Composer | Orchestrator | Educator
"Mike is one of the most technically accomplished composers I’ve worked with. He is a natural composer and this is reflected in every piece he creates, whether a profound oratorio or a simple arrangement."
-Prof. Phillip Cooke, University of Aberdeen
Commissions are the life blood of new music. It's a win-win situation for both the composer and the commissioning body, in that it provides work for the composer and a brand new piece of music tailor-fit to the performers. I am always looking for new people to write music for, and have had the privilege of being commissioned by public schools, universities, and professional ensembles over the past few years.
I am currently accepting new commissions.
FEES and FUNDING
While I do have my standard fees for difference ensembles, they are flexible to an extent, particularly to music programs in public education. Standard practice is to pay half of the total fee at the time of the formal commission, and the rest upon completion of the project.
One way which is both effective and cost-efficient is to commission by consortium. Simply put, this is when a group of ensembles jointly commission a new work. As all parties share in the fee, everyone ends up paying much less. This is also appealing to me as a composer, in that it means that more people will be performing and hearing my music. Everybody benefits in a big way!
PROCESS and TIME TABLE
The first thing we do as part of a new commission is to discuss what it is exactly you're wanting in the new piece. Ensemble size and their ability level, if any text is to be used and whether it's available for use, how long the piece should be, if the piece will be done for a consortium, etc.
When all the details are established, the fee is then negotiated. Again, my fees are flexible, but the goal is to be fair to both myself as the composer and to you as the performer.
Once the fee is agreed upon, I will send you the formal contract. As soon as I've received the signed copy back I will send you the first of two invoices, and composition will commence!
Though there are several factors that determine how quickly a piece can be completed, I generally ask for about one week of writing per minute of new music. This is subject to change in either direction, depending on anything from ensemble size, the difficulty of the piece, and my current workload. This will all be discussed in the initial conversations.
When the piece is completed, you will receive a PDF of it in your email for you to peruse. If there are any small changes that need to be made, we'll discuss them and I'll make adjustments as necessary. After sending you a revised version, we'll continue the process as necessary until we are both satisfied. You will then receive the full set of sheet music along with the final invoice.
After that, the piece is yours to premiere!
HOW TO COMMISSION
If you are interested in a new piece of music for you or your ensemble, click on the CONTACT menu option and send me a message. I typically reply within 24 hours, unless I'm off traveling or it's on a Sunday. We'll then begin to discuss everything needed to make your new music come to life!