Apply to ICElab

Our ICElab 2014 Collaborators Are Announced:
Suzanne Farrin
Rick Burkhardt
Sabrina Schroeder
Jeff Snyder and Sam Pluta
Zosha Di Castri and David Adamcyk
Juan Camilo Hernández Sánchez

Thank you to all who applied!


ICElab is a collaborative program designed to nurture the careers of emerging composers and multimedia artists while generating a body of innovative works for the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE). Selected composer-collaborators will receive a commission to create a substantial new piece for ICE that will be presented in ICE's 2014 season in New York, Chicago and select other cities.

Composers and artists of all backgrounds, styles, and approaches—Western or non-Western, traditional or nontraditional notation, jazz, classical, improvisatory, performance art, etc.—are invited to apply.

Flexible, collaborative, multimedia and multi-genre works are permitted and encouraged. Any combination of up to five ICE musicians may be used from ICE's Artist Roundtable, and applicants should conceive of their projects without a conductor. Conductors will not be a part of the 2014 ICElab program.

Applicants are asked to consider how their proposed project would scale to make the biggest impact in varying environments. How would this project be adapted if it was performed in a football stadium? In a black box theatre? In a small room with live video streaming to the world? We are interested in visionary, large-scale work that can be produced practically and successfully in different types of venues and with a set number of collaborators.

If you wish to work with an outside video artist, engineer or other non-musical collaborator, you may name your selected collaborators in this application. You do not have to know who these collaborators are at the time of your application: ICE will work collaboratively with you to choose the best team, and we will consider projects that have pre-formed collaborative teams equally with those that do not.


The most important defining feature of ICElab is its collaborative structure. Selected composer-collaborators will work together with ICE musicians to develop their project through a week-long intensive incubation residency early in the creative process, subsequent exploratory rehearsals as needed, and active engagement in performances, educational outreach, and online engagement through DigitICE, ICE’s online media portal.

We encourage projects that make full use of the members of ICE, including using improvisation as a tool for creative development, innovative group-composition models, and other approaches which leverage ICE's performers as both creative and an expressive resources.

The Submission Process

Using the online form, please propose your project for the ICElab program. Explain your concept, your proposed instrumentation, collaborators and duration. Be sure to explain not just the work itself, but also how you envision the collaborative, creative development process unfolding, and how the project can scale in larger and smaller environments.

We also ask for a 100-word autobiography that will give us some perspective on your work and ideas. Finally, we request an explanation of why you want to work with ICE, and how this project will help you realize your long-term creative goals.

In addition to the proposal questions, please submit 2 scores or other visual representations of your work in PDF format, and 2 audio recordings as a streaming link. For PDFs please use Box, or Dropbox. For audio recordings please use Soundcloud, Box, Dropbox, or other sites that host high-quality streaming audio. SUBMIT LINKS ONLY, DO NOT ATTACH FILES.

You are also encouraged to include links to video samples if they will strengthen your application. These submissions should be representative of the quality and variety of your work.
Deadline for submissions is March 1, 2013 at 11:59 pm. ICE will announce the selected ICElab composer-collaborators in April 2013.  For questions on applying, email



Who is eligible to apply?
ICElab is open to all emerging artists and composers. ICE does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age, or sexual orientation; artists from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

How does ICE define "emerging"?
For ICE, "emerging artists” are prospective collaborators for whom ICElab would be a significant professional opportunity or major advancement in their artistic field.

How does ICE define “composer”?For the purposes of ICElab, ICE defines a “composer” as anyone who works within the field of sound.

Is there a fee to apply?
No. We hate fees too!

How much will I be paid?
Commission fees for ICElab composer-collaborators will range from $5,000 to $10,000, depending on the scope and size of the project. Additionally, all ICElab team members including the composer, will be paid for their time during the workshop period. Workshops and performances of ICElab work are compensated  for composers, performers and other team members in the project.  Travel and other incidental expenses will be covered by ICE.

What instrumentation can I use?
You may select any group of up to five members of ICE’s Artist Roundtable. Non-traditional collections or configurations of performers are welcomed and encouraged (string quartets and Pierrot ensembles are openly discouraged).

Can I propose a project with a visual or multimedia component?
Yes. ICE is an acclaimed performer, presenter and incubator of all kinds of projects, from purely acoustic music compositions to multimedia performances. All ideas are welcome.

What kind of time commitment is involved?
Composer-collaborators are required to participate in a week-long residency with ICE, pre-performance rehearsals as necessary, and 3-5 educational outreach events with ICE musicians over the course of the project. Composers are also expected to participate actively and regularly in the DigitICE online media portal. All artists are compensated for their time. Travel and other incidental expenses will be covered by ICE.

Why can I only submit electronic materials? Why no hard copies/CDs?
We require electronic submission of scores and recordings. This allows our submission process to be free of charge to you, protects the environment, and streamlines ICE’s collaborative review process. We will not accept any supplementary hard copy materials.

Why can’t I write for more than five instruments? Doesn’t ICE have a full orchestra?
ICE is interested in commissioning and creating work that can be produced, mounted and disseminated practically and widely. We don’t want your piece to be performed just once or twice because it’s too expensive to produce; we want your piece to be performed all over the world, all the time.

What if I know I want to create a work with video or lights or dance, but I don’t know any video artists, lighting designers or choreographers?ICE will work with you to find the dream-team for your project.

If I know who I want to work with, and am applying with another artist or with a group of artists, do I need to submit materials for everyone involved?
No. Just submit materials for yourself and your work, and reference the collaborators by name. We will contact you if we need more information about your proposed team.