The South Bend Symphony Orchestra is pleased to invite applications for the 2023 “Crossroads of America” Competition for Indiana Composers. Indiana composers are invited to submit a five-minute piece for chamber orchestra. Four composers will be selected, and their pieces will be performed by the South Bend Symphony Orchestra on January 8, 2023, as part of the June H. Edwards Mosaic Series, after which one of the composers will be chosen to compose a 10-minute piece to be premiered during the Symphony’s 2023-24 season.


  • Composers from, or residing in Indiana, are invited to apply. There is no age limit.
  • Works should have never been publicly performed by a professional orchestra, never published, or awarded a prize in a competition.
  • Compositions should be approximately five-minutes in length. Compositions longer than five and a half minutes will be disqualified.
  • Compositions should be scored for a maximum instrumentation of 2222, 2200, T+1, pno, hp, str (66442, # of players). Auxiliary doubling on piccolo and English Horn is available, standard percussion, Timpani can double on percussion, C extension on double basses. There is no minimum instrumentation requirement, though composers are encouraged to use the full complement.
  • Incomplete, illegible, or late applications will not be considered.
  • The top four selected composers will be invited to South Bend for a performance on January 8, 2023. Travel, and lodging for two nights, will be provided by the Symphony.
  • Following the performance, votes will be gathered from the audience, orchestra, and jury. The composer with the most votes will be commissioned to compose a ten-minute piece to be premiered during the Symphony’s 2023-2024 season.

Application Process

  • Composers should submit an anonymous PDF file of their score notated with digital software (Finale, Sibelius, etc.) and an audio recording (MIDI, live readthrough, or student performance) via email to The email should have the subject: “Crossroads of America Competition.” The composer’s name, title of the work, and a short program note should be included in the body of the message. Manuscript scores will not be accepted.
  • The scores included in the PDF must be anonymous for distribution to the jury; they should bear no name or any reference that could be traced to the name of the composer. Non-anonymous entries will be disqualified.
  • There is no application fee.

Selection Process

  • The creativity, quality, and idiomatic instrumental writing of the score submitted will constitute the primary evaluation criteria. It is in the applicant’s best interest that the score be clear, accurate, and the best representation of the composer’s work.
  • All compositions received will be reviewed and adjudicated by Alastair Willis (Music Director, South Bend Symphony Orchestra), Jorge Muniz (Professor of Music, Composition and Theory, Indiana University South Bend) and John Liberatore (Associate Professor of Theory and Composition, University of Notre Dame).


  • Submissions must be received by October 15, 2022, at 11:59 pm EST. Decisions will be announced by November 1, 2022.
  • The selected four composers must provide professional-quality, legible performance materials by November 11, 2022. The South Bend Symphony Orchestra will print the scores and parts of digital submissions.

Performance Vision

  • On January 8, 2023, the performance will take place at the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center at Notre Dame University. Each piece will receive two performances. Before the first performance, each composer will give a spoken introduction of their piece. After all four pieces have been played once, the Symphony will play them a second time in a different order, with projection design that will be mutually agreed on with our projection designer.


About the South Bend Symphony Orchestra

Embarking on the 90th season, the South Bend Symphony Orchestra is the region’s only professional orchestra and is committed to engaging the community in all it does. In addition to being recognized by the National Endowment for the Arts and other state and local arts funding organizations, the South Bend Symphony Orchestra is the recipient of the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County’s 2019 Leighton Award for Nonprofit Excellence, which recognizes the best-run nonprofit organization in St. Joseph County, Indiana.