«Composing Nature», now arrived at its fourth edition, is a composition masterclass focusing on percussion instruments. It is open to students and composers of any age or nationality and it takes place in Lavarone, a beautiful town on the mountains in northern Italy. Admitted participants will have the opportunity of working on a piece for percussions together with two tutors and a percussion ensemble, taking inspiration from the local territory’s features and history.


The institutions involved in this project are: Conservatorio di Musica “C. Pollini” di Padova, Comune di Lavarone, APT Alpe Cimbra and Taverna Maderna.
Italian composer Giovanni Bonato and percussionist Massimo Pastore will be the tutors. Art Percussion Ensemble, directed by prof. Pastore, will be the ensemble in residence.
For any information on the course you can contact Leonardo Mezzalira at info@tavernamaderna.it.


From August 21st to August 29th, 2024.


The course will take place in Lavarone, a municipality of the district of Trento, around 1100 meters above sea level. The spaces for the activities will be provided by Comune di Lavarone; during the week the participants will be offered the opportunity to explore the local territory through walks and trips accompanied by an expert guide.


  • Applications are open until June 30th, 2024. After the deadline, selection of participants will be carried on as soon as possible.
  • The festival can provide letters of invitation upon request, to aid in visa processing and/or external travel grants.
  • Admitted composers will then be invited to pay the contribution for the course (€ 350,00 in total). Students currently enrolled in any courses of the “C. Pollini” Conservatory of Padua are exempt from the contribution.
  • Participants need to take care of transportation, lodging and food themselves. For information and advice it is possible to contact the organization or the local tourist office (alpecimbra.it).
  • All participants will receive a portfolio of materials relating to the territory of Lavarone and the Cimbrian Alps, which they can refer to as they are asked to imagine a piece that directly or indirectly refers to the territory, its history, its visual and sound landscape.
  • All participants are advised to prepare a sketch or project of their piece in advance (see the guidelines below).
  • During the first days of the course, theoretical and practical lessons will be held on percussion writing and repertoire, and short outings may be planned to get to know the area (it is recommended to bring suitable clothing). Participants will work on their own piece under the supervision of the teachers.
  • Starting from Sunday 25 August the ensemble will be present in residence, rehearsing the pieces written by the participants. Some of the proposed pieces will be performed at the final concert, scheduled for August 29, 2024.

Download the application form (PDF)

The application form must be completed, signed, and sent by e-mail to info@tavernamaderna.it. The same e-mail must contain the following attachments:

  • Copy of an ID of the participant;
  • 1 to 3 recent scores in PDF format (should they be of big dimension an online transfer service can be used)
  • A short CV.

Admitted participants will be informed about how to transfer the 350€ contribution.

It is possible to attend the lessons as a listener, by filling out the relevant form and paying the registration fee (€150 for the entire course, €30 daily admission, no cost for students of the “C. Pollini” Conservatory of Padua). There is no deadline for applications to participate as listeners.

All lessons, rehearsals and other activities will be scheduled on site. At the end of the course all active students will receive a certificate and the performances will be recorded and filmed.

Guidelines for active participants

All pieces composed by the participants should be around 3 minutes long and require max 4 performers. Available instruments:

Marimba (5 octaves) – Vibraphone (4 octaves) – Concert bass drum – 3 Tam-Tams (low, medium, high) – 4 Cymbals – 3 Drums (1 piccolo, 1 Snare Drum, 1 Side Drum) – 4 Tom-Toms – 3 Bongos pairs – 1 Congas pair – 2 Cowbells – 2 Woodblocks – 3 Dobachis.

Small instruments, instruments provided by the composer and easy-to-procure objects can be added to the instrumentation by informing the organization.

For any information about the instrumentation please contact Leonardo Mezzalira at info@tavernamaderna.it