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IDRS 50 for 50 Commissioning Project: Grants

2023 Commissioning Grants

Three Commissioning Grants of $1,000 have been awarded to 2023 Conference recital applicants whose accepted proposals included the commissioning and premiere of at least one new work for a double reed instrument(s); this money must be used to assist in the fulfillment of the composer’s fee. These grants are given towards the commissioning of composers who are women, Black, Indigenous, people of color (Latinx, Asian, Middle-Eastern, etc), ethnic minorities, and/or gender non-conforming.

2023 Commissioning Grant Winners

Performer: Monserrat García-Campos

Composer: Jimena Contreras

Commissioned work: “Cate de mi corazón” for oboe and audiovisual media

Monserrat García-CamposMonserrat García-Campos
Jimena ContrerasJimena Contreras

Jimena Contreras

Composer and music producer graduated from the Music Faculty at the National and Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and NYU Steinhardt. Founder of Archway Studios, she specializes in the composition and production of music for concert, film, television and video games.

She currently writes music for Channel 22 in Mexico, which is devoted mainly to broadcast art and culture in the metropolitan area. She has made original music for short films, feature films and documentaries in collaboration with different film production companies, producers, and independent directors such as Licano’s Films, Cámara Carnal Films, Darkuss Films, ElementProductions and Hopscotch Digital, among others. Several film productions with her music have been selected and awarded at various Festivals of Cinema in Mexico and around the world. Her music for her films is also available on the YouTube platform Audio Library.

She is currently part of the collective of composers and performers called “Las Montoneras “, where she composes and produces concert music, she is also the conductor and producer of the radio program “Nada Clásicas” on Opus 94, an IMER station (Radio Mexican Institute).

“Cate de mi corazón” for oboe/ english horn and electronics.

“Agua pasa por mi casa, cate de mi corazón”, is a popular Mexican riddle where the answer is Aguacate (Avocado) taught to me by my grandma along with other child games and rhymes when I was a little girl, going for visits to her house in Zacapu, a little town in Michoacan. Down there, we had a big Avocado three, with fruit so big and heavy, I remember one time it made a dent in my mom’s car. Avocado has always been part of the land there, but with global expansion, it became something else. This piece will have memories from my childhood and it will also discuss the problems with the irregular expansion of avocado farms and the problems that causes to the people and land in Michoacan, Mexico”.

Performer: Su Chee Ng

Composer: Adeline Wong

Commissioned work: Sembilan (2022) for oboe and 2 percussion

Su Chee NgSu Chee Ng
Adeline WongAdeline Wong

Adeline Wong

Singapore-based Malaysian composer Adeline Wong’s music has often been described as bold, with textural energy and kaleidoscopic colours. Adeline’s recent music has aimed for distillation of musical material by concentrating on economy and exploring the material from every possible perspective. Her works have been performed by Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Belgian National Orchestra, Orkest de ereprijs, Bang on A Can, amongst others.

Graduating from the Eastman School of Music (USA) and Royal College of Music (UK), Adeline is a Senior Lecturer in Composition at the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, National University of Singapore. She is the President of the Malaysian Composers Collective, a platform that promotes Malaysian contemporary classical music and the Artistic Director of Free Hand Malaysian Contemporary Composers Piano Festival in 2019 and 2022. Her recent engagements include invitations to the Francophonie Festival 2021, jury for 2021 AMAT International Competition for Women in Italy, 2022 Asian Composers League Festival in New Zealand.

Sembilan (2022) for oboe and 2 percussion

Sembilan is named after one of the states in the west coast of peninsular Malaysia, Negeri Sembilan (translated as “nine districts”). Encapsulating its nine districts, my work consists of nine small sections which forms the overall structure of the piece. Sembilan shares a similar instrumentation profile to the traditional instruments of the caklempong and serunai, utilising hanging gongs, amglocken, vibraphone, skin drums and the oboe from the Western instruments. Written for three performers, the performers represent the 3 pillars of Minangkabau society that build and maintain the integrity of customs and culture, namely: i) Religious figures, ii) Scholars, and iii) Ancestors.

Sembilan is centred upon and revolves around the relationships between the three performers.

A distinctive architectural feature in rural Negeri Sembilan is the buffalo horn design, predominantly found on the rooftops of traditional Minangkabau homes. The buffalo horn design plays a significant part in the composition heard in the curved shaped melodies of the oboe and at the end of the piece where the ensemble gently rises to reach the peak of Sembilan.

Performer: Jo Anne Sukumaran

Composer: Avik Chari

Commissioned work: Little Islands for bassoon and electronics

Jo Anne SukumaranJo Anne Sukumaran
Avik ChariAvik Chari

Avik Chari

Avik Chari is a composer and sound designer obsessed with creating interactive media and music for visuals. He embraces the use of sound design in complementing acoustic instruments and telling non-linear musical stories. His latest works focus on ambience and space, taking a calm, meditative approach to rhythm, with pieces such as ‘Senescence’ and ‘i’ll be there for you’. His music has been performed by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Transient Canvas, K口U, Morse Percussion, Nanyang Collective, Eureka Ensemble and the Boston Conservatory Choruses, used alongside visual media by organizations such as ArkInvest, Asian Civilisations Museum and National University of Singapore as well as in video games such as ‘Covidopoly’ and ‘Assemble This’. Avik has been featured on the Straits Times and the Singapore Symphony’s Bravissimo! magazine. Avik studied at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee under Tina Tallon and Felipe Lara, where he was awarded the Roger Sessions Memorial award for composition. With a keen eye for notation and music engraving, he also leads Liria Music Prep, a music preparation service, while working as an orchestral librarian at the Singapore Symphony. At the moment, he is especially interested in creating more interactive and immersive forms audio-visual content in the virtual space, and recently worked with Pluritopia’s Cloud Studios to create music for the metaverse – all as an excuse to spend more time upgrading his beautiful Minecraft home.

