The American Composers Forum is pleased to announce the 2024 McKnight Visiting Composers Residency Program. This program is made possible by the generous support of The McKnight Foundation.

Current Participants

The panelists who selected this year’s awardees were Pascal Le Boeuf, Mary Prescott, J.E. Hernández, and Queen Drea.

John Peitso
John Peitso
Tidtaya Sinutoke
Tidtaya Sinutoke
John Peitso photo by Kim Chin-Gibbons; Tidtaya Sinutoke photo by Shawn Poynter

The Purpose of the ACF McKnight Visiting Composer Residencies

The intent of the McKnight Artist and Culture Programs is to recognize and support artists and culture bearers who are beyond emerging and have sustained experience in their area of practice. Visiting Composers demonstrate achievement, commitment, and high level proficiency in artistic and/or culture bearer practice. This program invites artists to respond to, or reflect on, the unique qualities of people and communities in Minnesota.

Awards

  • Two residencies of $10,000 will be awarded. Awards are subject to state and federal income tax guidelines.
  • A $3,000 stipend for travel and lodging expenses during their residency.
  • Funds are distributed directly to the music creator across four installments.
  • Consultation, time, and resources from ACF.

The panelists for the 2024 McKnight Visiting Composer Residencies are:

Pascal Le Boeuf
Pascal Le Boeuf (New York City, NY)
Mary Prescott
Mary Prescott (Minneapolis, MN/ New York City, NYC)
J.E. Hernández
J.E. Hernández (Houston, TX)
Queen Drea
Queen Drea (Saint Paul, MN)

Photo Credits: Pascal Le Boeuf by Shervin Lainez; Mary Prescott by Bill Phelps; J.E. Hernández by Claire McAdams; Queen Drea, photo provided by artist

APPLICATIONS FOR THE 2024 MCKNIGHT VISITING COMPOSER RESIDENCY ARE CLOSED. Please check back soon for the announcement of this cycle’s awardees.

To view the complete guidelines as a separate document, please click HERE.

2024 McKnight Visiting Composer Residency Program

The American Composers Forum (ACF) is pleased to announce the 2024 McKnight Visiting Composer Residency Program. This program is made possible by the generous support of the McKnight Foundation.

GUIDELINE INFORMATION

ONLINE APPLICATION DEADLINE: Friday, December 1, 2023 (11:59 PM Central)

Please note: ACF is intentional in its interchangeable use of the terms artist, music creator, and composer, as we recognize not everyone identifies themselves by one of these terms.

Program Description

  • This program invites artists to respond to or reflect on the unique qualities of people and communities in our home state.
  • ACF will select two music creators for an artistic residency in Minnesota.
  • Artists will design and produce a residency that is integrated with the Minnesota community in a unique way.
  • Visiting composers spend approximately 30 days in Minnesota over an 18-month period, building relationships and working on projects.
  • New work may be part of the residency, but it is not required. The focus is on the exploration of an artist within a Minnesota community.

Eligibility

  • You live outside of Minnesota
  • You have a US Social Security Number or US Tax ID.
  • You are beyond early practice and have sustained experience in your discipline.
  • You demonstrate achievement, commitment, and high level proficiency in music creation practice.
  • You have not been a recipient of a McKnight Artist Fellowship within any artistic discipline in the last five award years. Recipients of 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023 McKnight Fellowships in any discipline are not eligible. 2018 fellows are eligible to apply again for 2024 fellowship awards. Past fellows can search on the McKnight Artists Fellowship webpage to confirm their award year.
  • You are not staff, board, or immediate family of the McKnight Foundation or fellowship administrative partners (including ACF). See the list of all partner organizations named above. The partners are also shown here: https://www.mcknight.org/programs/arts-culture/the-mcknight-artist-fellowships/
  • You are not enrolled full-time in an academic program. (Low-Residency MFA students, and Ph.D. and DMA candidates who have completed all requirements except their dissertation, are not considered “full-time” students.)

Selection Process

A review panel of four music creators, artists, and/or advocates are selected for their familiarity with diverse musical approaches and will review applications and select fellowship recipients.

Prescreening:

  • ACF staff review all applications for eligibility and completeness.

Panel Review Phases:

  • Phase 1 – Independent Review:
    In this phase, panelists are assessing each applicant individually and scoring applicants based on the key evaluation criteria (see below).

