Call for Proposals: Recording Project - Composing for Soprano or Mezzo Soprano and Piano

Deadline: Nov 8, 2023

The Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra (SPO) is issuing a call for proposals for early career and advanced student composers wanting to write a song for a soprano or mezzo soprano and piano. Four composers will be selected. This is the seventh edition of the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Generation Composer’s Project. 

The singers for this project include soprano Maghan McPhee and mezzo soprano Danielle MacMillan. Each singer will rehearse and professionally record two songs. The four songs will be posted on the SPO’s YouTube channel. One or more of the songs will be included on a SPO commercial album, using the Toronto label, Akashic Classics and distributed by Universal.

During the writing process, each composer will be paired with one of two singers and a mentor composer. These two musicians will be a support and resource: this will include advice on writing the composition, vocal writing, notation, and score/part preparation. Composers will be invited to workshops on vocal writing and aspects of career development. Composers will be supported and advised by SPO music director Ronald Royer. 

Completed pieces will be rehearsed and then presented to the composers in a workshop session. The final compositions will be recorded in 2024.

Composers can also apply for the SPO’s New Generation Film Composer’s Project. If a composer applies for and gets accepted into both programs, they will need to choose one. Composers will not be able to participate in both programs in the same year.

This project is open to any composer who meets the eligibility criteria, with no more than 10 composers being selected.N


  • The project is open to early-career and student composers who are Canadian citizens and permanent residents, aged 18 to 35.  
  • The program is available to Canadian composers, who can be involved in-person or online.

About the Program:

  • Composers will compose for soprano and piano or for mezzo soprano and piano.
  • The maximum duration for the individual pieces to be composed is 5 minutes.
  • An important aspect of this project is to involve the selected composers in musical collaboration with the performers, composer mentors and SPO administrators. 
  • Selected composers will participate in two composer mentorship meetings, at least one meeting with their singer, two vocal workshops and possibly the rehearsal process. Additional mentorship sessions can possibly be arranged. Composers are encouraged to listen to the two singers involved in the project via their websites (see below for links)
  • A vocal workshop with Maghan McPhee and Danielle MacMillan will take place online in November 2023, date TBA.
  • The composer’s songs will be workshopped by the two singers in early 2024, date TBA.
  • Selected completed songs will be recorded between March and May 2024.

The co-ordinator for this project is Daniel Mehdizadeh, SPO Composer-in-Residence Emeritus. SPO Music Director, Ronald Royer and the current Composer-in-Residence, Ted Runcie, will be involveda


  • Eligible composers should submit the following to be considered: 

    • Short written proposal (350-word max.): Include your artistic objectives with the piece, your interest in the project, composing for vocalist and piano, and working with the SPO. Composers can write their own words, use public domain material, work with a lyricist or use copyrighted material. If using copyrighted material, the composer will be responsible for obtaining permission and for any related fees. If selected, your piece can deviate from this proposal.
    • CV or Resume: Include a PDF file focusing on your composition activity. Include your contact information, including an email address, on your CV.If working with a lyricist, include their CV and corresponding information.
    • 2 sample scores: PDFs of 2 recent scores. You are not required to submit songs for soprano or mezzo soprano and piano but including at least one piece that includes one or more singers is required.
    • 2 samples of song/choral words – If working with a lyricist, have samples of their work is required.
    • 2 sample recordings: Links to streaming audio/video for the 2 scores submitted. MP3 recordings of the 2 submitted scores (live or MIDI recordings are acceptable). Please ensure that the recording is available for one month following the deadline.

Complete application below: 

This form is currently closed for submissions.