An online new music intensive for composers and performers
led by Grammy Award-winning cellist and educator Nick Photinos

January 9-16, 2022​

Are you a:

  • Performer hungry for new music, eager to expand your solo repertoire and your community by premiering a new piece written just for you, all while in a collaborative environment led by world-class faculty?
  • Composer excited to work closely with talented players, developing a new work quickly from conception through performance, all while building your community and coaching with esteemed composers and performers?

This January 9-16, join Nick Photinos and special guest faculty Carlos Carrillo, Hannah Collins, and Tim Munro for:

  • 1-to-1 pairing of composers and performers
  • 1 month for composers to write 1 new piece for solo player (5-10 minutes in length)
  • 1 week for solo players to learn 1 new piece
  • 1-to-1 coaching and masterclasses with esteemed faculty
  • 1 week to prepare a final online concert on social media

Now in its eighth iteration, 1:2:1 is a one-week online intensive pairing composers and solo performers on any instrument or voice to create new work and new communities. Limited to a maximum of just 16 people (eight pairs of composers and performers), this close-knit group will have: 

  • Guest lectures and coachings by Carlos Carrillo, Hannah Collins, and Tim Munro
  • Daily coachings: performers and composers will both coach daily with faculty in preparation for the world premiere of the new solo work on the final webcast concert. Composers will have the opportunity to coach with faculty on their piece and make minor revisions to the work leading up to the end-of-week premiere. Performers will also have the opportunity to coach on a short (up to 10 minute) contemporary solo piece of their choice, also to be performed on the final online concert.
  • Daily presentations and seminars: all attendees (composers and performers) will have daily opportunities to engage each other and faculty in discussion around music and beyond, such as career advice, business-focused topics, music tech, and the current political, societal, and artistic environment within which we all create. Attendees will also have the chance to present their work to other attendees in 30-minute slots each day, and also enjoy unstructured time to just hang out.
  • A premiere performance webcast: the new works, as well as contemporary solo works by each performer, will be prerecorded for presentation in a culminating webcast featuring short introductions with the composers and performers.


“Great way to connect and build sense of community.”

“We covered so much, I couldn’t have asked for more besides more time to talk!”

“I was amazed at how much I learned in such a short period of time everyday.”

“This was by far the most gratifying musical experience of recent memory! Thank you so, so much for making this happen. I would love to be a part of another session of this in the near future!!!”

“It’s very rare to find a space where it feels safe to explore new things, and it was just that. Very grateful to walk away with the personal connections I’ve forged.”

“Our Zoom campus was creative, encouraging, accepting, and exciting. You selected musicians who were equally beautiful, creative, and supportive. I cannot express how lucky I feel to have been part of this experience and to meet all these wonderful souls. This has been a challenging year and the intensive has provided a massive highlight for me.”


Four-time Grammy Award-winning cellist Nick Photinos is one of the most innovative and multifaceted cellists of our time. Described as a “commanding soloist” (ClevelandClassical.com) whose “virtuoso cello playing is scintillating” (Chicago Classical Review) and “outstanding for his exquisite precision” (SFCV.org), Photinos has collaborated and toured with an astounding array of artists including rock/pop artists Björk, Wilco, Bryce Dessner, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, film composer Gustavo Santaolalla, classical artists Dawn Upshaw, Philip Glass, the Bang on a Can All-Stars, and jazz artists including Sheila Jordan, Laurence Hobgood, Zach Brock, and Matt Ulery. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras including the Cleveland, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Toronto, Utah, and Atlanta Symphonies, the last with whom he recorded Jennifer Higdon’s On a Wire. He has performed across the globe including the Sydney Opera House, the Barbican in London, KBC Hall in Seoul, Carnegie Hall in New York City, Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles, and Red Rocks Amphitheatre outside Denver. In 2019 he reached millions of listeners on “Live from Here” with Chris Thile and on Netflix’s original movie The Two Popes. For 24 years he served as the founding cellist of Eighth Blackbird. Photinos’ numerous recordings span the Cedille, Nonesuch, New Amsterdam, Greenleaf, and Naxos labels. He recorded for Wilco on their Grammy-nominated album The Whole Love, and with Autumn Defense on their album Once Around. His debut solo album, Petits Artéfacts, “a bold solo debut from one of the most notable artists in contemporary music today” (PopMatters), was released on the New Amsterdam label in 2017. Nick is currently on the faculty of the Longy School of Music of Bard College, the Bang on a Can Summer Festival, the Chosen Vale International Cello Seminar, and performs in the Grossman Ensemble at the Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition. website

Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, composer Carlos Carrillo holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music (BM), Yale University (MM), and the University of Pennsylvania (Ph.D.). Dr. Carrillo is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Bearns Prize, the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, BMI and ASCAP awards. He has been commissioned by Music and the Anthology for the Da Capo Chamber Players, the New York Youth Symphony, and Concert Artists Guild. In 2004 he received a commission from the American Composers Orchestra, the second such work commissioned for ACO by the BMI Foundation, Inc./ Carlos Surinach Fund. Dr. Carrillo’s music has been performed at the American Composers Orchestra’s Sonido de las Americas Festival and the Casals Festival, and by Young Musician Foundation’s Debut Orchestra, Sequitur, Network for New Music, Prism Quartet, and the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra. In 2002, his symphonic work Cantares was featured at the inaugural “Synergy: Composer and Conductor” program presented by the Los Angeles Philharmonic and American Symphony Orchestra League. In 1998 he received one of the first Aaron Copland Awards from the Copland Heritage Association, and he was the 2001-2003 Van Lier Emerging Composer Fellow with the ACO. He has taught composition at DePauw University, Reed College, the Conservatory of Music in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He is currently an Associate Professor of Composition-Theory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. website

Cellist Hannah Collins is a dynamic performer who uses diverse forms of musical expression and artistic collaboration to build connections and community. Winner of the Presser Music Award and De Linkprijs for contemporary interpretation, she takes an active role in expanding the repertoire for the cello by commissioning and premiering solo works by composers such as Caroline Shaw and Timo Andres, and by co-creating interdisciplinary projects. Resonance Lines, her solo debut album released on Sono Luminus in September 2021, features music by Caroline Shaw, Benjamin Britten, Kaija Saariaho, and Thomas Kotcheff. Over the past decade, New Morse Code, her “remarkably inventive and resourceful duo” (Gramophone) with percussionist Michael Compitello, has developed projects responding to our society’s most pressing issues, including The Emigrants, a documentary chamber work by George Lam, and dwb (driving while black), a chamber opera by Roberta Gumbel and Susan Kander. They were recently named the inaugural grand prize winners of the Ariel Avant Impact Performance Prize which will support the development and touring of new works addressing sustainability goals and scientific innovation. Solo and chamber music performances have taken Hannah to festivals such as Orford Centre d’arts, Kneisel Hall, the Aldeburgh Festival, and Musique de Chambre à Giverny.  She frequently performs on modern and Baroque cello with The Knights, A Far Cry, Bach Aria Soloists, Grossman Ensemble, Quodlibet Ensemble, the Sebastians, and Trinity Baroque Orchestra. Hannah holds a degree in biomedical engineering from Yale University and earned graduate degrees in music from the Yale School of Music, the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, and the City University of New York. She currently teaches at the University of Kansas School of Music.  website (photo credit: John Paul Henry)

Tim Munro is a Chicago-based, triple-Grammy-winning musician. As a flutist, writer, broadcaster, and teacher, he treats audiences as equals, welcoming them into musical worlds with passion, intelligence, and humor. Tim was Flutist and co-Artistic Director of Eighth Blackbird from 2006-2015. He is the St Louis Symphony Orchestra’s Creative Partner, where he works as curator, broadcaster, writer, and speaker. Tim is the flutist for the University of Chicago’s Grossman Ensemble. Tim’s performances are “captivating”, “bravura”, and “charismatic” (The New York Times). His new EP on New Focus Recordings is Liminal Highway by Pulitzer Prize finalist Christopher Cerrone. The Wire calls the album a “compelling travelogue” where Tim’s “expansive artistry…evokes superbly the twin facets of driver and dreamer.” Emerging from pandemic isolation, Tim played in a trio with jazz trumpeter Peter Evans, joined a 12-flute all-star band at Carnegie Hall, and finally scratched his flute-rock itch. He is working on an immersive work for 30 unprepared performers with composer Alice Chance and director Julie Ritchey. website (photo credit: Joe Mazza)


(Central Time Zone, subject to change)

  • 10am – 2pm: 30 minute daily private coachings with each pair of performers/composers
  • 3pm – 4pm presentation by performers and composers. Each attendee will perform or present once for 30 minutes during the intensive, either performing or presenting a short work, with discussion encouraged.
  • 4 – 5pm faculty presentations and discussion
  • 5 – 6pm open discussion time (aka “happy hour”)


  • professional or pre-professional performer or composer
  • at least 21 years of age
  • reliable internet connection
  • devices that support both video chat via Zoom and recording your instrument with a microphone and camera


  • Wednesday December 1: applications due at 6pm CST
  • Friday December 3: acceptance notifications sent
  • Sunday December 5: full tuition due, final composer/performer pairings sent
  • Sunday December 5 – Sunday January 2: composers begin writing and are to be in touch with performers throughout process, working together to craft a new solo work
  • Sunday January 2: new composer pieces due to players
  • Sunday January 9 – Friday January 14: daily schedule followed: one lesson with coaches between 10am-2pm CDT, then 3pm-6pm CDT with everyone together
  • Saturday January 15: free day to make final presentation videos
  • Sunday January 16: Final webcast performance!


