2024 ISJAC Commission: Fundamental Freedoms

Commission Prize – $2,500


A World Premier Performance at the 2024 Jazz Composers’ Symposium at Vanderbilt University


A $500 Registration/Travel Stipend to Attend the Jazz Composers’ Symposium


Through this commission opportunity, ISJAC is delighted to offer yet another creative opportunity for our members, while strongly reaffirming our commitment to social justice, inclusivity, and equal opportunity.  

Eligibility:  The commission is open to all women jazz composers regardless of age or nationality.* Eligibility is inclusive to transgender and non-binary applicants. Prior winners are not eligible. There is no application fee; but all applicants must be full (paid) members of ISJAC.   To join, please visit www.isjac.org  

*Please be aware that if the commission recipient is not a US citizen, the prize amount may be different owing to governmental fees and taxes.

The work:  The newly composed piece should be no longer than 8 minutes and scored for any instrumentation of 10 or more individuals made up from the members of a standard big band – 5/4/4/PBGD (woodwind doubles are allowed).  Soloists or instrumentation outside of this MUST be provided by the composer for the performance at their own expense. Please recognize this limitation is observed so that the piece may be performed at a Symposium with the resident jazz ensemble.

Application Process:  

  • Project Narrative – Please explain in a few paragraphs (300 words or fewer) how your work will address our theme of “Fundamental Freedoms.” “Fundamental Freedoms” refers to the basic rights and liberties that are considered essential to the functioning of a just and democratic society.
  • Work Sample – Each application should include a PDF score along with an mp3 recording of a previous work that demonstrates their capacity to complete this commission effectively.


All applications must be received by Oct. 14th, 2023.  No late applications will be considered.  Notification of the recipient of the commission will be made in early December 2023.

ISJAC affirms its strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion through its prize and commission programs. The Owen Prize, Prize for Emerging Black Composers, and Fundamental Freedoms Commission strive to promote the recognition and engagement of individuals of diverse backgrounds, identities, and abilities, and embrace diverse perspectives in the field of jazz composition and arranging.

We strongly encourage the submission of applications from members of groups typically underrepresented in awards programming and within the jazz composition and arranging community at large. 

Link to Application (Viewable by Members Only) 

The application deadline has passed.