Young Composer Showcase

The Young Composer Showcase spotlights young jazz composers, giving students an opportunity to have an original composition recognized and performed at an International level.

JEN membership required to be eligible. 

JEN is committed to representing and cultivating diversity in all areas of its operation which includes, but is not limited to its staff, board members, volunteers, presenters, clinicians, performers and audiences. This commitment is present in all programs. We are seeking and encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply for the Young Composer Showcase.

$25 applicaton fee

Click below to access application

Applications Closed

Photo by René Huemer

General Information
Application Requirements

Applications Closed

Applications open again

March 15, 2022 – September 15, 2022

JEN Members

Here are some great reasons to apply:

  • ALL entrants will receive written comments from the professional reviewers.
  • A total of 4-6 student compositions will be chosen for performance at the JEN Young Composer Showcase Presentation during the annual conference.
  • The selected composers will receive a travel stipend to attend the conference and hear a professional performance of their music. (if applicable)
  • All YCS winners will also participate in mentoring sessions before or during the conference with some of the best jazz composers working today!

JEN Members

March 15 – September 15

Application Deadline is September 15th 11:59pm EST 

  • Application Forms and Criteria are available online until closed.
  • Application requires JEN membership and payment of a $25 Application Fee in order to be considered.
    • If you are a student in financial need, you can ask an advocate to send a letter on your behalf requesting to waive the application fee.
      Subject line: Request to waive Young Composer Showcase Application Fee
  • Awards will be presented during the Annual JEN Conference.
  • Notification to chosen composers as applicable as early as November 1.
  • Previous year’s selected composers are ineligible to participate.

Application Requirements

  • JEN membership.  Current Membership in JEN is required in order to complete the application process.  Not a member?  Click to JOIN JEN prior to attempting to pay the application fee or to complete the application form. You may join as a JEN Full Individual, eJEN, or yJEN (if age is applicable) member.
  • Prepare your materials to complete the application process.
  • Apply. Complete the JEN Young Composer Showcase Application Form.
  • $25 Application Fee – An invoice will be sent to your email upon completion of the application form.
    • If you are a student in financial need, you can ask an advocate to send a letter on your behalf requesting to waive the fee.
      Subject line: Request to waive Young Composer Showcase Application Fee
  • Your completed application and files will be submitted to the review committee upon receipt of payment.

About the

Young Composer Showcase

Video produced by Mojo Factory Productions

Participation Rules

Applications must be received online by 11:59pm (EST) September 15th. 


Age Group Categories


  • Group 1 – MS/HS (ages 14 through 18) as of September 1st in the current year application is being made.
  • Group 2 – Undergraduate (age 18 and above) as of September 1st, in the year application is being made and enrolled as an undergraduate student for a minimum of six semester hours.
  • Group 3 – Graduate (age 21) and above as of September 1st, in the year application is being made and enrolled as a graduate student for a minimum of six semester hours.
  • Group 4 – Post-Graduate (age 21-30) as of September 1st, in the year application is being made and has completed graduation from an accredited college or university graduate-level music program.


Composition Categories

Students may enter only one original composition in only one of the categories.

  • Small Instrumental Group (2 to 9 instruments, maximum 7 minutes in length)
  • Large Instrumental Group (10 instruments and above, maximum 7 minutes in length)
  • Instrumental Group with vocal solo (maximum 5 minutes in length)
  • Vocal Group (4 – 8 voices a cappella or with rhythm section, maximum 5 minutes in length)



Composition Description

Compositions submitted for the Showcase are expected to be in a jazz or jazz-related style.
Composition, by definition herein, implies an original work. (Arrangements of other copyrighted works are not eligible for submission).

Instrumentation may be varied, small to large, to include any combination of the following:

  • 5 Saxophones (AATTB or SATTB – Baritone has the low A.)
  • 4 Trumpets (Flugelhorns optional choice)
  • 4 Trombones (one of which is a bass trombone)
  • Piano, Bass, Drums and Guitar (standard equipment and amplifiers provided)
  • 8 Voices (SATB, individually mic’d)
  • Up to 3 additional Latin Percussionists
    Percussion instruments available for use and provided by JEN for the conference performance will include: 1 vibraphone; 1 set of congas; 1 set of timbales
    Additional Latin instruments become the responsibility of the composer.

Conference Attendance

Chosen composers will be notified by Mid November or sooner, if possible.

