Position Title: Composition Fellow


Position Overview

The Chelsea Symphony is seeking a talented and dedicated composer for the position of Composition Fellow. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to showcase their skills through the performance of a previously-composed work in the 2023-2024 season, as well as the opportunity to compose a new work for the 2024-2025 season. The Composition Fellow will collaborate closely with the artistic director, guest conductors, and the talented musicians of The Chelsea Symphony. This position is unpaid and requires active participation in at least four concert cycles throughout the year. Active participation in the organization's activities, including rehearsals and concerts, is a key requirement of this position.


  • Performance of Previously-Composed Work: The One-Year Composition Fellow will have the privilege of having one of their previously-composed works performed by The Chelsea Symphony during the 2023-2024 season. This includes score preparation, collaboration with musicians, and attendance at rehearsals and performances.
  • Composition of New Work: The Composition Fellow will have the exciting opportunity to compose a new work to be performed by The Chelsea Symphony in the 2024-2025 season. This includes discussions with the music director and musicians, score preparation, and collaboration throughout the creative process.
  • Participation in Cycles: Perform as an ensemble instrumentalist and/or performance librarian in at least 4 cycles as appropriate with on your performance background.
  • Professional Development: Participate in mentorship sessions with the music director, guest composers, and musicians to enhance compositional skills, gain insights into artistic processes, and receive constructive feedback for growth.


  • Education and Experience: Previous training and experience in composing for ensembles, preferably orchestras, is highly desirable. Demonstrated excellence in composition and innovative musical ideas will be given significant consideration.
  • Musical Proficiency: Strong musical and theoretical skills, including a deep understanding of orchestral repertoire, instrumentation, and compositional techniques. The ability to effectively communicate musical ideas to performers is crucial.
  • Interpersonal Skills: Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, enabling collaboration with musicians, conductors, and the administrative team of The Chelsea Symphony. The ability to work effectively as part of a team is essential.
  • Commitment and Flexibility: Willingness to commit to the full one-year term, including active participation in rehearsals, concerts, workshops, and associated activities. The One-Year Composition Fellow must be adaptable and open to collaborating with musicians and embracing different artistic approaches.
  • Professional Growth Mindset: A strong desire to grow as a composer and engage in continuous learning. The Composition Fellow should be receptive to feedback and committed to ongoing professional development.


The Chelsea Symphony is dedicated to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in all aspects of its operations. As an organization, we strongly believe that diverse perspectives and experiences enrich the artistic process and contribute to a more vibrant and inclusive musical community. Therefore, in line with our EDI goals, we particularly encourage applications from candidates who will contribute to the diversity of our organization.

As part of the application process, candidates are invited to share how their unique background and experiences align with our commitment to EDI. The Chelsea Symphony welcomes applications from individuals who are traditionally underrepresented in the composition field and seeks to provide an inclusive platform for emerging talents to flourish.

By actively fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion, we aim to create an environment where all members of The Chelsea Symphony can thrive and contribute to the artistic excellence and cultural enrichment of our organization and community.

Terms of Engagement

  • This is a two-year engagement, beginning in the 2023-2024 season and concluding in the 2024-2025 season.
  • The position guarantees the performance of a previously-composed work in the 2023-2024 season and the opportunity to compose a new work for the 2024-2025 season.
  • Active participation in rehearsals, workshops, and concerts is required throughout the fellowship.
  • The fellowship may be extended for a subsequent year at the discretion of the Artistic Directors, Chelsea Symphony Board, and Executive Director.

Application Process:

To apply for the position of One-Year Composition Fellow with The Chelsea Symphony, please submit the following documents:

  1. Cover letter highlighting your interest in the position and your compositional goals.
  2. Composer's resume detailing your education, composition experience, and relevant achievements.
  3. Three (3) representative compositions showcasing your style and range as a composer. These may include chamber, orchestral, or other ensemble works. One of these works should be the work which you intend to be considered for performance during the 2023-2024 Season.
    1. Works must not exceed the following maximum orchestration.
      1. Maximum orchestration: (playable by players)
      2. Standard auxiliary doubling for winds is acceptable but may not exceed maximum forces.
    2. Works may not include soloists.
    3. Extramusical components will be considered on a case-by-case basis with regards to feasibility of performance (i.e.: electronics, visual, spacial, choreographic, etc.) Works may not exceed a projected performance length of 15 minutes.
  4. Recordings or MIDI realizations of the submitted compositions, if available.

Applications should be submitted via Online Application Link.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for an interview and may be asked to present additional materials or discuss their compositions in further detail.

About the Chelsea Symphony

The Chelsea Symphony aims to democratize the concert experience and foster shared discovery through socially engaged programming, professional support for musicians, and an inclusive and accessible environment for all audiences. As a non-profit, self-governing orchestra, TCS provides performance opportunities for its musicians while operating on an affordable scale. Soloists, conductors, and featured composers are chosen from within the orchestra's ranks, earning this benefit through their participation. Administrative operations are also handled by members of the ensemble.

Founded in 2005 by young conductors Yaniv Segal and Miguel Campos Neto, The Chelsea Symphony has earned a reputation as one of the most innovative ensembles in the New York metropolitan area. Shortly after its inception, the orchestra was featured in WNYC's "Salute to the Arts" Initiative, and The New York Times praised the ensemble for its "earnest, vibrant" playing. The Chelsea Symphony has collaborated with notable artists such as Clay Aiken, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Tony Award winner Lillias White, Broadway composer Seth Rudetsky, the Irish Tenors, and fashion designer Malan Breton. The orchestra's annual holiday concert has featured guest celebrities Richard Kind, David Hyde Pierce, Ana Gasteyer, Charles Busch, Andrea Martin, Rachel Dratch, Mo Rocca, Victor Garber, BD Wong, Seth Rudetsky, and Annie Golden narrating Aaron Dai's The Night Before Christmas.