Golden Hornet is a composer laboratory for the 21st century.





Audience in a theater clapping and watching a performance.

String Quartet Smackdown

A bracketed, NCAA-March-Madness style tournament competition which brings original string quartet compositions head-to-head in front of a live, participatory audience. A panel chooses sixteen finalist pieces from an international pool of submissions… you choose the champion!

Music performers on stage in front of a live audience.

ATX Composers Showcase

An intimate, SXSW Official concert featuring six new music and contemporary classical acts. Offered for badge holders and non-holders alike, the concert fosters exposure to groups leading the charge on revitalizing classical music for the modern age, all based here in Austin.

Young composers on stage holding flower bouquets and pointing at the camera.

Young Composer Concert

A six month skill-building experience inviting Austin-area youth ages 8 to 18 to compose original pieces and collectively produce a concert, all under the guidance of professional mentors. The collaborative process culminates in a public concert featuring a professional ensemble.

Music performers on stage

Commissioning Endeavors

Each of our annual commissioning endeavors is designed to enrich our local arts community, as well as have extended life beyond Austin, strengthening our city’s reputation as a source for high caliber, genre-bending new music. The endeavors alternate in focus each year.




Our latest commissioning endeavor provides a sonic vision of west texas and melds two musical languages.


our next commissioning endeavor

Dedicated to building bridges.

Our 2020 commissioning endeavor, MXTX, embraces a hybrid musical approach that empowers artists to collaborate across artistic, cultural, geographic, and political lines. Artists from both sides of the Rio Grande will come together and use the power and depth of the language of music to explore the issues where words often fail us.