The Olympias Foundation

The Olympias Foundation is open to improvising composers who incorporate classical improvisation in their works.

Members gain help, including financial, in promoting controlled improvisation, but must be based on standard classical notation. Using jazz (style or notation) is not permitted in Olympias-supported pieces.

Membership is by live examination, initially consisting of keyboard performance of all the following improvisations:

  1. Strict 12-tone contrapuntal improvisation,
  2. Academic baroque fugues in 3 and 4 parts,
  3. 3-movement sonata,
  4. Free improvisation in the composer’s style/idiom.

Standard music-notation of motives for these improvisations will be handed to candidates FIVE minutes before each improvisation; the candidate may elect to have a break between improvisations as long as all four are performed on the same day; either piano or organ may be used, at the candidate’s choice, for any two of the improvisatons, but at least two must be on the piano (in order that colouristic effects are not used throughout as a main ingredient).

For further information, please contact members in your own country: in England this is Malcolm Hill (see contact details above).