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We are now accepting proposals for the 2021–2022 season.

Please read all the information below and note the submission deadline of May 7, 2021 at 11:59 pm.

ABOUT THE SERIES

Michele_photo by PRoss

Offering 40+ distinctive FREE weekly concerts, our series aims to promote local professional artists at all stages of their careers, enlarge and diversify the audience for early music, and enhance our vibrant early music community. We are proud to provide performance opportunities for over 200 artists and to serve over 4,000 audience members each year. Each program features historically informed repertoire on period instruments, making a meaningful contribution to New York’s cultural offerings.

  • The series provides a great venue for high-quality performers to experiment with new repertoire or present an established program, while gaining new local and global audiences. It also provides new ensembles an introduction to the city’s early music aficionados, and touring groups a New York City performance credit.
  • Each program is given a full page on our website, a listing and photo in our full-color 12-page brochure, and is featured in our bi-weekly newsletter Notes on the Scene. In addition, we send out a monthly press release to over 300 media contacts, post and advertise the event on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
  • Artists/ensembles are PAID an honorarium, as noted below.
  • Concerts will be performed live, and before a live audience when protocols allow. It will be simultaneously live streamed to the GEMS website, Facebook, and YouTube. Within a week or two, the live streamed performance will be replaced on these platforms by an edited version.

Gold and GlitterPERFORMANCE REQUIREMENTS

Our series comprises weekly concerts of 40–45 minutes each, Thursdays at 1:15, at either the the Chapel of St. Bart's Church on Park Avenue or Church of the Transfiguration just off Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan, from September through June. It is intended to showcase music from roughly 1100–1800, performed in historically-informed style, on period instruments.

Preference will be given to ensembles that have made a long-term commitment to performing with one another, though ad hoc groups offering an innovative or especially interesting program concept will be considered.
We expect all ensembles to perform solely in historical performance style:

  • Historical temperament and pitch
  • Period instruments ONLY
  • No crossover music with other genres, or arrangements of large pieces – i.e., no vocal recitals of early opera arias with solo harpsichord accompaniment replacing orchestral instrumentation.

If you have a special program that you feel is worthy of consideration (for example, a modern composer has written music for your period instrument ensemble), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and we will tell you whether it is acceptable for the series.

HarpsichordNote to Keyboard Players:

Midtown Concerts can supply a harpsichord; the type will be based on our final determination of the series venue. If concerts are held at St. Bart's, it is a basic Flemish single manual harpsichord (pictured at left). It will transpose for a'=415 or 440 Hz. It is 2 x 8' with a buff stop, all with stop levers in the keywell. The range is from C' to d"' (51 notes). Plastic jacks and plectra. It is fine for continuo purposes.

If concerts are at Church of the Transfiguration, it is a double manual (inquire about specs).

If you are proposing a solo recital or repertoire requiring a more sophisticated instrument, you probably should plan to bring your own. We may be able to pay a portion or all of the rental or cartage – please inquire.

YOU will be responsible for the tuning, and assisting in moving and setting up the harpsichord (which is stored at the venue, but not in the performance space itself) both before and AFTER the concert. If you cannot tune, please do not submit a proposal.

We do not provide an organ or a fortepiano for the concerts. We will accept submissions from performers who propose to move and tune their own instruments. We may be able to pay a portion or all of the rental or cartage – please inquire.

BALAM Dance TheatreAUDIO &  VIDEO RECORDINGS, PHOTOGRAPHS

Each concert will be live streamed and recorded. With your permission, we will keep an edited version online for on-demand viewing and forwarding for later broadcast/webcast on classical radio stations. You will have an opportunity to view and listen to the recording and withhold any or all pieces from archived or forwarded copies.

Concert images and videos may be posted on the Midtown Concerts website and social media pages.

ACCEPTANCE, CONTRACTS, COMPENSATION

Proposals will be reviewed by a selection panel comprising GEMS staff, professional musicians and critics, and knowledgeable audience members convening in late May. As we often receive more proposals than there are concert dates, not all proposals will be accepted. We make choices based on overall programmatic considerations, frequency of any prior appearances, logistics, etc.

Timeline

Proposals are entered online, using the link at bottom. The deadline for submitting proposals for 2020–2021 is:

Friday, May 7, 2021 at 11:59 pm

The online form automatically goes "off-line" at the deadline. To be fair to everyone, we will not consider deadline extensions for any reason, including technical difficulties. Allow sufficient lead time to build and submit your information; please do not wait until the last minute.

For artists with websites and the usual complement of publicity assets, experience has shown that the proposal can be finished in about 30 minutes.

  • June 1: All artists will be notified of selection results.
  • June 5: Scheduling begins. We confer with you to establish workable performance dates!
  • July: Formal contracts are sent

All required materials requested in the online proposal form must be submitted, including programs, for a contract to be issued.

Proposal Guidelines

In addition to basic contact information about you and/or your group, we ask for a proposed program title and description, instruments used, bios, photos, and links or uploads to audio files illustrating your work.

  • Be sure to fill in all prompts on the form and submit all required materials. This information is used for publicity and for contracts, so be mindful of submitting accurate information. If you have any technical difficulties or questions, please email the Midtown Concerts Manager, Joanne Floyd, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • When uploading audio or linking video samples, please try to include a recording of your entire ensemble. If possible, include samples that best represent repertoire in your proposal; put your best material at the start of a sample.
  • Please submit professional photos, no selfies. If you do not have a picture of your group, please submit personal headshots of each member. You must include the name of the photographer for proper credit.
  • Settle on your artists and repertoire as accurately as possible before submitting. Ensure that all of the information that will be made public – concert title, description, and list of personnel and instruments – is accurate. Our publicity begins in August, including the printed or online brochure which lists the entire season, and we would like to avoid confusion.
  • You may submit more than one concert proposal with separate programs.

CHANGING YOUR PROGRAM after your contract is issued: our brochure lists the entire season. After printing, we can allow only minor changes in repertoire or personnel, since many patrons rely exclusively on the printed brochure. If you must make last-minute changes due to artist illness or similar unavoidable events, please let us know as soon as possible.

Compensation

We pay a modest honorarium of $125 per performer, with a total cap of $625 per concert. We also provide a high-quality recording, program booklets, a CD sales table, publicity, and front-of-house services. We do not pay travel expenses.

If you have questions about the proposal process, please feel free to contact us via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone: 212.866.0468.

ENTER AND SUBMIT YOUR PROPOSAL

When you click the link below, your online form will be launched. We encourage you to allow enough time to upload and review the required materials to be certain that they best represent your vision as effectively as possible. Once your form is submitted, you will receive an email confirming that your proposal has been received.

We are looking forward to planning another great season, and we thank you for your proposal! Please click below to get started:

Submit Proposal here

 

 

Midtown Concerts sponsors lunchtime performances of music of the 18th century and earlier. Ensembles are chosen by a panel of early music specialists from the metropolitan area.

Time: Thursdays, 1:15 – 2:00 pm
All concerts are free; no tickets or reservations are necessary.

Concerts are currently live streamed, followed by an intimate chat on Zoom.