  • Selected works may be performed at the Annual JEN Conference.
  • Composers whose works are selected for performance at the upcoming annual conference are EXPECTED TO ATTEND.
  • A travel/housing stipend will be awarded to each selectee.
  • From the stipend, JEN will book each selectee’s travel and housing.
  • Award selectees under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a chaperone.
  • A complimentary conference registration badge will be given each selected composer, plus one additional conference badge for the legal chaperone accompanying a student under the age of 18 at conference time.
  • Additional Chaperone Registration badges may be purchased online under the Registration tab under Conference as needed, once accepted.
  • Applicants wishing to bring a spouse will be expected to purchase a Spouse/Partner Registration for the conference and cover the additional cost of housing for their spouse.
  • The Jazz Education Network reserves all rights of use to any Young Composer Showcase audio and/or video content recorded at the conference, solely for not-for-profit promotional purposes with the JEN organization & initiatives.

Preparing Materials for Submission

You will be asked to submit the following materials:

Photo – A photo of yourself.

  • File should be print quality (high).
  • File types accepted include: jpg, gif, and png.
  • Label your photo file as follows: LastNameFirstNameJENYCSPhoto

Bio – Prepare a short 50-word bio in a doc or pdf format

  • Label your Bio as follows: LastNameFirstNameJENYCSBio

Score – A pdf of your score. File types in any other format will not be accepted.

  • Do NOT upload parts. Parts will be asked for at a later date.
  • Label your score files as follows: LastNameFirstNameJENYCSScore

Audio file – An audio file.

  • File types accepted include: MP3, OGG, M4A, WMA, WAV, AAC, FLAC
  • Label your audio files as follows:LastNameFirstNameJENYCSAudio


Submission Details

Applications must be received online by 11:59pm (EST) September 15th.

  1. JEN Membership is required.

     2. Complete the Young Composer Showcase Application.

 3. Be advised that your application is only complete once the $25 fee is paid.   

If you are a student in financial need, you can ask an advocate to send a letter on your behalf requesting to waive the fee.
Subject line: Request to waive Young Composer Showcase Application Fee

Your application and files will be submitted to the Young Composers Showcase committee upon receipt of payment.

Have questions? Please contact me!

Dr. Ryan Middagh, Young Composer Showcase Coordinator

[email protected]

Photo by Rene Huemer

2021 Young Composer Showcase Selectees


Lola Miller-Henline

San Francisco Conservatory of Music

Large Group with Vocal Solo

Mind Of Its Own

Lola Indigo Miller-Henline’s passion for the freedom and collaboration of jazz and new music are apparent in her artistry as a singer and composer. She writes music that takes on what it means to be a woman in jazz and unexpected subjects such as climate change, mental health, and politics. Her love of jazz is built on a strong classical training. Some of the world-renowned stages she has performed on including SFJazz, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, and San Francisco Symphony Davis Hall. Her compositions have been performed in venues ranging from the SFJAZZ Miner Auditorium to the Holywell Music room at Oxford. Lola’s music weaves together activism and the human experience. Playing alongside and studying with jazz greats such as Carmen Bradford and Warren Wolf has helped her develop a profound appreciation for the expressivity and individuality of jazz. Other mentors include Theo Bleckmann, Clairdee French, Laurie Antonioli, and Jason Hainsworth. She is due to receive a Bachelor of Music at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in their Roots, Jazz, and American Music program in 2023.


Michael Clement

University of North Texas

Large Instrumental Group

Evading Karmacities

Pianist, composer, and educator Michael Clement connects to his listeners through his outstanding versatility and range of musicianship. In addition to being an award-winning classical and jazz pianist, he is an experienced jazz and media composer.

Clement’s breadth and depth of musicianship has earned him slots in the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Academy, the Boysie Lowery Living Jazz Residency, the Rebecca Penneys Piano Festival, and the American Jazz Pianist Competition. His approach to music and pianism has given him diverse opportunities to perform professionally with the Irving Symphony Orchestra, the Rosana Eckert Quartet, and the seven-time Grammy-nominated University of North Texas One O’Clock Lab Band. His playing is featured on the One O’Clock Band’s most recent release, Lab 2019. During his time at the University of North Texas, he was a finalist in the UNT Concerto Competition, and was named the Outstanding Undergraduate Piano Performance Major of the Year.

Clement is currently pursuing a master’s degree in jazz composition and arranging at UNT under the tutelage of Dave Meder and Rich DeRosa. His compositions have been performed by the One O’Clock Lab Band, the Two O’Clock Lab Band, and the U-Tubes (the jazz trombone ensemble).

Katelyn Vincent

Phoenix, Arizona

Large Instrumental Group

Unfinished Business

Kate Vincent is an award-winning composer, vocalist, saxophonist, and educator originally from Laramie, Wyoming. After graduating with her Master’s in Music Composition from Arizona State University in 2019, she taught at Northwest College before deciding to return to Phoenix to pursue a freelance career.

Hatsune Hirakura

Berklee College of Music

Small Instrumental Group

Dear M

Hatsune Hirakua started playing the piano at the age of four. Under the influence of her father playing wood bass, she began to listen to jazz and studied under Mamoru Motooka. She formed a band from elementary school students and appeared in many events, and in 2013, participated in the final live with the youngest piano in the Kobe Next Jazz Competition.

