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Check In On Compositions, Awards, Commissions Summer 2013

Do you work at composing in the summer?  Have you written anything new, made a sale on the showcase or got a new commission?  Speak out and be proud.  We are all here to support each other and how will we know your success if you don't share it!   Updates on former announcements are also welcome!
What have you done on YOUR summer vacation?  Links to your new works are also appreciated.
Replies (27): Threaded | Chronological
on August 1, 2013 10:51am
Well, I had open heart, double bypass surgery on 7-10. It was preemptive, so there was no heart damage. Ironically, the same day I entered the hospital, I received notification that I had won the 2013 American Prize for composition, chamber music division, for my "Introspections" music for two classical guitars! Talk about yin and yang!
Applauded by an audience of 4
on August 1, 2013 11:11am
Brilliant news! Congratulations, Michael - and best wishes for your continued good health and happiness!
on August 1, 2013 11:39am
Isn't that the way it goes!?    Nothing like success to heal the soul but I hope the excitement was good for the ticker.  Congratulations on sailing through the surgery and the prize.  Way to go Michael!
on August 1, 2013 1:44pm
Fantastic, Michael! And keep getting better!!
on August 1, 2013 2:50pm
Michael, I'm delighted to learn about your prize, especially when you are in need of some good luck.  My hope is that you feel better SOON!
on August 2, 2013 2:42am
Michael, I hope you are recovering swiftly...and thank you for your hauntingly beautiful work for two guitars, which won The American Prize this season, the first year the competition has had a category for chamber music. Bravo and all best.
David Katz, chief judge
The American Prize
on August 1, 2013 1:13pm
Thanks for asking, again.   I just finished, or refinished, an overture for full orchestra:  "Holy Day Overture", 15 minutes, various recording excerpts linked from and the whole piece (15 minutes) at
Working on a piece for piano quartet.   By the end of August I should have had a Schubert year, around 90 minutes of music, many many pieces composed.
After several years of personal tragedy and hermit life, these past 12 months I've been getting back into both composing and communicating about the music.  The notion of "intonalism", writing notes with very specific intonation indications, has been reinvigorating; now it seems anything is writable, whether for chorus, orchestra, keyboard, or chamber ensemble.
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 1, 2013 1:46pm
I, too, have been a bit hermit-like in the past few years, and have devoted myself to my prose/poetry rather than music. Somehow, this organization reached me and pulled me out, and I, in turn, are pulling out old pieces that need some fresh air, and have been writing new. Thanks to all here for your wonderful conversations and inspiration!
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 3, 2013 7:16am
William and Dianna,
    Welcome back to the populous world.  I think it is a precious gift to come through tragedy with artistic expression as a tool to heal and share our lives.  Composers and other artists are truly blessed.
William I listened to "Holy Day Overturte."  It is beautiful.  If you just finished where did you get such a wonderful recording?  Sorry if you already shared about this.
on August 2, 2013 5:13am
Haven't done any composing this summer, but it appears that a second (and maybe a third) of my SSA set will be performed this next year.  Of course, the maybe is sort of my favorite, but that's life.
Cheers to all.
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 2, 2013 7:28am
Good to hear that all are writing! It's so fun to think of so many new pieces being written all over the country.
It's been a big summer for me. I had decided that this would be my last year singing with the male vocal ensemble Cantus, and after spending 17 years in that organization (helping it grow from a start-up college ensemble to a full-time professional non-profit), it's a big change in my life.
I'm on day three of being a full-time composer, which is both exciting and frightening! I've got two pieces due next week, one for a HS men's festival in TN and the other for a consortium of 8 women's choirs. A piece for SATB and four-hand piano is due in Sept, and then I've got 8 other commissions to write this season. It's a pretty good mix of high school choirs, college choirs, church choirs and professional ensembles. It's all choral, though! I've got a couple grants out for more work in instrumental chamber music and wind ensemble, and there are a couple things brewing for 14-15.

Happy to be a part of this community,
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 4, 2013 4:55am
Uff da!  Thanks, Tim, for a look into the world of a FULL-time composer.  Good luck with it all!
on August 2, 2013 10:33am
I wish to thank all those people who have sent best wishes for my heart surgery recovery and congratulations! You're a great bunch of creative folks! I in turn wish you all great successes in your creative efforts!
Thanks again for all the kind words! 
Michael Deak
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 2, 2013 10:39am

Allow me to add my congratulations to you on this outstanding honor.  All the best to you on your continued healing and composing.

