Tuesday, July 2, 2019

WINNERS: composers (major choral works), 2018-19

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, chief judge, is honored to announce the winners, runners-up and honorable mentions of The American Prize in Composition, 2018-19, major choral works. Congratulations!

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.

REMINDER: Because of many requests from artists with late spring and early summer performances, The American Prize 2019-20 will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of
Monday, July 1, 2019, with extensions available by email request. (theamericanprize@gmail.com)

Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until  
Monday, August 5, 2019. (Please note that although the dates on the application forms may not be changed, rest assured that your materials will be accepted if sent by the new deadline dates in the respective contest areas.)

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Composition—(major choral works), 2018-19

The American Prize winner:
Nilo Alcala
North Hollywood CA
Manga Pakalagian (Ceremonies)   

Nilo Alcala
Nilo Alcala’s works have been performed in Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Americas. He is the first Philippine-born composer to receive the COPLAND HOUSE Residency Award, as well to be commissioned and premiered by the Grammy-nominated Los Angeles Master Chorale.

Alcala’s awards include the POLYPHONOS Young Composer Award from The Esoterics (Seattle, WA), IGNITE Commissioning Competition of  C4: The Choral Composer/Conductor Collective (New York, NY),  Asian Composers League Young Composer Award (Israel), the very first Ani ng Dangal (Harvest of Honor) from the Philippine President, and Musical America Worldwide's Artist of the Month. Music His commissions include the National Music Competition for Young Artists; Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival; Korean Ministry of Culture; Asia-Europe Foundation; Metro Manila Concert Orchestra, Manila Symphony Orchestra, San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra, and other ensembles. Notable collaborations include performances by the World Youth Choir (2018 & 2019), and the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra. Alcala's works have been performed by  winning ensembles in international choral competitions as well as choral symposiums and festivals around the world.

Alcala was composer-in-residence of the Philippine Madrigal Singers which premiered his works in international competitions such as the 2006 Florilege Vocal de Tours (France); the 2007 and 2017 European Grand Prix for Choral Singing (Italy); and events including the American Choral Directors Association National Conference (Dallas, TX); the 9th World Symposium on Choral Music (Argentina); and America Cantat 7 (Colombia). In 2017, The group also released a CD and digital album of Alcala’s choral works entitled ONOMATOPOEIA: The Choral Works of Nilo Alcala.

An Asian Cultural Council grantee, Alcala is also a Billy Joel Fellow at Syracuse University where he earned an MMus in Composition and received the Irene L. Crooker Music Award. He holds a BM in Composition at the University of the Philippines, graduating Magna cum laude and recipient of Gawad Chancelor Natatanging Mag-aaral (Chancellor’s Outstanding Student Award).

Committed to educating the next generation, Alcala was composer-mentor  for Pasadena Master Chorale’s “Listening to the Future” program (2016-2019) for promising high school composers.

Commissioned and premiered by the Los Angeles Master Chorale for its "Made in LA" concert in 2015, MANGÁ PAKALAGIÁN (Ceremonies) is a multi movement suite for choir and kulintang ensemble that takes inspiration from the Maguindanao people of Southern Philippines and how they use traditional music to punctuate or celebrate events in the community, thus elevating these events into a ceremony.

The kulintang is the foremost traditional percussion ensemble in Maguindanao and is a set of graduated metallic gongs which plays the melody. Kulintang also refers to the traditional repertoire as well as the whole percussion ensemble itself. The Maguindanaons play a specific traditional kulintang piece for every occasion, ritual, or ceremony. Featured in Manga Pakalagian are three of these ceremonies, with actual traditional kulintang music as preludes.

The world premiere on November 15, 2015 at the Disney Concert Hall featured the LA Master Chorale (Grant Gershon, Artistic Director) together with the late master kulintang artist Danongan Danny Kalanduyan with his group SUBLA on the kulitang ensemble.


2nd Place:
Lansing McLoskey
Miami FL
Zealot Canticles

Lansing McLoskey
Lansing McLoskey’s Zealot Canticles won the 2019 GRAMMY for Best Choral Performance. His music has been performed in 21 countries on six continents, and has won more than two dozen national/international awards, including the 2016 American Prize, the 2016 Robert Avalon International Composition Prize, the 2018 Boston Choral Ensemble Choral Commission Competition, the 2018 Copland House Award, and two awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has been commissioned by the Fromm Foundation, NEA, Meet The Composer, Pew Charitable Trusts, the International Joint Wind Quintet Project, and numerous ensembles. Recent commissions include a Barlow Commission for a full-length opera for Guerilla Opera (Boston); Copland House; ensemberlino vocale (Berlin); the New Spectrum Foundation for violinist Miranda Cuckson; Kammerkoret NOVA (Oslo, Norway); Passepartout Duo (Berlin); and Splinter Reeds. Professor at the Frost School of Music, his music is released on Albany Records, WergoSchallplatten, Capstone, Tantara, LAWO, Equilibrium, and Beauport Classics. McLoskey is an avid surfer, skateboarder, and cyclist. www.lansingmcloskey.com