Little Islands for bassoon and electronics

“Little Islands” is a collaborative composition by Singaporean composer Avik Chari and bassoonist Jo Anne Sukumaran that explores the theme of migration and the search for a sense of home. Jo Anne’s personal experiences of living in Singapore and New York form the foundation of the piece, which takes listeners on a musical journey that juxtaposes the unique soundscapes of these two island cities.

The composition blends classical and contemporary music to create a fresh perspective on the idea of home, reflecting the ever-changing nature of the world we live in. Field recordings are used to showcase the cultural and sonic diversity of these two metropolises, capturing their unique ambient, natural, and machine sounds. Through little islands, Avik and Jo Anne aim to celebrate the human experience of migration while highlighting the complexities of finding a sense of belonging in an ever-evolving world.


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Congratulations to the following 2021 winners of the International Double Reed Society’s “50 for 50” commissioning grants!

Jenni Brandon: Places We Are From for oboe/bassoon, oboe/saxophone, or saxophone/bassoon and piano

Premiered by 2021 IDRS artists Teodora Pejasinovic Proud and Javier Rodriguez

Places We Are From, a new work by Jenni Brandon, explores the idea of identity and where we come from both geographically, physically, and spiritually. This unique exploration is reflected in the make-up of the 3 different instrumentation options for this work (oboe/bassoon/piano, oboe/saxophone/piano, saxophone/bassoon/piano), using these combinations to tell stories of joy, hope, frustration, and perseverance. The colors and combinations in each version reflect a vision of discovering who we are in unprecedented times and finding happiness in the journey.

Jenni Brandon
Javier Rodriguez & Teodora Pejašinović Proud

Luis Fernando Amaya: Pregunta No.4: Quimera for solo bassoon

Premiered by 2021 IDRS artist Ben Roidl-Ward

The pieces I call “Preguntas” (Questions) are sonic, emotional, and intellectual investigations of a particular topic that’s very important to me. In “Pregunta no.4: Quimera”, we delved into the chimeric qualities of an imaginary landscape that we got to discover rather than invent. In this landscape, like in non-imaginary ones, even the most contrasting sub-climates are interconnected and interdependent. Composing this piece was, for both Ben and me, a personal exploration of the subtle complexities of bassoon sounds and of the different bridges or connections that can be found between them.

Luis Fernando Amaya
Ben Roidl-Ward

Tawnie Olson: Perfectly Logical for bassoon and looper pedal

Premiered by 2021 IDRS artist Rachael Elliott

All of us make odd decisions, or arrive at false beliefs, while believing ourselves to be “perfectly logical.” This piece similarly follows its own logical structural journey, but travels a bit too far and lands in the “wrong” place. This process may or may not be evident to the listener – just as our own motivated reasoning is sometimes perceptible to us, and sometimes not. Perfectly Logical was composed for Rachael Elliott and commissioned by the IDRS.

Tawnie Olson
Rachael Elliott
These three new works were featured during the 2021 Second Annual Virtual Symposium.

Congratulations to the following 2022 winners of the International Double Reed Society’s “50 for 50” commissioning grants!

Molly Joyce: Duality for bassoon and violin

Premiered by 2022 IDRS artist Dyad
Leah Kohn, bassoon
Niv Ashkenazi, violin

Molly Joyce’s work is concerned with disability as a creative source. Using discussions between the composer and Dyad (Leah Kohn, bassoon and Niv Ashkenazi, violin) about what it is like navigating the music industry with a physical disability, this new commission is themed around the social model of disability and perception as a barrier to accessibility. This new work will be premiered as part of a chamber recital of new music for bassoon and violin, furthering Dyad’s mission of continuing to build a body of repertoire for this instrumentation.

Molly Joyce, Composer
Leah Kohn, Bassoon
Niv Ashkenazi, Violin

Minor R. Estrada: La Conquista”, trío for oboe, bassoon and piano

Premiered by 2022 IDRS artists:
Luis Miguel De León, oboe
Telma Díaz, bassoon
Alfonso Hernández, piano

We all have internal struggles; our “inner demons”. We live in a struggle where there is always something that prevents us from realizing our dreams, and we do not realize that it is us, ourselves , who dictate those limits. This work explores that struggle between “what you want” and “what you can” until achieving the “conquest” of that desire.

Minor R. Estrada, Composer
Luis Miguel De León, Oboe
Telma Díaz, Bassoon
Alfonso Hernández, Piano

Althea Talbot-Howard: Hagia Sophia

Premiered by 2022 IDRS artists:
Kathleen Carter Bell, oboe
Conor Bell, bassoon
Stephen Innis, piano

Hagia Sophia, a new work for English Horn/Oboe*, Bassoon & Piano, intersects with two other works by Althea Talbot-Howard due to be heard at Boulder 2022.  Like Troparion, it will feature Greek Orthodox chant. Like Rievaulx, it will tell the story of an iconic church building.  Hagia Sophia was the world’s largest church for one thousand years, until the completion of Seville Cathedral in 1507.  Standing on the edge of Europe – a rock in the fast-moving current of time – it looks out, across the Bosphorus, at Asia Minor.
*Precise instrumentation TBC.

Althea Talbot-Howard, Composer

Kathleen Carter Bell, Oboe

Conor Bell, Bassoon

Stephen Innis, Piano

These three new works will be featured during the 2022 51st conference in Boulder, Colorado.