NBA/William D. Revelli Composition Contest
William D. Revelli Composition Contest
Sponsored by Bob Rogers Travel
The William D. Revelli Composition Contest has awarded prizes since 1977. It is named after Dr. William Revelli, who served as Director of Bands at the University of Michigan for 36 years, and served as NBA President from 1976-78. It is the desire of the National Band Association that the winning compositions from this contest reflect its mission in helping further the cause of quality literature for bands in America. Additionally, works chosen as winners should be those not only of significant structural, analytical, and technical quality, but also of such nature that will allow bands to program them as part of their standard repertoire. As a result, a glance through our list of past winners will reveal some very familiar names.
Each year the contest receives approximately 50-80 entries from all over the world. Entries range in scope and quality and are from new to well established veteran composers. During the evaluation process, entries are narrowed down to a select number of finalists, which are brought to Chicago each December during the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic. There, a panel of leading public school, university, and military band directors meets to determine a winner.
2020 Revelli Composition Contest Application
Contest Selection Committee:
- Chair: Matthew McCutchen, University of South Florida
- Terry Austin, Virginia Commonwealth University
- Marcellus Brown, Boise State University (ID)
- John Burn, Homestead High School (CA)
- Catharine Sinon Bushman, St. Cloud State University (MN)
- Col. Jason Fettig, U.S. Marine Band (DC)
- Jay Gephart, Purdue University (IN)
- Arris Golden, Michigan State University
- Jennifer Hamilton, Red Mountain High School (AZ)
- Chadwick Kamei, Pearl City High School (HI)
- Tremon Kizer, University of Central Florida
- Diane Koutsulis, Retired (NV)
- Jason Nam, Indiana University
- Scott Rush, Fine Arts Supervisor, Dorchester School District (SC)
- Shanti Simon, University of Oklahoma
- John Thomson, Roosevelt University (IL)
2019 Contest Winner: Omar Thomas
Each year, the NBA William D. Revelli Memorial Composition Contest Committee gathers at the Midwest Conference to select the piece they believe best reflects the mission to help further the cause of quality literature for bands in America. The 2019 winner is Omar Thomas with his winning work titled Come Sunday.
Omar Thomas has been commissioned to create works for both jazz and classical ensembles and his works have been performed by such diverse groups as the Eastman New Jazz Ensemble, the San Francisco and Boston Gay Mens’ Choruses, and the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, in addition to a number of the country’s top collegiate music ensembles. Born to Guyanese parents in Brooklyn, New York in 1984, Thomas moved to Boston in 2006 to pursue a Master of Music in Jazz Composition at the New England Conservatory of Music. He is the protégé of composers and educators Ken Schaphorst and Frank Carlberg, and has also studied under multiple Grammy-winning composer and bandleader Maria Schneider. While still completing his master’s degree, Thomas was appointed Assistant Professor of Harmony at the Berklee College of Music at the age of 23. He is currently on faculty in the Music Theory department at The Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Thomas’s first album, I AM, debuted at #1 on iTunes Jazz Charts and peaked at #13 on the Billboard Traditional Jazz Albums Chart. His second release, We Will Know: An LGBT Civil Rights Piece in Four Movements, was awarded two OUTMusic Awards, including Album of the Year. For this work, Thomas was also named the 2014 Lavender Rhino Award recipient by The History Project, acknowledging his work as an up-and-coming activist in the Boston LGBTQ community. Thomas is one of seven members of the Blue Dot Collective, a group of composers dedicated to creating new works for wind band that are “well-crafted, compelling, sincere, exciting, and fresh.” Music by Thomas was played twice during the 2019 Midwest Clinic. The Austin, Texas-based Grisham Middle School Honors Band, under the direction of guest conductor Jerry F. Junkin, performed Shenandoah, Thomas’s soulful and occasionally ominous 2019 reworking of the celebrated American folk song, and the Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina-based Wando High School Symphonic Band, under the direction of Bobby Lambert, performed the second movement of Come Sunday.
