Commonwealth Spirit

For Composers

The second strand of our Commonwealth Project is titled ‘Spirit’. At The People’s Orchestra, we have a long history of performing and recording new works by film composers. We wish to extend this tradition to encompass composers from all members of the Commonwealth, celebrating diversity in music, arts and culture whilst connecting and collaborating around our shared achievement in this project. 

What is ‘Spirit’? 

This project is a competition to create a single sixteen-bar piece over a given bassline, wherein composers from across the Commonwealth will send in their sixteen-bar compositions and the winning entries will end up being part of an international, collaborative piece. There will be one winner chosen from each participating territory, and there is a monetary prize of £100 for the winning composers.  

How do I get involved? 

We need composers to create an sixteen-bar piece in their preferred style, over a provided bassline, so this can be collated into an international, collaborative composition. 

Step 1 

Register interest in Spirit, open from March 2021, to enter the composition. 

Step 2 

Submit your entry in the form of an mp3, score and short blurb about the composition. This will be judged by our panel of experts in the autumn of 2021.  

Step 3 

The winning entry from each commonwealth territory will be notified in November 2021 and asked to create a video recording of their work. This will need to be sent to us by 31st January 2022. 

At this stage, we may also request that you arrange the piece for flexible orchestra scoring/accompaniment, should it be appropriate for the style of the work, so that The People’s Orchestra will be able to perform it live. 

Step 4 

We will compile all of the winning entries into one video to create one long composition (a Commonwealth-wide ‘Anthem’) from all around the globe! You will receive a copy of this in July 2022, to view and share with your community too.  


Composition Guidelines 

Compositions must fulfil the below requirements of entry: 

    - The composition must be exactly sixteen bars long, set to the sixteen-bar bassline we give you.  

    - In order for your work to link to the other compositions seamlessly… 

    - Your sixteen-bar piece must start and end on the tonic 

    - You are not allowed to transpose the key 

    - You may not alter the time signature or given tempo 

    - You can compose for any instrumentation and in any musical style you like.  

    - Please note that winning entries may be asked to arrange their work for flexible orchestral scoring/accompaniment, if appropriate to the composition, so that The People’s Orchestra would be able to perform it live. 

Terms Of Entry: 

    - There is a cash prize of £100 for winning entries, which will be awarded upon receipt of all recordings and scores as requested by The People’s Orchestra.  

    - There is a maximum of one winning entry per commonwealth territory. 

    - By taking part, you consent to us using your composition, video submission, photo and biography for promotional purposes linked to this project.  

    - There are no upper or lower age limits, but if you are under 18 years of age, you must have permission from your parent/guardian when you register to take part.  

    - By taking part, you consent to The People’s Orchestra having full access and rights to use and publish your composition as they see fit.