Royal Birmingham Conservatoire:
Andrew Downes
Performance Prize

Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Concert Hall where the Andrew Downes Performance Prize takes place. Photo by Elliott Brown

Well-respected as a composer around the world, the prize requires entrants to perform a programme of Andrew Downes’s music along with that of other British composers born after 1949, as they compete to win an impressive cash prize and recital opportunity. 

Next competition date: 
Wednesday 14th March, 2022

More details on the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire website


  1. Date of competition: 4th March 2020 from 19:00 – 22:00 in the Recital Hall
  2. Closing date for entry: 5th February 2020
  3. Open to all vocal, instrumental and conducting undergraduates (except first years) and postgraduates. Open to soloists and ensembles
  4. In exceptional circumstances, groups including a recent graduate(s) may be permitted to enter. It is the ensemble's responsibility to ensure that permission is sought from the competition organiser before their application is accepted 
  5. Students should submit programmes of 40 minutes to include at least 12 minutes of music by Andrew Downes; the rest of the programme should be of music by British composers born after 1949
  6. Where there is no suitable work by Andrew Downes (e.g. there are no large scale works for trombone, bassoon or trumpet), it is acceptable to transcribe other works by him
  7. The Organiser will select a programme of around 30 minutes that will include the Downes’ composition
  8. A preliminary round is held if necessary
  9. An opportunity is sought for the winner to perform all or part of the programme in one of the Conservatoire’s concert series.

Past winners:

2014: The Belgrave String Quartet, performing String Quartet No.1

2015: Andrew Randall, baritone, performing Casterbridge Fair Song Cycle

2016: Domonkos Csabay, pianist, performing 7 Preludes for Piano

2017: Edward Leung, pianist, performing Piano Sonata No.1

2020: Curzon Brass, performing Suite for Brass Quintet No.1

Return to 'About' Andrew Downes

If you have performed in any of Andrew Downes' works or come to listen, please share your experiences in the Premieres Blog! Also see what others have said. Thank you so much for your contribution.