This is what they've announced in their blog
We’ve been meaning to do this for bloody ages, but it’s finally happening: 8bb’s first ever composition competition!!!!!
This will be an annual competition for the best submitted work for sextet. One winner will receive $1000 cash, a day to work with eighth blackbird on the winning piece, a performance at a Chicago studio concert, a recording for website or promotional use and $500 travel and lodging reimbursement.
eighth blackbird tours a small repertoire of new compositions each season, performing each work many times. Few new works are added to the group’s repertoire each year, with the unfortunate result that it is impossible to keep up with the volume of unsolicited scores and recordings that the group receives annually. In order to unearth undiscovered gems and to give something back to the composers that submit examples of their work, the ensemble is thrilled to inaugurate this annual composition competition.
Applications must be received by eighth blackbird by May 1, 2010. Participants may be citizens of any country, and there is no age limit.
very interesting for commission system in 21st century