    • Panelists will only listen to up to 5 minutes of Work Samples A in this phase.
    • About 50% of the applications will be passed on to the next phase based on combined scores and a review of the list by the panelists.
  • Phase 2 – Panel Review:
    In this phase, panelists will listen to applicants’ music together, and have conversations in which comparative judgements will be made among applicants.

    • Round 1 – Panelists will adjust scores on the key evaluation criteria as needed, and select between five and ten applications to move forward to the next round.
      • Panelists will revisit Work Samples A, this time collectively. If you wish for the panelists to listen to different sections of those same works (always totaling 5 minutes), you have the option to indicate alternative cue times for this review stage.
      • Panelists will listen to up to 10 minutes of Work Samples B.
    • Round 2 – Panelists will provide an overall score and select the two awardees plus alternates and honorable mentions.
      • Panelists may revisit Work Samples A and Work Samples B.

Past curators have included: Maria Chávez, Texu Kim, inti figgis-vizueta, Matthew Evan Taylor, Forbes Graham, Sarah M. Greer, Ritika Ganguly, Danny Clay, Jannina Norpoth, Carlos R. Carrillo, Lovett Hines, Emily Koh, Isaac Schankler, and Samita Sinha.

The ACF staff members who oversee the McKnight Fellowship program do not contribute to the decision-making process or the selection of the McKnight Composer Fellows. The role of the staff is to provide clarity for the review process and to ensure that the curators’ review and the discussions proceed in accordance with the program guidelines.

Key Evaluation Criteria

ACF encourages applicants from the full range of musical approaches/perspectives, and is committed to supporting a diverse pool of artists who demonstrate compelling artistic work. Accordingly, awards for our programs will represent, as far as possible, artists and projects that are diverse in creative methodology, ethnicity, gender, geography, and race.

Residency Proposal:

  • Creative potential, imagination, and effectiveness of the proposed project.
  • Technical proficiency necessary to achieve the desired results as proven by previous experience and work samples.
  • Anticipated value of the residency project for the composer’s artistic work, as well as for the ensemble and/or designated Minnesota community.

The applicant has clearly reached beyond early practice as evidenced by:

  • Significant body of work
  • Creative achievement
  • Sustained contribution to their artistic field

Notification

The panelists’ decision is final and will be announced in March 2024. Results will be posted on ACF’s website and applicants will be notified by email. After the 2024 McKnight Composer Fellowships are announced, all applicants will have the opportunity to set up a 15-minute feedback session with an ACF staff member.

How to Apply

The music creator applicant completes or uploads the following in the Online Application Form via the SlideRoom Application System. The online application can be found HERE.

1. Composer’s Personal Information:

Name, Pronouns, Address, Phone, Email Address, Webpage

2. Questions Regarding Eligibility & Past Participation:

A series of questions to confirm your eligibility for this program and past participation.

3. Project proposal: Link to video (max. duration: 6 minutes), OR typed answer (max. length: 4000 characters, or ca. 600 words)

The project proposal should include a description of your residency goals and planned activities while you are in Minnesota, including your interaction with the community you’ve chosen, why you seek to work in Minnesota, an explanation of the anticipated value of the residency for you and that community, and any other information you would like to present to the curatorial panel. Make sure you address the questions: Why you? And, why Minnesota?

4. Past experiences that have prepared you for this residency: Link to video (max. duration: 6 minutes), OR typed answer (max. length: 4000-character, or ca. 600 words)

Provide information regarding your past collaborative experiences that have prepared you for this residency. Examples may include commissions, community engagement projects, mentorship experience, etc.

5. A list of potential organizational partners in Minnesota, or types of organizations you might like to collaborate with for your project (4000-character max, or ca. 600 words).

After being selected, and prior to the start of a residency in Minnesota, the selected artists will work with ACF to secure collaborative partners that are aligned with their proposed residency and residency goals.

6. Work Samples:

General Guidelines

  • Provide audio/and or video work samples totaling no more than twenty minutes of your original music.
  • At least one of your work samples should be of a work you created in the past five years.
  • If you have previously received a McKnight Fellowship or Residency, concentrate your work samples on the period of time since your last award.

