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General Submissions:
Guidelines for submitting works for consideration

American Composers Orchestra is committed to discovering new repertoire and creating opportunities for today's American composers, particularly those in the emerging to middle stages of their careers. To further these goals, ACO maintains an ongoing open submission policy, allowing composers to submit their work for general concert and programming consideration throughout the year. ACO is committed to a timely and impartial review of all materials submitted. If you are considering submitting your work, please note the following:

  • General Submissions must be accompanied by a general submission form. The form insures that we have all pertinent information, and that we are able to contact you regarding your submission. ACO will acknowledge receipt of all submissions received in good order.

  • In addition to the completed submission form, each submission should include a score, a resume and a works list. A recording or MIDI realization (if available) may be included, though a sound recording is not required.

  • Submissions are reviewed on a rolling basis by a rotating panel of respected composers and conductors. Works submitted will be reviewed by two or more qualified adjudicators, including at least one person who is not a member of ACO's artistic staff.
  • Due to the large number of submissions, a limited number of performance opportunities, and the long lead-time in concert programming, composers should generally expect the review process to take from 12 to 18 months.

  • Much of ACO's current programming features our Orchestra Underground ensemble, a flexible small orchestra that embraces technology and multimedia. The core instrumentation for this group is: single woodwinds and single brass instruments (standard wind doublings included), timpani plus 2 percussion, keyboard, harp, and strings (6.5.4.3.2 players). Though composers may submit works for any size orchestra, works that adhere to the Orchestra Underground instrumentation have more potential program openings for which they could be considered.

  • Only one work may be submitted with each submission form. However, there is currently no limit on the number of submissions a composer may send to ACO.
  • Composers wishing to have their material returned must enclose a suitable postage-paid return envelope. ACO will not be responsible for lost or misdirected scores. Send copies, DO NOT SEND ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPTS!
  • There is no fee charged to the composer to submit a work for general consideration.

  • Composers who wish to be considered for ACO's Underwood New Music Readings, EarShot Readings, or other special initiatives, must follow the specific submission procedures for those programs. Submissions for general programming review will not be considered for those programs.

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