Composition Competition

    Composers who are 21 years of age or under are invited to submit a new piece for Pentecost, suitable for upper voices. The piece can be for unison, SA or SSA choir, or for choir and congregation. The accompaniment may be piano and/or organ, or may be unaccompanied. Composers, if they wish, may include parts for a C instrument. The closing date is September 15 2018.

    The piece may be a hymn, psalm or motet. Hymn settings may be responsorial or strophic or another form suitable for the liturgy.

    There will be a single prize of €350 awarded for the best entry, and the winning piece will be performed by the Schola at the Confirmation services which take place in St Mary's Church, Navan during May 2019.

    For more details, see or
  • Composers who are 21 years of age or under

    That narrows the field. I wonder why the restriction is there. (I will, however, avoid speculating.) There can't be too many kids able to write well enough to merit earning 350 euros (a princely sum.)

    Thanked by 1CCooze
  • This is our second competition, the first held in 2016. The standard in that one, which was for a new piece for Advent or Christmas, went from pretty basic to remarkable. A variety of forms were seen by the judges, from congregational hymns (with and without refrain) to motets with ritornello, to quite complex choral pieces. We had sixteen entries, from 13 to 21 years old, from Korea to the US to Ireland. Three prizes were awarded, with two others being highly commended, and a further two commended. The restriction is there to provide an opportunity specifically for young composers. There are plenty of other competitions in choral (and liturgical) music that are wide open, and probably won by seasoned composers.
  • I would love to have a look at these compositions !
    Thanked by 1Casavant Organist
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 966
    Yes! Are you able to share recordings, scores, or even just samples of the winners?
  • A short sample of the winning piece from 2016 can be viewed at from 5:25 to 6.55.
    Thanked by 2Jahaza CHGiffen
  • Just a heads-up that the competition ended today and the results have been posted:

    Looking at the other submissions and the adjudication report, I'm not sure they made clear what they wanted. It looks like something congregational was desired in the end, but little mention was made of this preference prior to the submission date, and pretty much everyone including myself wrote exclusively for choir. I'm also unsure what "obvious references to the Spirit" are missing in Veni, Sancte Spiritus.

    It is unfortunate that more specific feedback was not given (especially in such a small contest) and that the pieces were not made available for public viewing after the end of the contest.
  • I suppose there's no harm in sharing my submission, now that the competition has ended and the results have been announced. I wrote it for SSA with organ playing the low voice and possibly accompanying the other three if needed, but I included text for phrasing purposes and, if possible, for the part to be sung by a male singer. I make no pretentions of quality or craftsmanship - use at your own risk. If nothing else, it was yet another useful learning exercise in imitative polyphony.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 7,996
    With a cursory review of yours, Schonbergian, I don’t see how first place was even considered in the running (if indeed the link I posted is truly the 1st place prize). Yours is at the level one would expect to see in a competition.