Each spring, PARMA Recordings holds the Student Composer Competition as a means of furthering our commitment to the next generation of great composers. The competition is open to current students of composition under the age of 30; the outpouring of submissions which we get yearly is an exciting indication of a generation of boundless talent on the horizon.
Each year, we assemble a group of composers and performers from the PARMA family to coalesce a list of the 10 best from all of the submissions to be included in our yearly anthology. This anthology is made available to anyone, anywhere, free of charge, in the hopes of shining a spotlight on the future of contemporary classical music. The anthologies from the past 2 years are available here.
Out of the 10 pieces which were picked for inclusion in the 2014 PARMA Anthology of Music, we chose one Grand Prize Winner to be awarded an additional prize. This year, University of Texas student Michael Mikulka was awarded the honor of having his piece To Throw performed live on stage at the main event of the 2014 PARMA Music Festival by the Redline Brass Quintet.
Michael is currently pursuing his DMA in Composition and is active as a player in the UT Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, New Music Ensemble, and Horn Choir. He is also the founder and conductor of the Vine Orchestra, who held a call for scores under 6 seconds in length in late 2013 and played 52 of the over 150 submissions live in concert in December. He is also founder of www.newbandmusic.com, a website which offers a free service for emerging composers to self-publish their wind ensemble pieces.
Congratulations to Michael and all of the other PARMA Student Composer Competition participants! Keep an eye out for the 2014 PARMA Anthology of Music later this year.