Underwood New Music Readings – 25th Anniversary!

We proudly announce the 25th edition of ACO’s annual roundup of the country’s brightest young and emerging composers.

Sessions will take place under the baton of Music Director George Manahan with a recorded reading open to the public on June 14, 2016. Up to seven emerging composers will be selected to participate from a national candidate pool. The selected participants will have their pieces read by ACO in two reading sessions. Composers will receive artistic and career guidance from the Symphony artistic staff, orchestra musicians, and renowned mentor-composers Derek Bermel, Sarah Kirkland Snider and Stephen Hartke.

A recorded reading will be open to the public on June 14, 2016 at Miller Theatre, Columbia University beginning at 7:30pm. Tickets are free but please reserve seats through the link on the left of this text.

The Underwood Readings are the core of ACO’s ongoing professional training programs for emerging American composers. At the Readings, composers will meet with ACO artistic staff, orchestra members — including the conductor and mentor composers. Members of ACO’s composer advisory panel and guest composers participate in preliminary reviews of scores, provide critical commentary and feedback, post-Reading evaluations and selection of the composer to receive the commission award.

The Readings include two sessions with the orchestra, a working-rehearsal and a run-through performance. The performances are professionally recorded, and each composer is given a high-quality audio recording to be used for archival, study and portfolio purposes. Composers also participate in a series of professional development workshops covering such topics as promotion, score preparation and publishing, copyright and commissioning agreements, and other career essentials. Transportation and meals are provided for all participants.

A Career Development Seminar will be offered to composers, students, or anyone interested in learning more about the business of being a composer on Tuesday, June 14th from 10am-4pm at Columbia University. These invaluable talks, led by leaders in the industry, provide information ranging from copyright and commission agreements, to music preparation, to promotion, and fundraising.

The workshops are a practical guide for any composer wishing to gain a better understanding of these critical aspects to success as a composer today. Previously only available to participants in the Readings, ACO has made a limited number of spaces available to aspiring composers from the community for a small registration fee.

Topics to include:

Copyright and Commissioning Basics
James Kendrick Esq., Alter & Kendrick LLP

Engraving and Self-Publishing
Bill Holab, Bill Holab Music Publishing

Support Structures for Composers
Scott Winship, New Music USA

Career Inspiration for Composers:  How To Share Your Best Self Through Branding 
Astrid Baumgardner, President, Astrid Baumgardener Coaching + Training

Publicity and Promotion
Christina Jensen, Principal, Christina Jensen PR

Panel Discussion:  The Real Path to Programming
Frank J. Oteri, Composer Advocate, New Music USA
Christina Jensen, Principal, Christina Jensen PR
(additional panel participants to be determined)

Registration fee $20 (lunch provided)

The Underwood New Music Readings are part of EarShot, the national orchestral composition discovery network. EarShot activities include new music readings and other composer development programs with orchestras around the country. EarShot is coordinated by ACO in collaboration with American Composers Forum, the League of American Orchestras, and New Music USA (formerly American Music Center and Meet The Composer).

Lead support for the Underwood New Music Readings comes from Mr. Paul Underwood, The Fromm Music Foundation and The Helen F. Whitaker Fund. ACO’s emerging composers programs are made possible with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts and with the support of Jerome Foundation and the Eleanor Naylor Dana Charitable Trust.

June 14, 2016
7:30 PM

2960 Broadway,
New York, NY 10027


June 14, 2016
10:00 AM – 4:00 PM

2960 Broadway, Dodge Hall
New York, NY 10027