Composition commissions survey results

Friday 5 August 2011

The results of the survey of composition commission rates carried out by the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) are shown below. You may find them a useful reference point in setting your composition commission rates.

 

Average commission value

Average commission charge per minute of composition Range of composition charges per minute No. of responses
Choral (accompanied) 3,753 245 1 - 667 54
Choral (unaccompanied) 2,473 374 4 - 1,000 45
Choral (with orchestra) 12,119 443 33 - 1,500 21
Orchestra (symphony) 8,458 542 18 - 2,021 48
Orchestra (with soloists) 9,215 468 67 - 1,400 30
Orchestra (chamber) 6,352 370 48 - 1,333 44
Ensembles (large chamber) 4,974 263 13 - 1,000 45
Ensembles (small) 2,886 205 17 - 533 49
Ensembles (symphonic wind) 3,440 283 8 - 1,292 15
Duo 1,968 187 30 - 500 40
Solo 2,200 157 14 - 444 43
Brass band 2,810 223 10 - 656 14
Jazz orchestra 3,875 279 67 - 500 4
Jazz big band 3,667 135 33 - 182 6
Stage works 13,549 246 23 - 1,000 38
Electronica A 11,245 260 65 - 833 9
Electronica B 5,062 255 67 - 500 9
Electronica C 30,500 742 109 - 1,375 2

 

The survey was carried out between December 2010 and March 2011. There were 517 responses (mainly from composers but also from commissioners and publishers) about commission rates charged and paid over the period January 2005 – December 2009 across a range of different musical genres.

Points to bear in mind in setting commission rates

There is a very wide range of rates charged, even within each individual musical category, and you need to consider carefully where your rate for a particular commission lies within the general range for that category. In particular:

You need to ensure that, on the one hand, you do not under-charge for your services and, on the other, that you do not price yourself out of the market.

You may want to take account of price inflation since the 2005-09 period of this historical survey. For national inflation data, visit the Office for National Statistics (ONS) website.

You should also consider additional charges for “extras” such as: