Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog. Please use the chronological tool in the right-hand column to find specific results.
QUICKNOTES: Although The American Prize does not usually provide written evaluations to semi-finalists, some semi-finalist composers will receive in their certificate packets short comments, suggestions or overall impressions made during the judging. We hope they will prove valuable. All finalists receive written evaluations from a member of The American Prize judging panel.
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The American Prize in Composition—Choral octavos (professional division), 2018-19
The American Prize winner:
Can We Sing the Darkness to Light? Psallite; In the Beginning; Stars; A Mighty Fortress is our God
Paul David Thomas
Out Damned Spot
|Paul David Thomas|
and choral ensembles of all skill levels. Additionally, Paul is an active new music performer, regularly performing his own works for accordion and computer. Originally from northeastern Ohio, Paul holds degrees in composition from Bowling Green State University (MM) and the University of
North Texas (PhD). Paul's choral music is published through Hal Leonard, Carl Fischer, and BriLee Press.
3rd Place (there was a tie):
Three Nocturnes (Ballade to the Moon; Star Sonnet; Lullaby)
3rd Place (there was a tie):
Finalist Honorable Mention:
Sound Beach NY
My Name is Lamiya—Don't Call me “Refugee”
After recently awarded a performance of “I’ll Fly Away” in the International Society of Contemporary Music’s New Music Days 2017 in Vancouver, BC, Michael is newly published by Peermusic Classical.
Michael’s most recent works include the commissioned work “The Road That Has No End", “Nigra Sum", and the final edition of Requiem Dies Magna, premiered by Long Island Voices and Sound Symphony under Michael’s direction in 2017. Michael is currently under commission by the Women’s Voices Chorus of Chapel Hill, NC. for “Only Time to Love: Gaaggee Zaag’aa" and The First United Methodist Church of Pittsburgh with Calvary United Methodist Church for the former’s 125th anniversary celebration, for “Awake!”.
Current choral projects include the “Child Refugee Awareness" Choral Consortium Project and “The Great American Choral Reef Challenge”, both actively recruiting choirs and the latter to be premiered on and around Earth Day, 2019. With these songs, Michael hopes to bring attention to the children of the global refugee crisis as well as the urgency to respond to climate change.
Michael has recently launched three additional consortiums, one for Women’s and Treble Choirs at the Collegiate and High School levels called "Radium Girl" Commissioning Consortium which will be written to bring attention to women’s and worker’s rights, the commissioning choirs of The Unarmed Child, to be premiered during the 2019-2020 choral season, and the commissioning choirs of Mass of the Refugee for SATB choir, violin, cello, oud, piano and percussion for state premieres in 2020-2021.
Originally from Long Island, New York, Michael grew up as a baritone saxophonist and as accompanist and a tenor in the school’s chorus. Michael attended Ithaca College (BM ’94), for piano performance and music education, and Queen’s College (MM ’99) for music education.
Michael is also active in advocating for the transgender community. “It is my fervent wish to spread knowledge and understanding of the transgender community through guest speaking and by simply being present in the lives of the talented musicians and artists surrounding me.”