Each year, the New York Composers Circle sponsors the John Eaton Memorial Competition. In 2015, the name was changed to honor our late Honorary Member John Eaton. The competition is open to composers of all ages who live in the New York metropolitan area (New York City, New Jersey, Connecticut), with the exception of current NYCC members and prior NYCC contest winners. The winning composition is performed at one of the NYCC’s concerts during the following season, and the winner also receives one year’s free membership in the Composers Circle.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the New York Composers Circle is temporarily suspending the competition until such a time that we may safely resume the process of presenting public concerts. Winners of the previous two year’s competition, Ecstacy for clarinet, violin, cello, piano by Cheng Jin Koh, and Picking Up Where I Left Off for violin and piano by composer Jeffrey Niederhoffer will be performed on a concert when it is safe to do so.

The New York Composers Circle reserves the right to not select a winner in any given year, or may chose to award multiple winners as the selection committee deems appropriate. The NYCC has awarded honorable mentions to works that were deemed notable but did not earn the highest winning score. All decisions of the selection committiee are final and may not be challenged.


2020: Jeffrey Niederhoffer for Picking Up Where I Left Off for violin and piano. Honorable mentions for 2020: David Hier for String Quartet in Two Movements and Zach Gulaboff Davis for Prism for piano trio.

2019: Cheng Jin Koh for Ecstasy for Piano Quartet. Honorable mentions for 2019: Derek Cooper, for Kill James for bassoon, cello, and piano, Michael Salvatore Grebla, for Sfidare for string quartet, and Ursula Kwong-Brown, for Unwinding II for string quartet.

2018: Gilad Cohen, for Three Goat Blues for string quartet

2017: Andrey Komanetsky, for String Quartet in Five Movements

2016: No prize awarded.

2015: Ross Griffey, Tied by a Chance Bond Together, for violin and piano

2014: Vladimir Del Orbe, Contextual Enigma forclarinet, double bass, and piano. Honorable mentions for 2014: José Beviá, Trio No. 3 for Violin, Cello, and Piano; Jonathan Bingham, Quartet for Clarinet, Violin, Cello, and Piano

2013: Eric Segerstrom, Two Poems, for piano trio. Honorable mention for 2013: David Brooks, 'Metamorphosis’ Variations, for prepared piano

2012: Jesse Diener-Bennett, Ninth for Two, for flute and violin

2011: Max Giteck Duykers, Glass Blue Cleft, for string quartet

2010: Scott D. Miller, Polychrome Stride, for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano

2009: Elizabeth Lim, Wafting, for string quartet

2008: Co-winners Robert S. Cohen, The Mysterious Transformation of Johann B., for clarinet and 6 percussionists, Brian Fennelly "Sigol” for Two for two cellos

2007: Dana Dimitri Richardson, Ballade, for piano. Honorable mentions for 2007: Steve Cohen, Serenade for String Quartet, Marc-Antonio Consoli, Tre per Due for flute, clarinet, and piano, and Alex Temple, Her Name Was Renée for clarinet, percussion, double bass, and piano