Omar Thomas describes Come Sunday as “a two-movement tribute to the Hammond organ’s central role in black worship services. The first movement, ‘Testimony,’ follows the Hammond organ as it readies the congregation’s hearts, minds, and spirits to receive The Word via a magical union of Bach, blues, jazz, and R&B. The second movement, ‘Shout!,’ is a virtuosic celebration – the frenzied and joyous climactic moments when The Spirit has taken over the service. The title is a direct nod to Duke Ellington, who held an inspired love for classical music and allowed it to influence his own work in a multitude of ways. To all the black musicians in wind ensemble who were given opportunity after opportunity to celebrate everyone else’s music but our own – I see you and I am you. This one’s for the culture!”
For more information on the composer and his work, visit his website.
Previous Winners of the NBA/William D. Revelli Composition Contest
|Omar Thomas||Come Sunday||2019|
|Wayne Oquin||Song for Silent Voices||Composer||2018|
|James Stephenson||Symphony No. 2 "Voices"||Composer||2017|
|Philip Sparke||A Colour Symphony||Anglo Music Press||2016|
|Paul Dooley |
|Masks and Machines|
|Oliver Waespi||Audivi Media Nocte||Hal Leonard-deHaske||2013|
|Michael Schelle||The End of the World||Composer||2012|
|Steven Bryant||Ecstatic Waters||Composer||2010|
|John Mackey||Aurora Awakes||Composer||2009|
|Steven Bryant||Suite Dreams||Composer||2008|
|Steven Bryant||Radiant Joy||Composer||2007|
|Frank Ticheli||Symphony No. 2||Manhattan Beach||2006|
|Philip Sparke||Music of the Spheres||Anglo Music Press||2005|
|Joseph Turrin||Illuminations for Solo Trombone and Wind Symphony||Composer||2004|
|Pro Nova Music|
Boosey & Hawkes
|Joseph Spaniola||Escapade||Musica Propria||2001|
|David Kechley||Restless Birds Before the Dark Moon||Pine Valley||2000|
|Donald Grantham||Southern Harmony||Piquant||1999|
|Donald Grantham||Fantasy Variations||Piquant||1998|
|Warren Benson||The Drums of Summer||Composer||1997|
|Donald Grantham||Bum's Rush||Piquant||1995|
|Jeffrey Hass||Lost in the Fun House||Composer||1994|
|James Syler||The Hounds of Heaven||Composer||1993|
|Ron Nelson||Passacaglia (Homage on B-A-C-H)||Ludwig||1992|
|Mark Camphouse||To Build a Fire||TRN||1991|
|Paul Epstein||The Adventures of Matinee Concerto||Composer||1990|
|Gordon Ring||Concerto for Piano, Winds, and Percussion||Composer||1989|
|Martin Mailman||For Precious Friends Hid in Death's Dateless Nights||Ludwig||1988|
|Anthony Iannaccone||Apparitions for Symphonic Band||Ludwig||1987|
|Michael Colgrass||Winds of Nagual||Fischer (Rental)||1985|
|Arthur Gottschalk||Concerto for Wind and Percussion Orchestra||Composer||1984|
|Gregory Youtz||Scherzo for a Bitter Moon||TRN||1983|
|David Gillingham||Concerto for Bass Trombone and Band||Fischer (Rental)||1981|
|Byron Tate||Between Worlds||Composer||1980|
|Jerome Sorczek||Variations for Band||Composer||1977|
|No Award Made||1982|
|No Award Made||1986|
NBA/Merrill Jones Composition Contest
Merrill Jones Young Band Composition Contest
The NBA/Merrill Jones Memorial Young Composer Band Composition Contest was established in 1991 as a memorial to Merrill Jones, co-owner of Wingert-Jones Music Company, by his widow, Priscilla Jones. Mr. Jones was concerned always with helping the young composer. NBA past president Robert (Bob) Foster suggested a young composer contest, which would promote works for young bands. The result was a contest for composers under 40 years of age to be held every other year, now in the even numbered years, and which would produce works for concert band in the Grade 3-4 category.
Works must not exceed eight (8) minutes in length, must be the original work of the composer, and not be under contract to any publisher. Deadline for submission is November 1st. The contest is held every two years unless no winner is chosen. Wingert-Jones reserves the right of first refusal for publication. The current prize to the winner is $2000. The winner is announced at the NBA General Membership Meeting at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago following a meeting of the contest committee. The contest committed is chaired by NBA member Dennis Zeisler.
2020 Merrill Jones Contest Application (will be updated by Summer 2019)
2018 Contest Winner: James M. David
James David of Colorado Springs, Colorado, is the 2018 winner of the NBA/Merrill Jones Composition Contest. His winning composition is entitled With Soul Serene.
