Call for composers

Take part in Dutch National Ballet’s Choreographic Academy 2023

Would you like to write the music for a new creation for the Junior Company in the 2023-2024 season?

Choreographic Academy
Photo: Michel Schnater

Dutch National Ballet is one of the leading classical ballet companies in the world. Since 2013, Dutch National Ballet has had its own hotbed of young talent: the Junior Company (JC). After completing a two-year programme, JC dancers often move up to the main company. At present, around half the dancers in Dutch National Ballet’s main company came from the JC, and the initiative has served as a model for other countries around the world.

The JC also gives people from other disciplines the opportunity to develop their talent and expertise; from choreographers and composers to production and technical experts. This happens, for example, at the Choreographic Academy – a laboratory that provides a platform for makers to hone their skills and which lends itself to research and experiment. Over the space of three weeks, a select number of participants get to work with the JC dancers, focusing on deepening the creative process. Participants are supported and challenged, both in the studio and outside of it. For example, the process includes workshops on leadership and topical issues (artistic and otherwise) in the performing arts. The results of the research period are shared with an audience.

As part of the tenth anniversary of the Junior Company, the Dutch Ballet Orchestra and Dutch National Ballet are giving a young composer the opportunity to compose a piece of music for a new choreographic work. The composition for four musicians should be no more than ten minutes long and will be performed live. The preparations for the composition, in dialogue with the choreographer and the principal conductor of the Dutch Ballet Orchestra, among others, will take place (online) from March 2023. At the start of the Choreographic Academy, on 14 August 2023, the foundations will thus have been laid for beginning the creative process with the dancers. The Academy will take place live at Dutch National Opera & Ballet, in Amsterdam, and will run until 2 September 2023. It will be rounded off with a presentation for guests. The new ballet may possibly be included in the JC’s touring programme, the premiere of which will take place in Amsterdam/De Meervaart, on 3 February 2024.

Who are we looking for?

For this commission, we are looking for a composer with a maximum of ten years work experience, who wants to grow as a professional. The candidate we have in mind already has a good understanding of the profession and wants to create work in close collaboration with a choreographer and dancers. The composer is also open to a broader dialogue with experienced colleagues. During the Academy, there will be various thematic working sessions with guests, about current developments in the performing arts and the future of new music for dance.

Are you a composer who is interested in dialogue and research? Are you curious about the performing arts and dance as an art form? Do you like the idea of a creative process that ends with an intensive period in the dance studio? If so – send in your application today!

What are we offering?

We offer you a stimulating work environment, in which you receive support from a team of leading professionals who are active as advisers prior to the Academy and during it. For your participation in this Choreographic Academy, a fee will be agreed in accordance with the Nieuw Geneco Fair Practice Code. There will be a reasonable allowance for travel and accommodation expenses. The working language is English.

Applications can be submitted until 15 January 2023 through

Please send us the following information:

  • A cover letter: what do you expect to learn and why do you want to write music for dance?
  • A short biography and a letter of recommendation
  • Links to your work – both written excerpts and sound clips

We will respond to all applicants by 15 February 2023 at the latest. The creative process will start in March 2023 with a festive kick-off meeting.