3rd Place: 
Stephen E. Caldwell
Fayetteville AR
Pre-Existing Condition 

Stephen E. Caldwell
Dr. Stephen Caldwell is Director of Choral Activities at the University of Arkansas. Since his arrival at Arkansas in 2012, he has twice been awarded the Associated Student Government's “Top 10 Most Outstanding Faculty Award” (2014-2015, 2016-2017), he has received “The Golden Tusk” from the Division of Student affairs for “going above and beyond, and helping to make campus life better for everyone,” the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette named Dr. Caldwell as one of 2017's “Top 10 Artistic People to Watch,” and he was chosen as a 2018 ACDA International Conducting Fellow. His original, award-winning compositions and arrangements have been performed throughout the world. His composition, “Since we loved,” is published in the NCCO Choral Series with ECS Music.  He holds degrees from the University of Northern Colorado, Temple University, and Rutgers University.

Finalist Honorable Mention:
Judith Cloud
Flagstaff AZ
Feet of Jesus

Judith Cloud
Composer Judith Cloud is well known for her vocal writing that originates out of her own experiences as an accomplished mezzo–soprano soloist. Her songs have been described as “eminently singable, displaying a rich harmonic palate with an audience-entrancing sense of vocal line that is both dramatic and beautiful.” A composer of instrumental works, as well, Cloud composed HiJinx! for Peter Wright, principal clarinet with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra for the 2014-15 season. In 2012 Summit Records released an art song CD entitled Letting Escape a Song. Other recordings include Spirituals (BIS-Northern Lights) with her cantata set to Langston Hughes poetry, Feet of Jesus, for soprano and baritone soloists, soprano saxophone, chorus and organ, recorded by the Saint Jacob’s Kammerchor in Stockholm. In October 2009, Cloud was awarded first prize for the prestigious Sorel Medallion Competition with her work Anacreontics for chorus and guitar, with a performance in Zankel Hall-Carnegie.

Finalist Honorable Mention:
Kyle Kindred
Humble TX
Canciones de Alfaro   

Kyle Kindred
The melodramatic and occasionally theatrical works of Kyle Kindred (b.1978) have been performed throughout the US, Canada, Japan, Europe, and South America. Kindred is a two-time finalist in the American Prize competition. Recent projects include Symphony No. 1 for Winds and Percussion: The Remnant and A Longmont Overture, an orchestral commission by the Longmont Symphony of Longmont, Colorado. In 2015, Kindred was commissioned to compose a Spanish oratorio for the musicians of the 2015 Encuentro de Jóvenes Músicos Bolivianos and Sam Houston State University. Kindred is a featured composer in the GIA Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series as well as a contributing author for GIA Publications’ Composers on Composing for Band, Volume 4, edited by Mark Camphouse.  His principal teachers were Walter Mays, Dean Roush, Donald Grantham, and 2012 Pulitzer Prize-winner Kevin Puts. Kindred is currently Associate Professor and Director of Composition Studies at Sam Houston State University.

Finalist Honorable Mention:
John Muehleisen
Mukilteo WA
The Field   

John Muehleisen
John Muehleisen’s 150+ vocal and choral works have been described as “masterful …imaginatively harmonized…beautifully realized…and brilliantly crafted.” He has been Composer-in-Residence for Opus 7 Vocal Ensemble since 1996, for the Dale Warland Singers (2003–2004), and for Choral Arts Northwest (2011-2012 and 2016–2017). He has also received commissions from Conspirare, The Esoterics, Harvard Glee Club, Northwest Girlchoir, Seattle Girl’s Choir, Seattle Pro Musica, and Volti. More than 80 of his compositions have been recorded commercially, and his works have been performed throughout North America, Europe, and Asia by esteemed conductors including John Alexander, Anton Armstrong, and Craig Hella Johnson. His oratorios about compassion (Pietà) and WWI (But Who Shall Return Us Our Children – A Kipling Passion) have received more than 20 performances. Awards include the 1988 Louisville Orchestra Composition Prize, Third Place in the 2013 American Prize in Professional Choral Composition, and the 2014 Dale Warland Singers Commissioning Award.


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