Dr. James M. David (b. 1978) is an internationally recognized composer who currently serves as associate professor of composition and music theory at Colorado State University and is particularly known for his works involving winds and percussion. His symphonic works for winds have been performed by some of the nation’s most prominent professional and university ensembles including the U.S. Army and Air Force Bands, the Dallas Wind Symphony, the Des Moines Symphony, the Ohio State University Bands, Northwestern University Bands, and the University of North Texas Wind Symphony among many others. His compositions have been presented at more than fifty national and international conferences throughout North and South America, Asia, Europe, and Australia. These events include the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic, the American Bandmasters Association Convention, the College Band Directors National Association Conferences, the National Band Association Conferences, the College Music Society National Conference, the Society of Composers, Inc. National Conference, seven International Clarinet Fests, the International Horn Symposium, the World Saxophone Congress, the International Trombone Festival, and the Percussive Arts Society International Convention. Among the distinctions David has earned as a composer are an ASCAP Morton Gould Award, the National Band Association Merrill Jones Award, national first-place winner in the MTNA Young Artists Composition Competition, two Global Music Awards, and national first-place winner in the National Association of Composers (USA) Young Composers Competition. Commissions include projects for Joseph Alessi (New York Philharmonic), John Bruce Yeh (Chicago Symphony Orchestra), Zachary Shemon (Prism Quartet), the Oasis Quartet, BlueShift Percussion Quartet, Gerry Pagano (St. Louis Symphony), The International Saxophone Symposium and Competition, The Playground Ensemble, and the Atlantic Coast Conference Band Directors Association.
As a native of southern Georgia, Dr. David began his musical training under his father Joe A. David, III, a renowned high school band director and professor of music education in the region. This lineage can be heard in his music through the strong influence of jazz and other Southern traditional music mixed with contemporary idioms. He graduated with honors from the University of Georgia and completed his doctorate in composition at Florida State University under Guggenheim and Pulitzer recipients Ladislav Kubik and Ellen Taaffe Zwilich. His music is available through Murphy Music Press, C. Alan Publications, Potenza Music, and Lovebird Music and has been recorded for the Naxos, Albany, Summit, Luminescence, and MSR Classics labels.
For more information on this composer and his music, visit his website.
Contest Selection Committee
- Chair: Dennis Zeisler, Old Dominion University (VA)
- Lt. Kelly Cartwright, U.S. Pacific Fleet Band (HI)
- A.G. “Mack” McGrannahan, Retired (NV)
- Nan Moore, Retired (KY)
- Mike Oare, Great Bridge Middle School (VA)
- Scott Pierson, Yelm High School (WA)
- Paul Popiel, University of Kansas
- Mickey Stisher, LaPorte High School (IN)
- Scott Weiss, University of South Carolina
Previous Winners of the NBA/Merrill Jones Composition Contest
|James M. David||With Soul Serene||Composer||2018|
|Joshua Hummel||Fanfare for the Appalachians: I-77||2016|
|David Faleris||Of Chivalry and Valor||Composer||2014|
|Jess Turner||Exultant Heart||Wingert Jones||2012|
|Jack Hughes||After Rain||Wingert Jones||2010|
|No Award Given||2009|
|Ryan Main||The Clash||Wingert Jones||2007|
|Brett Dietz||shards of glass||Wingert Jones||2005|
|Jonathan Newman||Moon by Night||Wingert Jones||2003|
|Samuel Hazo||Novo Lenio||Wingert Jones||2001|
|Charles Rochester Young||Legends of the Northern Wind||Southern||1999|
|No Award Given||1998|
|Robert T. Smith||Panther Fire||Southern||1996|
|David Checketts||Festival de Ladrones (Festival of Thieves)||TRN Publishers||1994|
|Robert Cronin||A Soldier's March||Wingert Jones||1992|
NBA Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest
NBA Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest
Jorge Machain Wins NBA’s Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest for 2019
Jorge Machain’s original composition, Por Ahor, won the 2019 NBA Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest. The work was performed at the 2019 Midwest Clinic by the United States Navy Commodores, directed by MUCS William Mulligan, on Thursday, December 19th at McCormick Place.
