Creation of the Élan Award

An international composition competition for an orchestral work held as part of the ManiFeste festival

Ircam and the Orchestre national d’Île-de-Francejoin forces to launch a new international award for composition: Creation of the Élan Award. It will be realized in partnership with France Musique, the Maison de la Musique Contemporaine, and the Durand Salabert Eschig publishing house / Universal Music.

Ircam and the Orchestre national d’Île-de-France, two musical bodies with a strong commitment to promoting contemporary creations and a new generation of artists, are joining forces to create the Élan Award, a new international composition competition for an orchestral work, including the “Île de créations” (the orchestral composition competition created in 2010 by the Orchestre national d’Île-de-France) at the Ircam Academy. The American composer Augusta Read Thomas and pianist Marie-Ange Nguci will chair the first edition in July 2022, held as part of the Ircam ManiFeste festival.”

Fabienne Voisin, Managing Director of the Orchestre national d’Île-de-France

“The orchestra is once again the focus of composers’ imaginations in the 21st century. Its enlargement, particularly through the integration of electronics is time and again new territory. The keen interest shown by young artists in the orchestral composition workshops that we have launched in recent years has pushed us to be more ambitious as we recover from the health crisis. Through the commitment of our partners, the Élan Award will contribute to fostering a new generation of artists with, on the horizon, a renewal of the musical repertory that we hold dear."

Frank Madlener, Director of Ircam

 The young composers shortlisted to compete in the Élan Award will enjoy an exceptional creation support platform that combines the expertise of the two bodies in terms of training on composing a work for orchestra and electronic music. They will be guided in their composition work both by musicians at the Orchestra and by the Ircam’s teams, as well as by guest artists who will join the supervising team each year.

As part of the ManiFeste festival academy, the finalists will attend an orchestral composition workshop and will take part in rehearsals of the piano concertos they have composed for the competition. These will be played by the Orchestre national d’Île-de-France at the Philharmonie de Paris, conducted by Rebecca Tong. Following this public concert, the Élan Award ceremony will be held, supported by an endowment from France Musique and the Maison de la Musique Contemporaine. The winning composition will be played on France Musique radio station during Anne Montaron’s programme “Création mondiale” and the score will be published by Durand-Salabert-Eschig / UMPC.

Artists associated with this edition of the Award:
composer Augusta Read Thomas, pianist Marie-Ange Nguci and conductor Rebecca Tong

The winner will also receive a commission from Ircam and the Orchestre national d’Île-de-France to compose a new work for solo instrument, orchestra and electronic music, which will be created during the following year’s ManiFeste festival. During the winner’s training in electronic music, they will receive teaching and advice from Ircam’s computer music producers. The compositions of the Élan Award finalists and of the winner will be performed during the Orchestra’s seasons, on tour in the Île-de-France region around Paris and in other regions across France to guarantee their very broad dissemination.

A jump-start for the careers of young composers, the Élan Award is designed to promote their influence and offer them professional support over several years.

For further information

Information and conditions from May 3 2021
Submission period from June 1st to November 3 2021
Applicants must be born after January 1st 1990
Award to be presented on July 1st 2022
Premiere of the winner’s commission in June 2023


  • Orchestre national d'Ile-de-France  © Ondif, Christophe Urbain
    Orchestre national d'Ile-de-France © Ondif, Christophe Urbain