Recommendations

  • Provide web links to your music samples (SoundCloud, YouTube, Vimeo, Google Drive, etc.).
    • Make sure web links you provide in this application remain active and unchanged until February 1st, 2024.
    • If you do not wish for your work samples to be public, please make them unlisted so the committee will still have access.
    • Instructions on How to Create Unlisted Links:
      • SoundCloud: Click HERE
      • Vimeo: Click HERE
      • YouTube: Click HERE
      • Google Drive: Click HERE
  • For each audio/and or video work sample, please submit any accompanying documentation/materials that will provide further insights into your creative process and clearly describe the nature of your involvement in the creation of the piece.
  • If notated scores are part of your creative process, provide PDFs of scores (up to 10MB each) corresponding to the audio or video samples you submitted.
  • If the PDF is larger than 10 MB, a space is given for you to provide a web link to the larger file.
  • Applicants whose work samples involve lyrics are encouraged to provide lyric sheets. This could take the place of a score if one is not present.
  • We are open to receiving many types of sonic representation for the review process, including video, spectrogram, waveform, graphics, etc.
  • Please note panelists will not have access to music notation, electronic music, graphic, video, or other specialized software.

Instructions

  • Work Samples A make the most critical impression on the panelists, and should represent your most distinctive and compelling musical example.
    • You can include one or two work samples (full works or excerpts). Regardless of the duration of the linked or uploaded media, you will indicate start and end cue times for a total duration of 5 minutes.
  • Work Samples B – complements the previous work samples.
    • You must include two different work samples (full works or excerpts). Regardless of the duration of the linked or uploaded media, you will indicate the start and end cue times for a total duration of 10 minutes.

For each Work Sample, you will be asked to provide:

  1. Cue Start and End Times
  2. Title
  3. Full Duration
  4. Year of Completion
  5. Ensemble/Name(s) of Performer(s)
  6. Instrumentation

You may also give other pertinent information you feel would be helpful to the panel, such as why you chose to submit this particular sample (3000 characters, including spaces).

7. Questions regarding social media, information sessions, and how you learned about this opportunity.

8. Acknowledgement of McKnight Artist Fellowship Community Values

9. Acknowledgement of Terms and Conditions

By applying, you attest:

  • You have carefully reviewed the 2024 McKnight Visiting Composer Residency application guidelines.
  • The information supplied in the application is accurate.
  • Application materials submitted are the applicant’s sole and original work.
  • You understand the purpose and conditions of the McKnight Visiting Composer Residency program and you accept them should you be selected as a resident.
  • You are eligible for the competition, and that you will notify the Director of Programs if you become ineligible prior to the conclusion of the competition.
  • Providing false or misleading information on this application, or failing in any other way to comply with the rules will subject you to disqualification and forfeiture of the award.
  • You understand that your application must be completed by the online application deadline of Friday, December 1, 2023 (11:59 PM Central). ACF/McKnight Composer Residency program takes no responsibility for applications that are not in Submitted status at the deadline.

10. Music Creator’s demographic information

In our commitment to racial equity, we include within that scope, but do not limit it to, diverse gender identities, musical approaches and perspectives, religions, ages, abilities, cultures, backgrounds, and sexual orientations.

Sharing your information is optional, but helps us to understand the impact of our efforts to invite and welcome a broad range of artists. This information will not be shared publicly or with funders/other third parties with your name unless explicitly approved by you.

Instructions:

What you share in the 2024 Demographic Information form as part of your SlideRoom application for this program will be included in your application and seen by curators. If you prefer to keep your answers separate/anonymous, please complete this form: https://forms.gle/6e6kDDsug5Xq81NE7. Not sharing your information will not negatively impact your application.

  1. I identify as:
    • BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person Of Color), ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, Native American), Mixed Race, or Global Majority (Black, Asian, Brown, dual-heritage, indigenous to the global south, people that has been racialized as ‘ethnic minorities’)
    • White
  2. Which of the following regions do you identify with? (check all that apply)
    • African descent/Diaspora
    • Southern African descent
    • Central African descent
    • East African descent
    • North African descent
    • West African descent
    • Caribbean descent
    • North American descent
    • Central American descent
    • South American descent
    • Central Asian descent
    • East Asian descent
    • South Asian descent
    • Southeast Asian descent
    • Middle Eastern/Southwest Asian descent
    • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Island descent
    • European descent
    • Decline to State
  3. Please share the words you use to more fully communicate who you are and your experiences. You may include specific race, ethnic, region, national group, and/or tribal/band affiliations with which you identify. (Examples: Alaskan Native, Dakota-Shakopee Mdewakanton, Honduran, Azeri/Persian, Puerto Rican, Nigerian, Hmong, Thai, Scots-Irish, Russian Jewish descent, Laotian, Chicano, Italian, Rural/Remote resident, Yupik, Haitian and Creole, Norwegian, decline to state, I don’t know, etc.)
  4. What gender(s) do you identify with? (check all that apply)
    • Female
    • Gender non-conforming
    • Gender fluid
    • Male
    • Non-binary
    • Two Spirit
    • Decline to State
    • Prefer to self-identify (use open field in next question)
  5. Open field for question above: which gender(s) do you identify with?
  6. Do you identify as transgender?
    • Yes
    • No
    • Decline to State
  7. Do you identify as disabled or as a person with a disability?
    • Yes
    • No
    • Decline to State
  8. Do you identify as neurodivergent?
    • Yes
    • No
    • Decline to State

