Policy on Edits

This policy pertains to edits after works have been handed in by the deadline. While we understand that everyone is different, and that some composers might be used to continually editing, even during rehearsals, in an environment such as MMF, we need to be respectful of everyone's time and effort with regard to learning these new works, many of which are quite difficult. Once the performers and conductors have the music, they will be working extremely hard, which includes practicing your music outside official rehearsals. If you attempt to make major changes, it really does matter, since they'll have to re-learn your music, and that wastes a lot of time.

Just to be clear: after your works are handed in for performances or readings, minor edits are allowed, major edits are not. Minor corrections (note mistakes, meaning a note here and there) are allowed, of course. Any changes that would be considered "major changes" are at the discretion of the ensembles and conductors they are working with, if there is one, and they are under no obligation to incorporate major re-writes or play from a new set of parts.

This leads to the question: what's the difference between minor and major edits? While not exhaustive by any means, here are some examples:

Minor Edits

  • Altering a handful of articulations in a piece (a handful meaning ca. 1-10, or changing an accent to a hard accent for a section).
  • Adjust a few dynamics.
  • Fixing a note here and there.
  • transposing a few measures up or down an octave.
  • Changing a measure (and no more than a few measures per piece) from 6/8-7/8. or 5/4-4/4, etc.
  • Basically, if it can be written in fairly easily by hand, with a pencil, it's probably a minor edit.
  • Removing material (sometimes a bit annoying, but people rarely complain about having less to play).

Major Edits

  • Adding new sections.
  • Re-writing entire melodies, phrases or rows of notes.
  • Changing a lot of time signatures.
  • Changing instruments all together (clarinet instead of bass clarinet - these types of changes are at the discretion of the performer).
  • Making new parts and scores.

Any questions, please feel free to contact the American Modern Festival's Composition Program Coordinator, or ask the ensembles when you work with them.