Mary Bussman Emerging Female Composer Contest

The Twin Cities Women’s Choir is pleased to announce a choral competition for an emerging female composer in continuation of our mission to affirm the voices of women. Emerging female composers are eligible and encouraged to submit their works for consideration. “Emerging” is defined as someone who is not well known as a choral composer on the national level. The composition should be suitable for our annual Illuminations Concerts, which reflect upon darkness and the return of light to our lives—literally and metaphorically. 

Online submission deadline:  July 15th, 2018

$1000; live premiere with 3 performances of the work in November and December, 2018, in Minneapolis, MN; archival recording; and may be featured on a TCWC recording.

Submission Criteria

  • Applicants must be an emerging (someone who is not well known on the national level) female composer
  • All submissions must be an original composition for SSAA choir, a cappella or with piano accompaniment. Occasional division of the SSAA parts is acceptable.
  • If text is not original, proof of public domain or author’s/publisher’s written permission for use of text is required.
  • Text may be secular or one that could be welcomed in many faith traditions. Should be suitable for our annual Illuminations Concerts.
  • Performance time of the work should be approximately 3 minutes in length.
  • All submissions must not have been commissioned or previously performed.
  • Online submission of the score and application packet is required. If your score is handwritten and scanned in, it must be clearly legible. Illegible copies will not be considered.
  • Email files to:
  • Scores submitted without a complete application packet will not be considered.
  • The deadline for electronic entry is July 15, 2018.
  • The winner will be announced no later than August 1, 2018.
  • The TCWC reserves the right to not award a prize.
  • The decision of the judges is final.
  • Contact Janice Hunton at with any questions.

Application Packet Requirements

  • Composer’s name, phone number and mailing address
  • Composer’s email address (all communications, including the announcement of a winner, will be via email)
  • One legible copy of the score
  • Proof of permission to use the text, if not original text or proof in the public domain.
  • Biography of composer

Application Packet Optional Inclusions

  • Optional, but encouraged:
    • List of composer’s previous choral works and performances
    • Digital recording of the composition, i.e. midi, piano performance of score, etc. A recording is strongly encouraged as the judges appreciate hearing the composer’s interpretation of the composition.