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Brussels Jazz Orchestra / Marco Mertens

Brussels Jazz Orchestra

International Composition Contest

In January 2020, Brussels Jazz Orchestra will hold its eighth International Composition Contest. One of the most important international competitions for jazz composition, its focus is on premiering new pieces written specifically for big band instrumentation. Brussels Jazz Orchestra endeavours to encourage talented international composers and arrangers all over the world and offer them a stage with this competition. In addition, it aims to discover new, high-quality music for jazz orchestra that is relevant to today, and to forge ties for the future with composers from all over the world.

Composers can participate by sending in a work they have written themselves for the preselection. Four finalists will be chosen, who will be commissioned to write a final piece for Brussels Jazz Orchestra, which will be performed by the orchestra in front of an international jury at the Brussels Jazz Festival. The winner will receive a cash prize and a professional audio and video recording of BJO playing his or her piece.

Following the preselection round, the names of the four composers selected for the final will be announced on 15 October 2019. These four finalists are actually all winners, since each will receive a budget of €1000 to write a new piece for Brussels Jazz Orchestra in the next ten weeks. The score for this new piece must be submitted by 1 January 2020.

The finalists’ compositions will be played on 12 January 2020 by the Brussels Jazz Orchestra at the Brussels Jazz Festival in Flagey (Brussels), conducted by the finalists themselves. An international jury that consists of Pierre Bertrand (FR), Florian Ross (DE) and Vellu Halkosalmi (FI), will choose the winner of the BJO International Composition Contest 2020.

The winner will receive the BJO ICC Award – a cash prize of €2000, and a professional audio and video recording of the premiere of his or her composition, performed by Brussels Jazz Orchestra.


Brussels Jazz Festival 2020