Now a professional pianist, Hatsune has had many performances with multiple bands in the Osaka and Tokyo area, including as a leader with her trio, Hatsune Hirakura Trio. She has been the pianist for Terri Lyne Carrington’s Berklee summer jazz workshop band in 2016. A recent Japan tour with her trio included guest artist Takuya Kuroda on trumpet. Hatsune has played performances at the Bern jazz festival in Switzerland with drummer Ralph Peterson, and has toured the northeast with saxophonist Melissa Aldana.

Hatsune currently studies jazz composition at the Berklee School of Music.

2020 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

  • Nathan Poehlke, University of Oregon — “Feeling Sleepy”
  • Maya Keren, Princeton University – “Wyndmoor”
  • Phillip Ryan Goss, New England Conservatory – “Untitled No. 1”
  • Annie Booth, University of Colorado – “Jolly Beach”
  • Gabriel Severn, Loyalsock Township High School – “Canção Para Fina”
  • Andrew Saliba, San Diego – “Silent Minority”
  • Eri Chichibu, Berklee College of Music – “The Sea – Seven Years Voyage”
    • Paulo Santos, University of Texas Austin – “Twisted Voyage”
    • John Sturino, New York, New York – “Tip City”
    • Yoko Suzuki, Berklee College of Music – “Cat Tricks”

2019 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

  • Bryann Kennard, University of Miami – “Let The Wild Rumpus Start”
  • Martina Liviero, Berklee College of Music – “Pasajeros”
  • Brian Martin, University of Massachussetts – “Lookin’ Forward”
  • Sam Ross, University of Michigan – “Portuguese Bend”
  • Jameson Scriver, Indiana University – “The Good Fight”
  • Elliot Turner, University of Northern Colorado – “What Are You?”
  • Tracy Yang, Berklee College of Music – “Yes and No”
  • HONORABLE MENTION Ethan Moffitt, University of Southern California – “Step by Step”

2018 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click to Meet the 2018 Young Composers and Their Work

  • Lucas Fonseca, Berklee College of Music – “Colloquio”
  • Takumi Kakimoto, Berklee College of Music – “Find Phrygiayn”
  • Kyle Myers, University of North Texas – “Tomorrow Morning”
  • Zachary Rich, University of Northern Colorado – “Community”
  • David Rogers, Vanderbilt University – “Sivan”
  • Gregory Weis, University of Northern Colorado – “Liquid Descent”

2017 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the 2017 Young Composers and Their Work

  • Aida Demoya, Berklee College of Music – “TC For Leo”
  • Anna Jelkéus, University of North Texas – “Above”
  • Heui Lam, Berklee College of Music – “The Unknown Bell”
  • Tobias Meissl, Berklee College of Music – “Deep Tree Fission”
  • Chang Su, University of Northern Colorado – “Forbidden City Garden”
  • Casio Vianna, University of Northern Colorado – “For The Rise Of A New Day”
  • Luca Mendoza, LA Philharmonic – Honorable Mention

2016 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the 2016 Young Composers and Their Work

  • Mike Conrad, University of Northern Colorado – “Gerry’s Timepiece”
  • Andrew D. Herring, Shenandoah University – “27”
  • Nacho González Nappa, Berklee College of Music – “Candombe Juno”
  • Matt Shugert, Indiana University – “Madeline”

2015 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the 2015 Young Composer and Their Work

  • Tom Amend, University of Northern Colorado – “What Do You Say?”
  • Keith Karns, University of North Texas- “The House At The End Of High Street”
  • Chase Morrin, Harvard/NEC – “Three Brahmin”
  • Drew Zaremba, University of North Texas – “Blues For Gabe”

2014 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the 2014 Young Composers and Their Work

  • Lucas Apostleris, University of Massachusetts – “September Again”
  • Enrico Bergamini, Berklee College of Music – “Convergence”
  • Raphael DeLima, Frost School of Music (University of Miami) – “Quebra Cabeças”
  • C. Tyler Dennis, San Francisco, California – “What Would Thad Do?”
  • Aaron Hedenstrom, University of North Texas – “Honeybee”

2013 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the 2013 Young Composers and Their Work

  • Carter Brodkorb, Toronto, Canada
  • Jose Gurria, USC
  • Laila Smith, San Jose, California
  • Dave Stamps, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

2012 Young Composer Showcase Selectees

Click Here to Meet the JEN Young Composers

  • Socrates Garcia, University of Northern Colorado
  • Brett McDonald, Rutgers University
  • Emily Merrell, University of North Texas
  • Tyler Mire, University of North Texas
  • Chase Morrin, Harvard University/New England Conservatory
  • Kate Skinner, University of Northern Colorado