The Challenge

The National Young Composers Challenge is open to young musicians ages 13 to 18 who are U.S. residents.

The Challenge is simple. First, you write your own composition for small ensemble (2 to 6 instruments) or full orchestra. Then, a panel of judges chooses the top three orchestral and top three ensemble compositions to be performed and recorded by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra at the NYCC Composium. The Composium for the 2019 competition will be held at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Orlando, Florida.


Because of health concerns for our young composers and their families, musicians, judges and audience, the Composium originally scheduled for Sunday, April 19, 2020 has been postponed until April of 2021.

If you wish to submit a score for the 2022 Composium:

The National Young Composers Challenge will continue accepting scores until October 1, 2021 for the 2022 Composium. To be eligible, entrants must be U.S. residents and be between the ages of 13 and 18 years at the time of submission.


At the Composium, each winning orchestral composer will be awarded $1000 and each winning ensemble composer will be awarded $500.

PLUS! Each winner will receive a professional recording of their composition.

2019 Finalists

Each year the National Young Composers Challenge receives a large number of submissions from every corner of the United States. The sophistication and quality of the scores has continued to grow each year. Because of the difficulty of picking only a few winners in each category, the judges also announce the list of finalists from which the winning scores will be selected. Each one of these composers deserves recognition as a winner, but unfortunately only a few scores can be selected from the finalists as winners.

To view the list of 2019 finalists, click here.

2019 Winners

The National Young Composers Challenge is excited to announce the winners of the 2019 NYCC challege. From the finalists, the judges have selected the following compositions to be performed at the 2021 Composium. The winners are listed below in alphabetical order. This order does not imply relative ratings.


Rainfall Through Windshields - Joey Baroco - Pensacola, FL - age 16

Snowfall in Spring - Gabriel Fynsk - Brooklyn, NY - age 18

Needles to the Ground - Jane Meenaghan - Los Angeles, CA - age 18

Full Orchestra

Assembly for Summer Voices - Ian Barnett - Key Biscayne, FL - age 15

The Sailor's Tale - Jayden Tiemann - Princeton, IL - age 15

Battle of the Orchestra - Brendan Weinbaum - Atlanta, GA - age 17


If you have a question regarding the National Young Composers Challenge, you can contact us at mail@ followed by


The National Young Composers Challenge is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization supported by grants and in-kind donations from the University of Central Florida, Rollins College, Full Sail University, Timucua Arts Foundation, and the Goldman Charitable Foundation.