Rapido Composition Contest


Information on the winners of all Rapido! contest cycles.

Rapido! Take Four!! National Composition Contest, 2015-2016

The Grand Prize Winner of the most recent Rapido! Composition Contest was Mark Buller! As a resident of Houston, TX, Mark won the Southwest Regional Semi-Finals and went on to win the National Finals in Atlanta, GA on January 17, 2016. Check our home page for upcoming performances of the completed winning commissions.

The Audience Favorite Prize of the Take Four!! Cycle was awarded to Louis Cruz, the National Finalist from the Northeast Region.

The 15 Semi-Finalist Composers:

  • Midwest (Detroit Chamber Winds & Strings)
    • Randy Bauer, Minneapolis, MN
    • Luke Dahn, Orange City, IA
    • Kevin Eppich, Cleveland, OH [Chosen as a NATIONAL FINALIST]
  • Northeast (Boston Musica Viva)
    • Louis Cruz, New York, NY [Chosen as a NATIONAL FINALIST]
    • J.P. Redmond, Yonkers, NY
    • Nathan J. Stumpff, Northfield, VT
  • Southeast (Atlanta Chamber Players)
    • Eric Benaim, Aventura, FL
    • Nickitas Demos, Atlanta, GA
    • Peter Van Zandt Lane, Athens, GA [Chosen as a NATIONAL FINALIST]
  • Southwest (Voices of Change)
    • Mark Buller, Houston, TX [Chosen as a NATIONAL FINALIST and GRAND PRIZE WINNER]
    • Richard Hermann, Albuquerque, NM
    • Alex Luttrell, Lewisville, TX
  • West Coast (Left Coast Chamber Ensemble)
    • Roman Baranskiy, San Francisco, CA
    • Leslie Hogan, Santa Barbara, CA
    • Kenneth Lim, Los Angeles, CA [Chosen as a NATIONAL FINALIST]

    Rapido! Take Four contest is still ongoing! Click to find out more.

    Rapido! Take Three!! 2012-2013, 50 States

    Zoll and Paula Peace (far right) with the musicians who performed his work: (from left) Tim Whitehead, Elizabeth Koch Tiscione, Helen Kim and Brad Ritchie. (Photo by Tim Redman)

    2012-2013 National Finalists

    Mark Berger, NE Rapido Finalist Leanna Primiani, WC Rapido Finalist Steven Snethkamp, MW Rapido Finalist
    Northeast West Coast Midwest
    Dream Dances Holy Order:
    Shaker Dances
    Dances from The Luminiferous Ether
    Watch Video Watch Video Watch Video
    Piotr Szewczyk, SE Rapido Finalist Charles Zoll, SW Rapido Finalist
    Southeast Southwest
    Twisted Dances Bailes encima del escritorio de nuestra juventúd
    Watch Video Watch Video


    The Rapido process worked brilliantly – discovering new voices while energizing patrons, musicians and audiences alike. ~ArtsCriticATL.com

    Rapido! 2011 has been one of the most satisfying experiences of my professional life.
    ~John Elmquist,  Rapido Take Two!! First Prize Winner

    Rapido! Take Two!! National Finals Concert – January 2011

    Rapido! Take Two!!
    Photo by Nick Arroyo
    Atlanta Chamber Players, Judges & Composer Finalists – Atlanta, GA
    Far left & far right: ACP musicians–Brad Ritchie, Christina Smith, Paula Peace, Alcides Rodriguez
    Back row: Rapido! Finalist judges–Dennis Hanthorn, Atlanta Opera General Director; Robert Spano, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Music 

Director; Michael Gandolfi, Chair of Composition, New England Conservatory
    Front row: Rapido! Finalists–Patrick Greene, Piotr Szewczyk, John Elmquist

    Rapido! Take Two!! 2010-2011, 29 States

    Atlanta Chamber Players, Atlanta, Southeast Region
    Boston Musica Viva, Boston, New England Region
    Fifth House Ensemble, Chicago, Midwest Region

    Required Form & Instrumentation:
    Suite of Miniatures & Flute/Clarinet/Cello/Piano


    Rapido! Take Two!! 2011 First Prize Winner:

    ELMQUIST: Junk Shot (2011)
    Photo by Nick Arroyo
    John Elmquist

    Midwest, Chicago, Illinois
    Read Bio | Watch Video | Website

    ELMQUIST: Junk Shot (2011)
    World Premiere Oct 23, 2011
    by the Atlanta Chamber Players

    1. 'Orizon - Decessional
    2. On My Shoe
    3. Fleur de Plume - Secret Clams

    Download Concert

    Rapido! Take Two!! 2011 Other Finalists:

    Patrick Greene

    New England, Boston, Massachusetts
    Winner of Audience Favorite Prize
    Read Bio| Watch Video | Website


    I. Elemental, structural
    II. Expressive
    III. Motoric
    IV. Immutable, eternal

    SZEWCZYK: Images from a Journey
    Piotr Szewczyk

    Southeast, Jacksonville, Florida
    Read Bio | Watch Video | Website

    SZEWCZYK: Images from a Journey

    1. Through a Prism
    2. Moonlight Passacaglia
    3. Night's Embrace
    4. Gypsy Ballroom

    Rapido! 2009, 11 States

    Atlanta Chamber Players, Atlanta, Southeast Region

    Required Form & Instrumentation:
    Theme & Variations & Oboe/Violin/Viola/Cello/Piano


    Rapido! 2009 First Prize Winner:

    GRIER: Diverse Variations on A-C-P (2010)
    Jon Jeffrey Grier

    Greenville, South Carolina
    Read Bio | Website

    GRIER: Diverse Variations on A-C-P (2010)
    World premiere April 28, 2010
    by the Atlanta Chamber Players

      Introduction and Canonic Variations
      Theme and Rapid Variations
      Lyric Variations, Interrupted

    Download Concert
Ensembles Atlanta Symphony Voices of Change Detroit Chamber Winds & Strings Boston Musica Viva Atlanta Chamber Players