The American Viola Society announces the first biennial Maurice Gardner Composition Competition. The well known and prolific Mr. Gardner (1909-2002) was closely identified with the AVS, and composed extensively for the viola as a solo instrument. Among the artists who have commissioned works from Maurice Gardner are Jaime Laredo, Oscar Shumsky, Paul Neubauer, and the Muir, Miro, Miami, Ying and Pacifica quartets. His music has been performed throughout the world and garnered prizes and commissions from such institutions as Meet the Composer, Chamber Music America, The Barlow Foundation and The William Primrose Archives.

The mission of the Competition is to identify and promote important new works for the viola, and to honor Mr. Gardner’s legacy. The winner will receive a $2,000 cash prize and travel funds to attend the premiere performance at the 38th International Viola Congress, to be held June 16-20, 2010 at the College Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The AVS invites all those who love the viola to become a supporter of the Maurice Gardner Composition Competition, and a commissioner of exciting new repertoire for our instrument. Donors will be listed in the special premiere performance program, and special patron seating and an invitation to an exclusive reception with the composer and performer(s) following the premiere. As a special “thank you,” all donors of $100 or more will receive an autographed copy of the winning score. All donations to the AVS are tax deductible as allowed by current law.

Help the American Viola Society make this new competition a reality!

The entry date for the Maurice Gardner Viola Competition has passed, but check back for winner information and dates for the next competition.