Thanks for wanting to contribute to this project! Here’s information on how to help:

  1. Identify a contemporary music festival or concert series that you think should be added to the corpus. I encourage you to add data for concerts that are geographically close to you. “Contemporary” is fairly ambiguous, so use your best judgement. Many of these concerts will primarily program recent music but occasionally include older music too. That’s okay.Not sure where to start? Check out the Tracking page for a list of festivals already identified that already have data added to the corpus or we would like to include.

    Pro Tip: Have a festival you particularly like? Sign up to regularly provide performance data for them. Just contact me!

  2. Copy the headers from the data template¬†and paste them into your own spreadsheet (Google Sheets is preferred due to Excel messing with diacritc markings when it saves the file). Know that you’re eventually going to need to save the file in a .csv format.

    Pro Tip: Feel free to save a copy of the template in your own Drive. Just go to: File->Make a Copy.

  3. Fill in the spreadsheet with performance data following this format. Bold fields are required and all others are optional.
    • Composer: Last name, First name
    • Piece: Capitalized like in the program. If the piece comes from a larger work, please try to add this data like “Big work. Piece of work.” For example, a singer is performing two songs from Robert Beaser’s “Mountain Songs” cycle. You should record these separately as “Mountain Songs. House Carpenter.” and “Mountain Songs. Cindy.” If the entire song cycle was being performed then it should just be entered as “Mountain Songs.”
    • Festival: The commonly occurring name, meaning if it’s normally known by an acronym, use that. Otherwise, spell it out.
    • University Sponsored: Y/N
    • Performance Date: MM/DD/YYYY
    • Composition Date: YYYY
    • Instrumentation: Instrument A [# if greater than 1]; Instrument B [# if greater than 1]; etc.

      Pro Tip: We’re trying to keep the instrument list standardized using Library of Congress Subject Headings. If in doubt, check the instruments already listed in the database. If nothing listed there is appropriate, use what you think it should be and it will be added to the database.

    • Premiere: Is this particular performance a premiere? If yes, just include the broadest premiere (e.g., Piece A is being performed as a West Coast, California, and Los Angeles Premiere. Just list West Coast Premiere). If not a premiere, leave blank.
    • Notes: Any additional information that you might think is helpful, such as being co-composed. Currently not used frequently.
  4. Email the completed .csv file to Scott Stone ( with the subject line “RMPDB Contribution.”

Pro Tip: Make sure you always finish a particular concert. Don’t just record part of it on your sheet and then submit or there’s a good chance that remaining information will never be added.

Finally, rest easy knowing that you’re helping to build a brand new corpus of information that will always be openly accessible to all.