(s) for the premiere at the state conference in Fall 2024 at Western Kentucky.

Should your piece be chosen as the national winner among all 2024 MTNA commissioned works, you would also be obligated to present a performance at the national convention. There is a minimum duration of 7-8 minutes; recent commissioned works have averaged from 10-15 minutes. The commission currently stands at $1500. Commissioned composers from the last four years (2020-23) will need to wait before reapplying.

Email your submission materials to: