Grammy Award for Best Classical Contemporary Composition

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Grammy Award for Best Classical Contemporary Composition
Awarded forquality classical contemporary compositions
CountryUnited States
Presented byNational Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
First awarded1961
Last awarded2017

The Grammy Award for Best Classical Contemporary Composition was first awarded in 1961. This award was not presented from 1967 to 1984.

The award has had several minor name changes:

  • From 1961 to 1962 the award was known as Best Contemporary Classical Composition
  • In 1963 it was awarded as Best Contemporary Composition
  • In 1965 it was awarded as Best Composition by a Contemporary Composer
  • In 1966 and 1964 it was awarded as Best Composition by a Contemporary Classical Composer
  • In 1985 it was awarded as Best New Classical Composition
  • From 1986 to 1994 it was again awarded as Best Contemporary Composition
  • From 1995 to 2011 it was again awarded as Best Classical Contemporary Composition
  • In 2012 the category was renamed into Best Contemporary Classical Composition

The Grammy is awarded to the composer(s) of a classical piece composed in the last 25 years, and released for the first time during the eligibility year. From 2009 onwards, if the award goes to an opera composition, both the composer and the librettist (if applicable) receive the Grammy.

Years reflect the year in which the Grammy Awards were presented, for works released in the previous year.


  • 2018
  • Jennifer Higdon for Viola Concerto, performed by Roberto Diaz, Giancarlo Geurrero & the Nashville Symphony
  • Nominees:
    • Zhou Tian for Concerto for Orchestra, performed by Louis Langrée & the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
    • Adam Schoenberg for Picture Studies, performed by Michael Stern & the Kansas City Symphony
    • Tigran Mansurian for Requiem, performed by Alexander Liebreich, Florian Helgath, the RIAS Kammerchor & the Münchener Kammerorchester
    • Richard Danielpour for Songs of Solitude, performed by Thomas Hampson, Giancarlo Guerrero & the Nashville Symphony

  • Nominees:
    • Mason Bates (composer) for Anthology of Fantastic Zoology, performed by Riccardo Muti & Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    • Jennifer Higdon (composer) and Gene Scheer (librettist) for Cold Mountain, performed by Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Jay Hunter Morris, Emily Fons, Isabel Leonard, Nathan Gunn & The Santa Fe Opera
    • Christopher Theofanidis for Bassoon Concerto, performed by Martin Kuuskmann, Barry Jekowsky & the Northwest Sinfonia
    • C.F. Kip Winger for Conversations with Nijinsky, performed by Martin West & the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra






  1. ^ "2016 Grammy Awards: Complete list of nominees". Los Angeles Times. December 7, 2015. Retrieved January 18, 2016.
  2. ^ Oteri, Frank J. (December 7, 2015). "About Those 2016 Grammy Nominations". NewMusicBox. Retrieved January 18, 2016.
  3. ^ "Grammys 2015: Complete list of winners and nominees". Los Angeles Times. February 8, 2015. Retrieved August 2, 2015.
  4. ^ a b Paget, Clive (February 13, 2013). "Classical Grammy Awards 2013". Limelight. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  5. ^ Ng, David (February 13, 2011). "Grammy Awards: Daugherty's 'Metropolis Symphony' and Verdi's 'Requiem' top classical Grammy awards". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  6. ^ Dunkle, David N. (February 2, 2010). "Philadelphia composer Jennifer Higdon scores a Grammy". The Patriot-News. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  7. ^ "The 1995 Grammy Winners". The New York Times. March 3, 1995. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  8. ^ Cariaga, Daniel (March 2, 1994). "The 36th Annual Grammy Awards : Classical : Dual Awards for Chicago Symphony". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 18, 2015.