Thursday, June 13, 2024

The Symphonic Jazz Orchestra Announces 8th Annual George Duke Commissioning Prize for New Orchestral Score Blending Jazz and Classical Music

Submission Deadline for $5k prize is August 15, 2023

*The Symphonic Jazz Orchestra, led by music director and SJO founder Mitch Glickman is pleased to announce the 8th Annual George Duke Commissioning Prize Competition.

The competition established in 2002 now honors the legacy of the late legendary keyboardist, composer and producer – and former Symphonic Jazz Orchestra (SJO) Co-Music Director, George Duke who passed in 2013, and resumes this year following a hiatus due to the Covid pandemic.

The George Duke Commissioning Prize Competition is open to all composers, with a submission deadline of Aug. 15, 2023. The SJO Music Advisory Board, whose members include some of the jazz world’s most honored musicians, notably: Billy Childs, John Clayton, Joseph Conlan, Peter Erskine, Christian McBride, Bob Mintzer and Ernie Watts will select the winning composer whose work will be premiered in concert by the SJO and entered into the catalog of symphonic jazz commissions.

To date, the competition has resulted in eighteen new works. Past winners include Alan Chan, Scott Routenberg, G. Patrick Gandy, Daniel Szabo, Remy Le Boeuf, Jihye Lee and Christopher Zuar.

George Duke Prize
George Duke

Mitch Glickman, SJO music director and founder stated: “We are excited to resume the competition and select a new composer to commission in George Duke’s honor. George embodied our mission, and this is always a special way to honor his legacy.”

Created in 2002, the 68-member SJO is a unique hybrid ensemble dedicated to blending the worlds of jazz and classical music through its commissioning, performing, and educational programs. The ensemble has performed throughout Southern California with leading guest artists including Dave Grusin, Christian McBride, Raul Midon, Lee Ritenour, Luciana Souza, The Yellowjackets, Chris Brubeck, Miguel Zenon, Keyon Harrold, and George Duke.

To apply for the Symphonic Jazz Orchestra’s George Duke Commissioning Prize, please visit or call 310-876-8130.

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