Commissioning can be an exciting, deeply meaningful, and emotionally profitable venture for an ensemble of any type or genre.  It is my personal goal to make it so for any commissioning party I collaborate with. 

Often the most pressing questions for ensembles desiring to commission a new work are ones of practicality and finance.  NewMusic USA has a deep-dive guide into the commissioning process including Rights and Resources, that you can access here.  I do not necessarily adhere to their recommendations of fees and practices in their Basic Guide, though many composers do.  Quite often, through negotiation with the commissioning party, I find ways to fit rightly within their budget (which could potentially be below NewMusic's recommendations for commissioning fees).  It is most convenient for the commissioning party to approach with a realistic idea of what they are financially capable of given their financial state, and things can move from there based upon the context of the new piece they would like created.

Text for a new choral or vocal work is perhaps the most important element in the commissioning process.  As all music is derived from the inspiration of the chosen text, it is imperative that I retain the right to select the text for the new piece.  This is after much discussion of the context provided by the commissioning party.  Options of texts that fit within agreed upon parameters may also be provided.

Timelines and deadlines are negotiated by both parties, and many composers 'book' years in advance.  While I do indeed do this, I am also open to shorter timeline collaborations if the timing and context is appropriate.  It is most assuredly worth speaking about.

Questions, articulations, clarifications or commission inquiries can be sent to: eric@ericwilliambarnum.com