Victor Salvo Music Composition Scholarship 2019

Sponsored in part by
SMP Press at Sheet Music Plus
SF State School of Music
Composers and Schools
and through the generous support of Evelyn Nussenbaum and Fred Vogelstein

SFCMP presents
Victor Salvo Music Composition Scholarship
for high school students in the San Francisco Bay Area
Application due: Mon, Apr 1, 2020

San Francisco Contemporary Music Players is pleased to announce our 2020 Victor Salvo Music Composition Scholarship for high school students. One San Francisco Bay Area high school music student will win 5 hours of mentoring sessions with an advising professional composer [TBD], a private score reading by San Francisco Contemporary Music Players of the student’s work, feedback from the professional musicians, and a video recording of the reading session.


Students can apply by submitting a video (2-min max) and a copy of a score that is in progress.  The video will describe the motivation behind the music as well as provide an idea for where the music is going and why the student would like to take part in this educational program.  Through five mentoring sessions, the draft score will be developed into an excerpt, a section, or a full piece that is ready for a reading session with a professional ensemble. The composer [TBD] will assist the student with the development of the piece, notation, and print preparation. The scholarship panel is looking for a student with a passion to compose and a desire to learn.


  • The score must be written for 3 instruments from our ensemble: Visit the following link to learn about the Players:
  • The duration of the draft score must be a minimum of 30 seconds and no longer than 15 minutes.
  • The score can be any genre of music e.g. rock, classical, jazz, etc.
  • The score must be unpublished and never performed by a professional ensemble.
  • A student may include an additional part for electronics; however, if a student writes for electronics, s/he must provide the equipment for performance and perform the equipment him or herself. 


  • 5 mentoring sessions with the advising composer [TBD] during the period of June – Aug, 2020. The advising composer will be selected in advance for this season’s particular project and focus. Mentoring sessions will be a combination of online and in-person.
  • A professional score reading session with SFCMP in the late summer/fall of 2020.
  • Feedback of the performed piece by the advising composer and the musicians.
  • A video recording of the reading session.
  • A pair of season tickets to SFCMP’s upcoming season concerts. 


  • Students enrolled in high school during the spring term of 2020.
  • Students whose permanent address is in the San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland, CA or Sacramento-Roseville Combined Statistical Areas
  • Students available for 5 hours of mentoring sessions during the time period of July-Sep 2020. Sessions will be a combination of online and in person.
  • Students available for a reading session in late summer/fall 2020, in person, in San Francisco, and with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players.

April 1, 2020 at midnight PST. Winners will be notified by mid-April.

Send an email to with the following information:

Please provide the following information in the email:

  • Use the Subject line “Scholarship 2020 entry”
  • Address the email to “Dear Scholarship Committee”
  • Provide applicant’s information: student’s full name, grade level,  phone number, email address
  • Provide the name and phone number of the person giving the recommendation.
  • Provide the name, email address and phone number of one of the student’s guardian(s)

Please attach the following information (in .PDF format):

  • Attach the score (duration min. 30 sec and no longer than 15 min)
  • Attach one letter of recommendation
  • Attach one high-res image of you (informal is okay!)
  • Attach a bio (max 150 words)
  • Attach one letter from a guardian stating approval of the mentoring sessions and approval to submit the video
  • Attach a video or provide a link to the video (max 2 min.)

For questions about this application please contact Lisa Oman, Executive Director at 415-633-8802 or email

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

(Q) Is it possible to submit a draft score for piano or another instrument and transcribe it during the mentoring sessions?

(A) Yes, but not encouraged. Try writing for the trio and the advising composer will help you develop the piece.


San Francisco Contemporary Music Players (SFCMP) is a unionized large ensemble of virtuosic musicians based out of San Francisco, California who nourish the creation and dissemination of contemporary music through world-class, contemporary music performances, commissions, and community and education programs. SFCMP features the work of iconic and emerging composers while shining a spotlight on California artists. SFCMP performs the music of composers from across cultures and stylistic traditions. San Francisco Contemporary Music Players is the most longstanding, continuously performing new music ensemble outside the East Coast.

SFCMP is one of the most active ensembles in the United States dedicated to contemporary music and play an important role in the regional and national cultural landscape. SFCMP has contributed greatly to the art form: SFCMP is a 2018 awardee of the Fromm Foundation Ensemble Prize, and a ten-time winner of the CMA/ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming. SFCMP has performed more than 1,200 works by over 600 composers; Over 300 of these performances have been premieres, and the organization has commissioned some 80 major works from composers such as John Adams, John Cage, Earle Brown, Olly Wilson, Michael Gordon, Du Yun, Myra Melford, and Julia Wolfe. SFCMP has been presented by leading cultural festivals and concert series including San Francisco Performances, Los Angeles Monday Evening Concerts, Cal Performances, the Stern Grove Festival, the Festival of New American Music at CSU Sacramento, the Ojai Festival, and France’s prestigious MANCA Festival.

Previous scholarship winners and their advisors

2019 Pending
2018 Nick Main advising composer, Kurt Rohde
2017 Wyatt Cannon advising composer, Belinda Reynolds
2016 W. Alyssa Deocampo advising composer, Ralph Burnett

Victor Salvo Music Composition Scholarship 2018