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The New Musical Theatre Commissioning Project

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Through the generosity of an anonymous donor, Forte Musical Theatre Guild is commissioning musical theatre artists to write songs for possible inclusion in future projects! To be considered for the commission, Forte is asking Canadian musical theatre writers to submit a portfolio of three songs, which demonstrate their writing ability, by Friday, April 30th, 2021.


If chosen, Forte will pay each writer or team $250 upon accepting the commission and $250 upon delivery of the completed song. Here are the details:


Since 2010, Forte has been exploring the format of thematically linked musical revues incorporating the work of different writers and has had great success in this format, both critically and with our audiences. We are currently developing the following projects and invite selected writers to contribute a song to one of the following:


Touch Me - a song inspired by, or about an experience with, technology and/or social media, especially as it relates to the themes of connection and/or isolation.


Singing Out - a song inspired by, or about an experience with, singing in a gay choir.


Naughty… but Nice - a comedy song inspired by, or about an experience with, the holiday season, and reflecting either the secular experience or any one of the various faith traditions surrounding the winter holidays.


You’re creating the character or characters in the song so feel free to stretch beyond your own experience if you like. 


Since this is musical theatre, your song should tell a story or reveal character. Something should happen over the course of the song: a reversal, a realization, a connection, a loss - all are possibilities. Humour is great but don’t be afraid of using it to reveal a universal experience or an uncomfortable truth. 


Your song can be a solo, duet, trio or quartet including up to two voices in the Soprano/Alto range and two in the Tenor/Bass range.


The song remains your property but Forte retains the option of including it in a future production and you would be paid an additional royalty for each use in that case, which would be negotiated in good faith and in accordance with industry standards. 


Upon accepting the commission, each writer or team would commit to submitting: 


  • A demo mp3 (does not have to be fancy, you and piano or guitar on garage band is fine!) 

  • A printed copy of the lyrics in Word or PDF format 

  • A PDF of the piano/vocal score or, if your practice is more guitar based, a lead sheet including the melody and chords


The completed song should be submitted by Friday, May 28th, 2021, whereupon you’d receive the balance of the commission payment. 


All Canadian musical theatre writers are encouraged to apply but, in an effort to include more diverse voices in our projects and in accordance with our commitment to the 35//50 initiative, at least six out of the ten commissions will be given to women and BIPOC artists.


To be considered for this commission, please send an email along with mp3s of three portfolio works to no later than Friday, April 30th. 


Joe Slabe

Artistic Director - Forte Musical Theatre Guild

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