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Perth Festival: Fire Fanfare

Perth Festival Fan Fare


Imagine hearing a fanfare you wrote being broadcast at venues around Perth during the 2020 Festival! We are currently inviting applications from students aged 15 – 25 to write a short fanfare inspired by the theme of Fire. Instead of the traditional bells that let the audience know it’s time to take their seats, your Fanfare will ring out to start Festival performances.

The Opportunity

James Ledger will mentor selected emerging young composers in one-on-one workshops to refine and develop their compositions into finished Fanfares.

The Fanfares will be performed and recorded by WASO musicians alongside an ensemble of students from UWA Conservatorium of Music and WAAPA School of Music. The recordings will play at venues during Perth Festival, announcing to audience members that it is time to take their seats.

About The Mentor

James Ledger is a world-renowned composer, writing music for a variety of ensembles from solo works to orchestral music, and specialising in composition, harmony and 20th century music history. He has been composer-in-residence with the West Australian, Adelaide and Christchurch (NZ) Symphony Orchestras, the Australian National Academy of Music and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music. James has won APRA Art Music Awards for his violin concerto Golden Years and the orchestral work Chronicles. He is currently Chair of Orchestral Composition at the Conservatorium of Music at the University of Western Australia in composition at the Conservatorium of Music at the University of Western Australia

What is a fanfare?

A fanfare is a short, showy piece of music usually played for a special event. A fanfare announces an expectation and is traditionally played to alert listeners that something important is about to happen.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for four fanfares to play at select venues during Perth Festival. Compositions should be inspired by or respond to the theme of Fire, be original and clearly communicate the message that audiences should begin moving to their seats. They should be dramatic, catchy and distinctive enough to grab and hold attention.

Who: Secondary and University students aged 15 – 25 years

Length: We have a strict maximum length of 20 seconds

How do I apply?

Applicants should submit the following with their application:
• A short score of the composition
• Full orchestration of four bars of the composition
• MP3 recording of composition (using any instrumentation)
• Completed application form

If selected, you must be available to:
(a) attend two one-on-one mentorship workshops, held early and mid-November
(b) complete and deliver the full orchestration of your fanfare by late November
(c) attend the rehearsal and recording (dates TBA)


4 Trumpets, 2 French Horns, 2 Trombones, 1 Bass Trombone, 1 Tuba and 2 Percussion

What is a Short Score?

A short score is a reduction of a work for many instruments to just a few staves. Rather than composing directly in full score, many composers work out some type of short score while they are composing and later expand the complete orchestration. Send us your score using three or four instruments that best suit your composition.

Key dates

Submission deadline: Sunday 20 October 2019
Successful submissions notified: Friday 25 October 2019
Composition workshops: Early & mid-November
Final compositions submitted: Late November 
Recording day: Early December

This program is inspired by Fanfare programs run by Artology and the Royal Opera House.

Presented in partnership with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra, UWA Conservatorium of Music and WAAPA at ECU.

Please read the photography, video, audio and interview release agreement and terms and conditions and before completing the application.