Born in 1993, Jorge Machain is a Mexican native who currently calls Las Vegas his home. He is an active musician in the Las Vegas scene having played shows such Showstoppers at the Wynn, Zombie Burlesque in Planet Hollywood, Georgia On My Mind at the Venetian Hotel, to name a few. Jorge graduated from UNLV with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Composition and is currently working towards completing his Master of Music in Jazz Composition.
In addition to performing, he composes for both classic and jazz ensembles. He has won multiple Downbeat awards for his arrangements and was a finalist in the 2018 NBA Revelli competition for his piece Bite the Bullet, commissioned by Thomas Leslie, Director of Bands UNLV, finalist of the Morton Gould Young Composer Competition for 2019, and winner of the 2019 NBA Young Composers Jazz Composition Contest for his original composition Por Ahora. Upcoming premiers include a drum set concerto written for Bernie Dresel, commissioned by Thomas Leslie, and a trombone solo commissioned by Joseph Alessi, principal trombonist of the New York Philharmonic.
Learn more about this composer and his music here.
2011: Susumu Watanabe – Duodecim
2012: Brendon McMullin – Sal y Pimienta
2013: David von Kampen – Hodie Christus Natus Est
2014: Sean Nelson – Every Possible History of the Universe
2015: Jessika Smith – Cyan Thread
2016: Cassio Vianna – April Song
2017: No prize awarded
2018: Matt Horanzy – Init 1
2019: Jorge Machain – Por Ahora
NBA Jazz Composition Contest Flyer
Have a question? Nee more Information?
Email Erich Rivero, Jazz Composition Contest Chair
NBA/Alfred Young Band Composition Contest
Alfred Publishing Young Band Composition Contest
Sponsored by Alfred Publishing
The NBA/Alfred Publishing Young Band Composition Contest is sponsored by Alfred Publishing. Special thanks to composer and music educator Robert Sheldon for his support and guidance in establishing this special partnership with the National Band Association. This young band contest seeks to find composers writing for grades 1-3. There is a cash prize for the winner, plus the possibility of the winning work being published in Alfred’s Young Band catalog. The next contest year is 2020. For information, email the contest chair, Audrey Murphy.
2020 Young Band Composition Contest Application – will be updated in Fall 2019
2018 Contest Winner: Andrew David Perkins – Gradients
The National Band Association is pleased to announce that Gradients by Andrew David Perkins is the winning composition of the 2018 NBA/Alfred Young Band Composition Contest.
Perkins (b.1978) is a conductor, composer, two-time ASCAP Plus Award recipient and Grammy nominated music educator. He earned a specialist certificate in Orchestration from the Berklee College of Music, a Master of Music degree from the University of Michigan, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Michigan State University. Nominated for The National Band Association Revelli and Merrill Jones Composition Contests, The American Prize (Professional Composition Division) and the Ravel International Composition Prize, Perkins’ music has been performed by musicians from the Royal College of Music, London, Michigan State University, Bowling Green State University, The Interlochen World Youth Wind Symphony, Western Michigan University, Drexel University, Florida Central University, and more. A regular guest clinician nationally and abroad, he especially enjoys writing music for developing musicians.
Mr. Perkins has served as an adjunct professor of Film Scoring at Madonna University in Livonia, Michigan and is currently the Director of Instrumental Music and Music Technology at Fenton High School & Andrew G. Schmidt Middle School in Fenton, Michigan. He additionally serves as the Music Director and Conductor of the Fenton Community Orchestra, and is a member of the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). His music is exclusively published through APOLLO STUDIOS Music Publishing.
Mr. Perkins says the following about Gradients:
“In physics, gradients can describe an increase or decrease in the magnitude of a property (e.g., temperature, pressure, or concentration) observed in passing from one point or moment to another. In mathematics, the gradient is a synonym for slope. It points in the direction of the greatest rate of increase of a function, and its magnitude is the slope of the graph in that direction. Gradients for Concert Band is a synthesis of these ideas, designed for developing musicians. The gradient concept is expressed through dynamics, cluster chords (including a simple 4 mallet marimba part) and extensive use of the melodic minor scale.”
To learn more about Gradients and composer Andrew David Perkins, visit his website at www.andrewdavidperkins.com.
2012: Clifton Jones – Rondo Picoso
2014: Erika Svanoe – The Haunted Carousel
2016: Haley Woodrow – And it Begins
2018: Andrew Perkins – Gradients