SCI Jazz Composition Award

The Society of Composers, Inc. (SCI) is proud to announce its fifth annual Jazz Composition Award. One First Prize of $500 (USD) will be awarded to the most outstanding new work for jazz ensemble.

There is no fee to submit to the 2021 competition, but all entrants must be SCI members at the time of submission. Join SCI at Membership discounts are available for students and individuals identifying as Black, Indigenous, or people of color (BIPOC).


All SCI members in good standing are eligible, regardless of age, student status, geographic location, gender, ethnicity, or any other criteria.

Submission Criteria

  • Applicants may only submit one work.
  • Submitted works must have been composed in the past 5 years from the submission deadline.
  • Works scored for standard jazz band instrumentation (5 saxophones with or without standard doubles, 4 trumpets/flugelhorns, 4 trombones, piano, guitar, bass, drums) are eligible. Submitted works may include 1-3 additional performers or instruments (solo instrument, vocalist, percussion, electronics, etc.) or use a smaller jazz band instrumentation (e.g. 3 trombones), but works for jazz combo (i.e. 5-7 performers) are not eligible.
  • Only original works are eligible; arrangements are not eligible.
    Works which have received an award in a national or international composition contest are not eligible.
  • All works which comply with the above guidelines are eligible, regardless of performance/recording history or lack thereof.

The contest will be judged by three musicians external to SCI. Names and locations of the judges will be revealed after the close of the competition. Judges reserve the right to name Honorable Mentions in addition to the contest winner. The contest winner will be determined through deliberation by the judges and ultimately named by unanimous consent. In the event of an irreconcilable disagreement between the judges, the contest winner will be chosen by the award coordinator from among the judges’ finalists.

To Apply

Submit an application and materials via New Music Engine at You will need a PDF score, an mp3 recording, and a bio (under 250 words).

Submit a score in PDF format.

Submit a recording in mp3 format. While live/studio recordings are encouraged, MIDI recordings will be accepted.

All submission materials should be anonymous, i.e. free of any information identifying the composer (name, publishing entity, etc.). Submissions bearing identifying marks may be discarded or returned for resubmission, at the discretion of the judges and/or award coordinator.

Receipt Deadline: September 16, 2022, 11:59pm

For additional information or questions, contact the contest coordinator, Greg Simon, at [email protected]

Winners will be notified by the end of November and announced by December 31, 2022.

SCI and Racial Justice
The leadership of SCI fully recognizes the ongoing struggles of Americans of color and their communities to achieve safety and security for themselves, their families, and their loved ones. We strongly and publicly support their efforts to insist on justice and opportunity for themselves and their communities. Moreover, we recognize our responsibility as an arts organization to fight the racial injustices that pervade not only music communities, but all communities nationwide. Jazz owes its existence to the genius of Black musicians and composers; and we offer the Jazz Composition Award with inexpressible gratitude to the contributions that marginalized artists of color have made to the musical world, in America and beyond. SCI continues to seek new ways to create a more equitable music world through advocacy, philanthropy, and opportunities benefiting marginalized composers.

About SCI
The Society of Composers, Inc. is a professional society dedicated to the promotion, performance, understanding and dissemination of new and contemporary music. Members of SCI receive access to members-only resources and opportunities, and are eligible to attend and present at SCI’s national and regional conferences every year. Membership is open to composers of all types and career paths, and discounts on memberships are available to students and members of traditionally underrepresented communities.