Additional Information

  • Entries must be submitted electronically on or before 11:59 PM Central on Friday, December 1, 2023.
  • There will be a 24-hour grace period to accommodate any issues submitting your application by the deadline, but your application must have been started before the deadline. After the grace period, late applications will not be considered under any circumstance.
  • Entries submitted by mail or means other than the provided online application process will not be eligible for consideration.

Questions

The American Composers Forum encourages applicants to contact ACF staff to ask questions and discuss potential applications. For general questions regarding the McKnight Composer Fellowship program applications, please contact Oswald Huỳnh, Manager of Artist Support, at ohuynh@composersforum.org.

2023

2023 panelists were Maria Chávez (New York, NY), inti figgis-vizueta (New York, NY), Texu Kim (San Diego, CA), and Matthew Evan Taylor (Burlington, VT).

Yoon Ji Lee Photo By Estro Studio, Haksoo Kim
Yoon-Ji Lee
Steve Parker Photo Courtesy Of The Artist
Steve Parker
Yoon-Ji Lee photo by Estro Studio, Haksoo Kim; Steve Parker photo courtesy of the artist

2022

2022 panelists were Forbes Graham (Boston, MA), Sarah M. Greer (Minneapolis, MN), Ritika Ganguly (Minneapolis, MN), Danny Clay (San Francisco, CA), and Jannina Norpoth (Brooklyn, NY).

Byron Au Yong
Byron Au Yong
Victor Marquez Barrios Photo By Tim Barcus 691px
Victor Márquez-Barrios
Byron Au Young photo by Gaku Shiroma; Victor Márquez-Barrios photo by Tim Barcus

2021 Participants

2021 panelists were Carlos R. Carrillo (Urbana, IL), Lovett Hines (Philadelphia, PA), Emily Koh (Norcross, GA), Isaac Schankler (Pasadena, CA), and Samita Sinha (Jackson Heights, NY).

J.E. Hernández
J.E. Hernández
2021 McKnight Visiting Composer Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti
Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti
J.E. Hernández photo by Spencer Young ; Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti photo by Blaise Hayward Studio

2020 Participants

2020 panelists were composers Carolina Heredia (Columbia, MO), Donovan Mixon (Evanston, IL), and Beth Wiemann (Maynard, MA).

Nathan Hall Photo by Sten Melin
Nathan Hall
Angélica Negrón  Photo by Catalina Kulczar
Angélica Negrón
Nathan Hall photo by Sten Melin; Angélica Negrón photo by Catalina Kulczar

2019 Participants

2019 panelists were composers Gavin Chuck (Chicago, IL), Elainie Lillios (Bowling Green OH), and Gilda Lyons (Rhinebeck, NY)

Sergio Barer
Sergio Barer
Danny Clay
Danny Clay
Sergia Barer photo by KI Concerts; Danny Clay photo by John Fisher

 

2018 Participants

Anthony R. Green Photo by: Colin Conces
Anthony R. Green
Photo by: Colin Conces
Volker Goetze
Volker Goetze

2017 Participants

Paul Giess of Philadelphia, PA
Paul Giess
Philadelphia, PA
Kristin Norderval of New York, NY
Kristin Norderval
New York, NY

2016 Participants

2016 McKnight Visiting Composer Wang Jie
Wang Jie
New York, NY
2016 McKnight Visiting Composer Peter Michael Von Der Nahmer Copy
Peter Michael Von Der Nahmer
Ozone Park, NY

 

2015:  Clarice Assad and Wayne Horvitz
Panelists: David Dzubay, Aruán Ortiz, Zeena Parkins

