Twice a year, the NEC Orchestras will read compositions by student composers. This is a wonderful opportunity for student composers and instrumentalists to work together and give feedback on the playing and writing of new music.

In the fall, the Performance Library gives a presentation to the composition class on the music requirements for these readings. Learning how to prepare your parts is an important part of your musical education. The quality of the music you write won't mean much if the quality of your parts does not match. The parts must be "user friendly" for your players in order to make a favorable impression. At the Performance Library presentation, you will receive tips and tools to make your parts stand out from the crowd.

Before the part submission deadline, all composers are welcome to make an appointment with the Performance Library for a "lesson" in part preparation. This is an excellent opportunity to use free NEC facilities and to insure that your parts meet the guidelines for submission.

For the complete guidelines, click here.

Below is a quick overview. These guidelines apply to orchestral works and wind ensemble works:

  • Each composition must include a full score and instrumentation list indicating the number of players required for each instrument (along with any doublings) and the duration of the work.
  • Wind, brass and percussion parts must be double sided, taped and ready to use with enough parts for all players. The key must be listed for clarinets, horns & trumpets and the parts should be arranged in score order.
  • Percussion parts must include a list of all instruments needed by the player at the beginning of the part. Parts should provide a notation key if the part is complex.
  • String parts (one of each) should be submitted single-sided and unbound. Parts should be bowed. The Performance Library will make string sets.

In addition, the following personnel guidelines should be followed:

  • The composer is required to provide a piano player (or players) should one (or more) be needed.
  • If your work is a concerto or has a substantial solo part, you must provide a soloist or make arrangements in advance with the player who is assigned that part.

Parts and scores should be turned in to the Performance Library by the deadline below.

Fall Semester 2009 Orchestral Part Deadline: Monday, November 23, 2009, 9:00 AM

Parts that do not follow these guidelines or that are submitted after the deadline will be read at the discretion of the Large Ensemble Department.

For more information on preparing parts for orchestral music, visit the Major Orchestra Librarian's Association website and click on "Resources."