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Sibelius Student Composer Of The Year competition

Songwriting contest for 10-18 year-olds

Following the success of last year’s inaugural Sibelius Student Composer Of The Year competition, the scoring software developers are running another competition for 10 to 18 year-olds. The contest encourages young people to write music in one of three categories: Jazz, Film (Supported by the British Film Institute and the National Film & Television School) and Classical/Contemporary. Entries can be written in any music software, not just Sibelius, with the main focus of the competition on “highlighting the growing importance of technology by unleashing musical creativity in young people”.

To enter, you must register on-line at the Sibelius Student Composer page of Sibelius’ web site. Sibelius are encouraging music teachers to register their students, but individuals can register alone just as easily. Once registered, entries can be submitted electronically at any time until October 31st 2008, but only one entry is permitted per student.

Files can be uploaded in a variety of formats, including SIB (Sibelius’ song file format), MP3 and AAC. Movies to accompany film soundtracks can be submitted in MOV, WMV, AVI and MP4 format.

The window for entries will close on the 31st October, at which time the judging process will begin. Sibelius have drafted in an all-star line-up of judges, who specialise in the different categories of the competition. So on the film-scoring panel are Dario Marianelli (Atonement), Harry Gregson-Williams (Shrek The Third) and Patrick Doyle (Harry Potter & The Goblet Of Fire), among others. Classical/Contemporary judges include composer Steve Reich, Classic FM presenter Simon Bates and conductor Leonard Slatkin, while Django Bates, Billy Cobham and Gil Goldstein will sit on the Jazz panel.

The judges for each category will choose a shortlist of finalists, before an on-line public voting stage begins in mid-November. The winner will be chosen mid-December.

Prizes include a live performance of the winning compositions and masterclasses with leading composers and musicians plus cash and Sibelius software prizes for the student and a Sibelius software multi-pack for their school.

For full entry details, including category briefs, check out Sibelius’ web site.

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