  • Submit your free application via the link below by Wednesday December 1, 6pm Central Time.
  • You will be asked to submit 2-3 recent, sub-10 minute videos of your performing or compositions as well as a short (three minute or less) video about why you want to attend the program and what topics you would most like to cover.
  • Once accepted, a link will be emailed where payment via Venmo or Chase Quickpay may be made. To secure a spot in the course, payment must be made in full by Sunday December 5. Payment is non-transferable and non-refundable except in cases of emergency as determined by Nick Photinos.
  • Tuition: $499


I play contrabass daxophone/nyckelharpa/pyrophone, can I still apply?

Yes! Because of the nature of this intensive with composers writing new solo pieces, performers on ANY instrument or voice can apply and will be equally considered. It’s a great opportunity to build new repertoire for your instrument! 

I’m a composer and performer, can I apply as both/either?

While you may indicate that you wish to be considered as either a performer or composer on the application, unfortunately due to time constraints and pairing inequities that have occurred in previous 1:2:1 sessions we are no longer able to offer the option of attending as both a composer and performer in a single session. If applying to be considered as either a composer or performer, you will be asked your preference as to what degree you wish to be considered in those categories, and will need to submit both performance and composition samples to support your application

I’m a composer, how long will I have to write the piece? 

Notifications will go out by December 5 and pieces will be due on January 2, so you will have roughly one month to compose a 5-10 minute work for solo performer with or without electronics (see below). 

I’m a composer, can I write a piece for solo instrument and backing track and/or electronics?

Absolutely, and is even encouraged, so long as the performer you are writing for is willing and has access to the proper equipment. In the application both performers and composers will be asked their preference to write or perform a work with backing media and/or electronics. 

I’m a performer, how many pieces will I be playing as part of this intensive?

Two: you’ll be learning a brand new piece written by a composer paired with you, as well as getting coached on an existing piece of recent (from the last 25 years) repertoire for your instrument, with or without electronics (see below) of up to 10 minutes duration. Both works will be videotaped and shown as part of the final concert. If you need advice on a solo piece, you may indicate that on the application.

I’m a performer, can I learn a solo piece during the intensive that has backing track and/or electronics?

Yes! This intensive is a GREAT way to dive into a piece like this, even if you have never done so. Please indicate the piece and what is required to perform it on the application form, and we will discuss the best way to make a stellar performance happen!

I’m a performer, can I play a solo piece I’ve written for my solo piece requirement?

Absolutely! This is encouraged, so long as it is 10 minutes or less.

I have attended or applied before, can I do so again?

Yes! We have had people attend up to three times (and counting!), and since each iteration of 1:2:1 has different guest faculty, the experience is different each time. If you have attended previously, you will not be required to submit samples or a video statement about why you’d like to come, but you will still need to fill out the rest of the application so we have the most up-to-date contact information.

I have another question, where can I ask it?

Email us at the “contact” link on the upper right hand side!


1:2:1 welcomes all composers and performers inclusive of race, gender, class, ethnicity, religion, and sexual orientation, and works to create an atmosphere of empathy, creativity, and openness. 1:2:1 celebrates the diversity of our faculty and student body as central to the shared experience of the intensive, recognizing that with greater diversity comes greater understanding and focus on a wider array of perspectives, solutions, and issues. Applicants and attendees are expected to share and uphold these same values.


1:2:1 began in the summer of 2020 during the height of the global coronavirus pandemic, and for many musicians one of the hardest parts of that time was the loss of community: meeting new people, making music with them, sharing ideas, and expanding who you are. 1:2:1 is one answer to that: while it was hard to make chamber music during that time, we CAN come together one-on-one, composer-to-performer, even at a great distance (we’ve had participants and faculty in Japan, Germany, Estonia, Puerto Rico, Canada, and throughout the US), to create new music, to meet new people, and to share ideas, jokes, memes, beers: all the things that make summer festivals so magical. 1:2:1 continues post-pandemic as a way to continue this growth while remaining affordable, fun, and with completely different guest faculty each time.

83 composers and performers have participated in 1:2:1 since it began in July 2020, creating 45 new works over seven festivals and performances, and you can see their work here to get an idea of just how creative they are. Guest faculty have included:

Matt Albert, violinist

Marcos Balter, composer

Molly Barth, flute

Vicky Chow, piano

Du Yun, composer

Haruka Fujii, percussion

Stacy Garrop, composer

Jennifer Higdon, composer

Dana Jessen, bassoon/improvisor

Nathalie Joachim, flutist/composer/vocalist

Jennifer Koh, violin

Yvonne Lam, violin

Doug Perkins, percussion

Todd Reynolds, violin/composer/improvisor/educator/technologist

Kamala Sankaram, composer

Toyin Spellman-Diaz, oboe

Ken Thomson, clarinet/composer

Nina C. Young, composer