Hugh Davidson Composer Readings

Dedicated to the late Hugh Davidson, a strong supporter of new music, this program provides the opportunity for composers writing new music for orchestra to have their pieces rehearsed by the VS and receive feedback.

Score Submission Deadline: 5 pm, Wednesday February 1, 2023

Score Readings: Saturday April 15, 2023, 10:00 am – 12:30 pm & 2 – 4:30 pm
Conducted by Associate Conductor Giuseppe Pietraroia
Facilitated by Rodney Sharman, Composer-Mentor in Residence

Venue: Fellowship Hall, First Metropolitan United Church (932 Balmoral Rd)

Each season, the VS puts out a call for composers to submit new work to the symphony. Dedicated to the late Hugh Davidson, a strong supporter of new music, this program provides the opportunity for composers writing music for orchestra to have their pieces rehearsed by the VS, receive feedback, and an archival recording of their work.

The late Hugh Davidson - Victoria Symphony supporter and friend

Eligibility and Guidelines

Applicants must be a resident of British Columbia, Canada. Applicants who are from British Columbia but currently study outside of the province are eligible to apply. If such an applicant is successful, the cost of travel and accommodation is at their own expense. There are no age restrictions.

Each composer may submit only one composition for consideration. Works that have been professionally performed are not eligible. Works previously submitted to the VS for consideration may be resubmitted. Compositions must be less than fifteen minutes in length. A portion or movement from a longer work may also be considered.

Works must be scored for a maximum instrumentation of:

  • Woodwinds: 2 flutes (2nd doubling piccolo), 2 oboes (2nd doubling English horn), 2 clarinets (2nd doubling bass clarinet), 2 bassoons (no doubling)
  • Brass:  4 French horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones (2 tenor, 1 bass), 1 tuba
  • Percussion: Timpani (1 player) + 1 percussion player
  • Harp: 1 player
  • Strings: violin I, violin II, viola, cello, double bass
  • String count: 6, 5, 4, 4, 2

Additional players can be provided at the expense of the composer. Piano costs may include rental and tuning fees. Works with soloists will be considered. The soloist will be provided by the composer without costs to the Victoria Symphony. Indigenous composers are welcome to include vocal and instrumental soloists from their traditions. Costs for Indigenous performing artists may be covered by the Victoria Symphony on a case-by-case basis.

Works employing electronics, MIDI and digital technology will be considered. The orchestra, however, may not be amplified. Any and all electronics must be provided by the composer without cost to the Victoria Symphony.

All successful composers must be prepared to provide professional, legible orchestral parts and conductor score prepared according to the MOLA (Major Orchestra Librarians Association) guidelines (PDF attached). Parts and scores must be in booklet format at a size of either 9×12 or 10×13 inches. Additional information can be provided for printing services. Please do not include bow markings in the score or parts except those already indicated as part of the composition.


Application Evaluation

The quality of the score submitted is the primary evaluation criteria. It is therefore in the applicant’s best interest that the score be clear, accurate, and the best representation of the composer’s work. Incomplete, illegible, or late applications will not be considered.

Successful applicants will be contacted within 2 weeks of the submission deadline.

Final scores and orchestra parts from successful applicants are due at 5:00 pm, Wednesday March 15, 2023.

Applications should be submitted by email later than 5:00pm on Wednesday February 1, 2023:

Contact Rebecca Marchand, with any questions.