2014:  Robin Eschner and Pamela Z
Panelists: Amir ElSaffar, Stacy Garrop, and Daniel Trueman

2013:  Chris Coyle and Jin Hi Kim
Panelists: Anne LeBaron, Nicole Mitchell, Sven-David Sandstrom

2012:  Hugh Livingston and Charles Peck
Panelists: Nancy Galbraith, Graham Reynolds, Huang Ruo

2011:  William J. Lackey, Kanniks Kannikeswaran
Panelists: Linda Dusman, J.D. Parran, Jack Perla

2010: Ellen Fullman, David James Nielsen
Panelists: Fernando Benadon, David Conte, Mary Jane Leach

2009: Eve Beglarian, Ryan Ingebritsen
Panelists: Derek Bermel, Jennifer Bilfield, Newman Baker

2008: Jeff Herriot, William Neil
Panelists: Mark Applebaum, Margaret Leng-Tan, David Stock

2007: Billy Fox, Evan Solot
Panelists: Susie Ibarra, Matthew Levy, Steven Stucky

2006: Sidiki Conde, Stuart Hyatt
Panelists: Milford Graves, Belinda Reynolds, Neil Rolnick

2005: Todd Hammes, Susan Haugh
Panelists: Eleanor Hovda, Robert Moran, Roger Kleier

2004: Michelle Nagai, Ushio Torikai
Panelists: Jason Hwang, Alex Shapiro, Kevin Stahlheim

2003: Oliver Lake, John Morton
Panelists: Fred Frith, Anthony deMare, Ileana Perez Velazquez

2002: Steven Rosenthal, Janek Schaefer
Panelists: Joel Chadabe, Melissa Hui, David Cleary

2001: Kenny Endo, Annie Gosfield & Roger Kleier
Panelists: Chinary Ung, Eve Beglarian, Philip Bimstein

2000: Fred Ho, Beth Custer
Panelists: Bill Brooks, Tamar Diesendruck, Adolphus Hailstork

1999: Brenda Hutchinson, Susan Rawcliffe
Panelists: Ellen Christi, Allen Strange, Regina Baiocchi

1998: Ron George, Richard Johnson
Panelists: John Duffy, Fred Ho, Judith Shatin

1997: Ermir Dergjini, Pamela Z
Panelists: Sebastian Currier, Anne Deane, Gustavo Matamoros

1996: Brent Michael Davids, David Revill
Panelists: Orlando Garcia, James Tenney, Augusta Reed Thomas

1995: William Banfield, Dan Senn
Panelists: Warren Burt, Fran Richard, Lois Vierk

Welcome to the McKnight Artist Fellowships community!  The McKnight Foundation and the administering partners for the McKnight Artist Fellowships are committed to creating and supporting an artistic community in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity.  The community of the McKnight Artist Fellowships includes people who engage with the fellowships program whether as applicants, fellows, panelists, contractors, collaborators, fellowships administrators, and staff of the McKnight Foundation and partnering organizations.

As a community, we commit to creating and maintaining relationships that are free from harm, prejudice, and harassment.  Community members agree to communicate directly and transparently regarding issues of conduct that could negatively impact the well-being of participating members and organizations.

In the case of an accusation, legal action, or conviction, the McKnight Foundation and its fellowship program partners may gather and assess relevant information.  If deemed necessary, the McKnight Foundation and its fellowship program partners may take administrative action up to and including the recommendation of participation in reconciliation or restorative justice processes; disqualification of an application; the termination of a contract; and the recall and/or termination of a fellowship.

This community will be what we make it and our aim is to collectively create an experience in which all artists and members of the McKnight Artist Fellowships community thrive.

For more information about this statement, read this announcement.

ACF staff will offer two 60-minute 2024 McKnight Visiting Composer Residency Application Information Sessions online to go over the application process. Throughout these sessions there will be time to ask questions regarding the application process and its various components.

Session 1: Tuesday, October 3rd – 3-4 PM Central Time
Topic: we will review all guidelines and walk through the application process in SlideRoom.
WATCH HERE
PDF OF PRESENTATION

Session 2: Thursday, October 5th – 3-4 PM Central Time
Topic: we will examine previous awardees’ applications as case studies.
WATCH HERE
SAMPLE APPLICATION 1
SAMPLE APPLICATION 2

If you need one-on-one assistance with your application, please email Oswald Huỳnh at ohuynh@composersforum.org to schedule a meeting.