1:2:1 Winds

1:2:1 WINDS

an online new music intensive for wind players and composers

led by Grammy Award-winning cellist and educator Nick Photinos

October 25 – November 1

UPDATE: the deadline to apply has now been extended to Wednesday September 23!

Note: in the case of numerous exceptional applicants as in the previous iteration of 1:2:1, we will run an additional session on November 8-15. Applicants will be asked in the application about availability and preference for both sessions

An online new music intensive for wind players and composers

led by Grammy Award-Winning cellist and educator Nick Photinos

October 25 – November 1, 2020

Are you a:

Wind player 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 wind players, developing a new work quickly from conception through performance, all while building your community and coaching with esteemed composers and performers?

This October 25 – November 1, join Nick Photinos and special guest faculty Stacy Garrop, Ken Thomson, and Toyin Spellman-Diaz for 1:2:1:

  • 1-to-1 pairing of composers and wind players
  • 1 month for composers to write 1 new piece for solo wind
  • 1 week for solo wind players to learn 1 new piece
  • 1-to-1 coaching and masterclasses with esteemed faculty
  • 1 week to put 1 premiere concert together on FaceBook Live

1:2:1 is a one-week online intensive pairing solo wind players and composers to create new work and new communities. Limited to only 16 people (eight pairs of composers and wind players), this close-knit group will have:

  • Daily coachings: wind players and composers will both coach daily with faculty in preparation for the world premiere of the new solo work on the final FaceBook Live concert. Wind players will also have the opportunity to coach on a short (up to 10 minute) contemporary solo wind piece of their choice, also to be performed on the final online 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.
  • Daily presentations and seminars: all attendees (composers and performers) will have daily opportunities to engage each other and faculty in discussion around pertinent issues of the day including and beyond music, 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 enjoy planned unstructured time to engage each other as well.
  • Guest lectures and coachings by Stacy Garrop, Toyin Spellman-Diaz, and Ken Thomson.
  • A premiere performance webcast: the new works, as well as contemporary solo wind works by each performer, will be prerecorded for presentation on Facebook Live in a culminating webcast featuring short introductions with the composers and performers.

Testimonials from previous attendees:

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

“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!”

“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.”

Meet the faculty

Four-time Grammy Award-winner Nick Photinos is one of the most innovative and multifaceted cellists and educators of our time. An ardent advocate for new music, Photinos has collaborated, toured, and recorded with a vast array of artists including 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, and performed across the globe including the Sydney Opera House, the Barbican in London, KBC Hall in Seoul, and in the US from Disney Hall to Carnegie Hall Carnegie Hall in New York City. Photinos formerly served as the founding cellist and Artistic Director of Eighth Blackbird.

Stacy Garrop‘s music is centered on dramatic and lyrical storytelling, by taking audiences on sonic journeys – some simple and beautiful, others complicated and dark – depending on the needs and dramatic shape of the story. Stacy is the first Emerging Opera Composer of Chicago Opera Theater’s new Vanguard Initiative for 2018-2020, composing two chamber operas with Chicago librettist Jerre Dye. She recently completed a 3-year composer-in-residence position with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra. Stacy’s catalog covers a wide range, with works for orchestra, opera, oratorio, wind ensemble, choir, art song, and various sized chamber ensembles including string quartet, piano trio, and saxophone works. She has won numerous prizes and has been commissioned and performed by the Albany Symphony, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Grant Park Music Festival Orchestra, and Minnesota Orchestra; by Capitol Saxophone Quartet, Gaudete Brass Quintet, and Kronos Quartet; and by Chanticleer, Chicago a cappella, and Volti. Upcoming commissions include the St. Louis Symphony, Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, The Crossing, Dallas Symphony Orchestra Musicians Chamber Music Series, and the Reading Youth Symphony.

Oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz grew up surrounded by her parent’s enormous record collection in Washington, DC. It was there she absorbed the many layers of classical music’s beauty and the inspiring and uniting potential of the world’s diverse cultural landscape. An original member of Imani Winds, Ms. Spellman-Diaz has built her career as a champion of contemporary chamber music. Along with her Imani Winds colleagues, she is devoted to discovering new and diverse musical voices and cultures to increase and enhance the woodwind quintet repertoire. She has also collaborated with some of today’s most influential chamber music ensembles, including Alarm Will Sound, the Antara Ensemble and Camerata Pacifica. Her orchestral career includes performances with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Civic Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra

Clarinetist/Saxophonist/composer Ken Thomson is a staple of New York City’s contemporary music and jazz communities, widely regarded for his ability to blend a rich variety of influences and styles into his own musical language while maintaining a voice unmistakably his own. Thomson has a growing catalog of music written for ensembles of differing sizes, and has toured with and released a number of albums with groups that he has created. He is the clarinetist for the Bang on a Can All-Stars and musical director for the Asphalt Orchestra and his group Slow/Fast, the latter praised by The New York Times for their “intricate long-form compositions” that Thomson wrote. Sextet, one of his most recent projects combining the sounds of jazz and contemporary music, has toured across the US and Europe and garnered Top Recordings of 2018 from the websites Second Inversion and AnEarful. He has two full-length CDs available of his chamber music compositions: in 2013 with JACK Quartet (Thaw) and in 2016 with cellist Ashley Bathgate and pianist Karl Larson (Restless). He is also active as a freelance clarinetist and saxophonist, performing with Ensemble Signal, International Contemporary Ensemble, Novus, and more. He is on faculty on the Bang on a Can Summer Institute, is a D’Addario Woodwinds artist, and endorses F. Arthur Uebel clarinets.

Sample daily schedule (Central Time Zone)

  • 10am – 3pm: 40 min 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 min during the intensive, either performing (wind players) or presenting a short work (composers), with discussion to follow.
  • 4 – 5pm faculty presentations and discussions
  • 5 – 6pm open discussion time


  • professional or pre-professional wind player 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

Timeline (UPDATED)

  • Wednesday September 23: applications due
  • Sunday September 27: final composer/performer duos decided on, notifications sent of acceptance, composers begin writing and are to be in touch with performers throughout process
  • Tuesday September 29: full tuition due
  • Sunday October 18: new composer pieces due to players
  • Sunday October 25 – Friday October 30: daily schedule followed, approximately 10am-6pm each day
  • Saturday October 31: free day to make final presentation videos
  • Sunday November 1: Final FaceBook Live performance!

Note: If there is a November 8-15 session, all September dates still apply, with new composer pieces due on November 1, daily schedule from November 8-13, November 14 free to make final presentation video, and final FaceBook Live performance on November 15.

To apply

  • Submit your free application via the link below by September 23, 6pm Central Time (UPDATED).
  • You will be asked to submit up to three 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 most want 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 September 29 (UPDATED). Payment is non-transferable and non-refundable except in cases of emergency.

Tuition: $499


I’m a composer. How long will I have to write the piece? (UPDATED)

Notifications will go out by September 27 and pieces will be due on October 18, so you will have exactly three weeks to compose a 5-10 minute work for solo wind player with or without electronics (as you wish).

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

Yes! This is even encouraged, so long as the performer you are writing for is willing and has the right equipment.

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

If you are a composer, yes. If a performer, only if your instrument group is being featured. Please do make a new application to be considered.

I have another question, where can I ask it?

You can email us below!