Student Composer Competition

A music writing competition for all ages to create an original work for solo instrument or any combination of instruments or a voice composition with or without accompaniment. Provincial first place winners in each age division are submitted to the CFMTA National Student Composer Competition. Awards for winners of each category range from $50-$150.

Congratulations to our 2017 Student Composer Competition winners!

Category A Class 1 (11 years and under)
First Place: Kathie Zhou
Teacher: Susan Maxwell
Composition: Vivid Memories

Category B Class 1 (15 years and under)
First Place: Alexander Bai
Teacher: Susan Maxwell
Composition: The Search for Freedom

Category B Class 1 (15 years and under)
First Place: Rhea Jones
Teacher: Jay Arca
Composition: Super Star

Category C Class 1 (19 years and under)
First Place: Micah Sudom
Teacher: Betty Bischke
Composition: In the Wild

Category D Class 1 (open)
First Place: Gloria Chu
Teacher: Paul Bagley
Composition: Persist

Canadian Folk Song Arrangement Prizes: 
Gloria Chu
Teacher: Paul Bagley
Composition: She’s Like the Swallow

Chantalle Sabourin
Teacher: Jamie Deibert
Composition: A la Claire Fontaine Interpretation

More information coming soon for the 2018 Student Composer Competition with entries due by April 1, 2018

Click here for the 2017 **PRINTABLE** entry form and list of divisions

Click here for the 2017 **ONLINE** entry form and list of divisions

Special Composing Opportunity for 2017!

To mark ARMTA’s 85th Anniversary and the 150th Birthday of Canada, ARMTA will be offering additional one time awards of $50 in each entry Division (A, B, C, D) for the best composition as determined by our adjudicator, based on a Canadian folk song including First Nations traditional music. The following is a suggested list of folk songs and titles of resources.  You may also choose your own Canadian folk song from these or other similar resources, but make sure that you use only the tune and not an arrangement that may already be copyrighted.  Folk songs by their nature are in the public domain and will be listed as “traditional” or “anonymous.”  In addition, if you are setting any of these folks songs for voice and accompaniment, please acknowledge the creator of the translated words if applicable.

Suggested Canadian Folk Songs:

  • A la Claire Fontaine
  • Alouette
  • D’ou Viens-tu, Bergere
  • En Roulant Ma Boule
  • Feller from Fortune
  • I’se the B’y that Builds the Boat
  • Land of the Silver Birch
  • Lots of Fish in Bonavist Harbour
  • She’s Like the Swallow
  • The Alberta Homesteader
  • The Huron Carol
  • The Red River Valley

Suggested Resources:

These items can also be searched for in libraries across Alberta on TAL online, You may also wish to search your school library as well or check with your school music teacher.

The Penguin Book of Canadian Folk Songs compiled by Edith Fowke

Canadian Folk Songs for the Young selected by Barbara Cass-Beggs

Singing Our History by Edith Fowke and Alan Mills

Folk Songs of Canada – literary editor: Edith Fowke; music editor: Richard Johnston

Canada’s Story in Song by Edith Fowke and Alan Mills

If you are unsure and have questions, or have difficulty in accessing any materials please contact the convenor, Christine Rogers at


Provincial Regulations:

1. Entries must be neat and legible, handwritten in black ink, or computer printouts. Entries may be sent by mail to the address on the application form or uploaded using the online application. Faxed or e-mailed entries cannot be accepted. Please note: The Electroacoustic category is NOT being offered provincially this year.

2. Each entry must be the work of the person named as entrant, or it will be nullified. Manuscripts must be written out by the entrant or computer-generated, except that Division A entries may be copied out by others if needed.

3. The entrant must be of correct age as of June 1, 2017 and be a student of an ARMTA member in good standing.

4. The entrant’s name and address must appear on each composition or its title page. Please write in the measure number at the start of each line; tempo markings, dynamics, and other appropriate editing should be included.

5. An entrant may submit one or more works, and enter both sections of Division A or B if desired, but must keep to a single age division. In each division (and each section of Divisions A and B) Provincial First and/or Honourable Mention(s) may be given.

6. Entrants moving after April 1st must send written notice to the ARMTA Student Composer Competition/Canada Music Week Convenor.

7. Entries must be received by April 1, 2017. A fully-completed form and the proper Provincial fee must accompany each piece entered.

8. Each Provincial entry will receive a written adjudication. Compositions are returned to the composer, along with a certificate of participation (sometime in June) EXCEPT FOR Provincial First Place entries. They are forwarded on to the CFMTA National competition. The winners will be notified of this. They will receive the adjudication and certificate of participation.

9. Provincial 1st Place winners are entered into the CFMTA National Student Composer Competition. (Deadline: June 1, 2017) The ARMTA Convenor will forward Provincial winning works to CFMTA. ARMTA will pay the National entry fees. At the National level, only First Place Awards are given. All decisions are final. Award cheques must be cashed within thirty days of receipt.

10. ARMTA and CFMTA reserve the right to display or otherwise use a winning work for publicity purposes. All other rights remain with the entrant.

NOTE: Only winners of the Provincial Student Composer Competition can enter the CFMTA Competition.

Click here for: National Student Composer Competition (CFMTA)