A highlight of the evening will be the announcement of the winner of the 6th annual Charlie Parker Jazz Composition Prize, given to the writer of the best new work composed in the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop. The winning composer will receive a cash award and the $3000 Manny Albam Commission to compose a new piece for the following year's concert. Named in memory of the Workshop's co-founder and longtime musical director, previous winners of the Manny Albam Commission include Rufus Reid, Jamie Begian, Noriko Ueda and last year's top composer, Darcy Argue, who will premiere his commissioned piece entitled "Desolation Sound."
The judges for this year's Charlie Parker Jazz Composition Prize competition are Dan Morgenstern, eminent jazz historian and director of the Institute for Jazz Studies at Rutgers University; Dave Douglas, virtuoso trumpet player, improviser, composer and bandleader; and Maria Schneider, Grammy Award-winning composer, arranger and bandleader. The winner will be announced from the stage from among the three finalists: Sherisse Rogers ("The Slippery Slope"), Ann Belmont ("Home [As Night Falls]") and Volker Goetze ("Tree").
The BMI Jazz Composers Workshop is led by internationally-renowned composers Jim McNeely and Michael Abene and offers a unique collaborative environment for professional jazz musicians with an emphasis on composition for the large jazz ensemble.