Opus 32 Information

Opus 32 logo

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Our spring 2017 Opus concert will feature strings, woodwinds and piano. The event will take place on Monday, May 15 at Elley-Long Music Center at St. Michael's College in Colchester. Available instrumentation is violin I, violin II, viola, cello, bass, flute, oboe or English horn, clarinet or bass clarinet, bassoon or contrabassoon, and piano. Professional composer mentors will select about 25 works for the performance from those submitted for online mentoring. Submission details, fee info, selection criteria, and composing resources available below.

Important Dates to Remember for Opus 32:

2/9 - First submissions due (but you may begin submitting works at any time)

3/30 - Final posting for mentor selection

4/3 - Announcement of selected works

4/13 - Score preparation for selected compositions due

5/15 - Concert at Elley-Long Music Center. Rehearsals begin at noon. Concurrent workshops and rehearsals continue through the afternoon. Buffet dinner at 5:15. Concert at 6:30 pm.


Online Mentoring Required within New Mentoring Site: All teachers and students will need to register, and create a new profile even if they used the mentoring site prior to July 2016. Usernames and passwords for our old site are no longer valid. The handout below will help with the registration process.

Music-COMP Guide to New Mentoring Site

 Submission Details:

  • All works for Opus 32 must be submitted for online mentoring. (Register for mentoring here. Music-COMP participants only. Read how to participate.)
  • First drafts may be as short as 4 measures. These works will develop through the online mentoring process. 
  • Finished works as short as 16 measures are acceptable, especially from younger students.
  • Maximum length for any work is 3 minutes.
  • Mix or match from all available instruments. The event benefits from a variety of solos, duets, trios, quartets, and larger ensembles.

Opus 32 Fees: 

  • There is no entry fee, but online mentoring fees apply. Payment for online mentoring prior to posting is required.
  • If selected for the Opus 32 performance, a student pays a $65 performance fee. This includes a rehearsal with the musicians, dinner, workshops, DVD recording of the event. Fees help defray the cost of hall rental, musicians, marketing, afternoon snacks and dinner. Our total event expenses including mentoring is about $12,500.
  • Additional student composers are welcome to attend the event day for a $15 fee which covers dinner, snacks, concert, and workshops.
  • The concert is free and open to the public. It is family friendly with a 6:30 pm concert. Invite a large crowd! We welcome and need donations to continue Opus concerts in the future.
  • Parents and families are welcome to reserve dinner at the event space. More info and onllne reservation system coming soon. The price is around $11 per person for a buffet with a choice of main dishes, salad, bread, drinks and dessert.
  • Selected students must attend the rehearsal and performance for their selected work to be performed. Online options available for out of state students.

Selection Criteria:

Music-COMP professional composer mentors review the student works on the mentoring website at the conclusion of the Opus 32 posting time. Mentors vote on those compositions "best for live performance" within three grade level groups: elementary, middle level, and high school. Announcement of those selected works will be Monday, April 3, 2017 by noon on this website. If selected, the student work is not finished, but ready for the final details of score preparation - an important step prior to sending scores and parts to musicians. A professional composer mentor will guide each student in score preparation which must be completed by April 13th. This process usually take two or three more discussions and 7-10 days to complete.

Mentors review each work for: correct range for the instruments; accurate notation; evidence of dynamics, articulations, and expressive marks to convey the student composer's intent. The score must be titled and include the name of the student composer. 

Resources for Composing and Mentoring: Go to  for podcasts and score examples created by Erik Nielsen to guide your composition should you choose oboe, bassoon, viola or contrabass – also called double bass, string bass or upright bass.


Tags: live performance, student composition