Frank La Rocca
on August 3, 2013 4:44am
This Summer has been a slow one for composing, since I have been finishing a
book for my physics of music course.  I write from Memphis, where I am attending
the annual conference of the International Horn Society (600 hornists in one spot!),
where I have given talks on the physics of brass instruments and heard a sensational
performance of my Three Hunting Songs for soprano and horn quartet. No time to
visit Graceland before I fly home tomorrow. 
I finished The Mummers, a carol commissioned by a local (San Francisco Bay area)
boy's chorus.  I am finishing Rachel Weeps for chorus, saxophone, and piano, 
which will be performed at Wesleyan University in December for the first anniversary of
the Newtown massacre.  Several choruses will be performing my solstice piece
The Shortest Day, thanks to the Composers Showcase.  A couple will be
performing selections from Now is the Time, my carol sequence for baritone,
chorus, and brass.  I have learned of of five or six other groups that will be performing
other works this season. Gordon Thornett has allowed me to watch over his shoulder
as he finishes Bright was the Star, his choral setting of a Christmas poem i wrote.
Brian Holmes
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 3, 2013 3:07pm
I've been experimenting with jazz and doing some new arrangements. Mostly Beatles and Michael Jackson, but I HAVE just finished an arrangement of Beck's cover of The Korgi's "Everybody's Gotta Learn Sometime" from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (amazing movie, btw).
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 4, 2013 7:53am
As some of you may know the Philippine Madrigal Singers are celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year and between the highlight of the year-long celebration is a concert to be held in October 5th and 6th in Manila where they we will do the premiere of the winning piece of the 2nd IFCM Competition for Choral Composition, “Eight Haikus” by Frank Corcoran. In this concert entitled “Première”, they also thought as Mark Anthony Carpio (the MADZ conductor) wrote to me, “that it would be an excellent idea to feature composers who, in one way or another, have been part of the history of the Madz”. I am one of those honored (and lucky I may say) composers to whom Mark has recently asked to write a new piece to be premiere on this «PREMIERE» Concert. I was working on my piece which I have finished last week and sent to Mark; it is entitled IN MEMORIAM (139 measures, 7 minutes, 2 weeks of intense composing, texts by Rabindranath Tagore); but, In Memoriam of whom? In Memoriam of Andrea O. Veneracion the MADZ alma mater and much venerated founder who has passed away on last July 9th, the very same day which had seen the birth of the first 20 bars of my composition… Natural coincidences no doubt exist but my experience during 14 long and rich years in the seclusion of a contemplative monastery (I was a Cistercian Trappist monk 14 years) has taught me that some coincidences transcend ordinary nature and I feel that in this case I can affirm that this one goes beyond a simple, natural one… In general my experience as a composer has a marked spiritual ingredient but in this case it has been heightened by my willingness to consciously enter a state of inner listening and I may affirm that this very inspired score In Memoriam had been written under the influence (and perhaps presence?...) of Ma’am OA (Andrea Veneracion). I am looking forward to October 4 & 5 Premiere´s Philippine Madrigal Singer concert which it is foreseen to be a very exciting concert with the premieres of wonderful and exiting new works!

From the Argentinean Patagonia
my best regards to all of you!
Eduardo Andrés Malachevsky

ps. if you were on the last National ACDA Conference in Dallas, you may have listened a piece of mine entitled DE PROFUNDIS MAGNIFICAT sung by the Philippine Madrigal Singer (this one:

Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 4, 2013 1:56pm
I'm thrilled to see so many of you thriving and it shows that there is continued support for new music. Congratulations!
This summer has been a busy one for me and I'm excited to share some recent news:
- I have recently completed a commission for Dreams of the Fallen - a 22-minute work for solo piano, chorus, and orchestra setting texts by acclaimed poet and Iraq War veteran Brian Turner. This work will be premiered on Nov. 11 by the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony Chorus of New Orleans at the National WWII Museum in New Orleans. You can learn more about the project here:
- I traveled to Seattle for the national Chorus America conference where my I Will Lift Mine Eyes was performed by Choral Arts (Seattle). This work was also just released on a new album by two-time Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire and is available on iTunes and Amazon. Find out more here.
- The National Lutheran Choir took my Nada Te Turbe on tour which included a performance at the Association for Lutheran Church Musicians national conference in Indiana. At this performance, they also released their latest album including Nada Te Turbe. Find out more here.
- Commission deadlines for this fall include the Master Chorale of Tampa Bay, the MN All-State Women's Choir, Spire Chamber Ensemble, and a few more that aren't quite official but contracts should be signed soon.
Thanks to you all for your continued support and inspiration - it's wonderful to have this network of comrades in such an important line of work.
All best,
Jake Runestad
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 4, 2013 6:00pm
This summer has been marked by a small amount of arranging and a whole lot more editing in preparation for High Holy Days at both synagogues where I conduct. I'm also finishing up a complete Torah service for cantor, SATB & opt. kbd. which I hope will be sung for the 1st time this coming Yom Kippur afternoon.
Alas, nothing came of the commissioning program run here. However, Brian Carder at Hope Church, Holland, MI directed my Holy Woman, Graceful Giver (SSAA, 2 fl, kbd, vc. &/or cb) in services in March—many thanks! Audio coming soon to
Robert A.M. Ross <Robert Ross 11>
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 8, 2013 10:43am
Just delivered a commission for my alma mater (McDaniel College in Westminster, MD), a setting of "Alte Clamat Epicurus" from the Carmina Burana manuscript for SATB choir and organ, to be premiered this fall for a food-themed concert.  Also currently working on another commission for the Maryland State Boychoir, an SATB setting of "Peter's Glimpse" by poet and professor Angela Alamo O'Donnell.
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 14, 2013 10:08am
It's exciting to read what others have been up to.  I'm counting on the summer "break" to do a lot on several commissions!  Having whole days available for writing is a treat.
The music department chair at Shepherd U just asked me to arrange my six-part "Dona Nobis Pacem" motet for his men's chorus, which was not as simple as I'd hoped but fun anyway and came out well.  I recently sent off "Ein Kind Geborn" for SSATBB a cappella to Meistersinger Chorale in California to premiere in December.  The Stuttgart German American Community Chorus was so pleased with my "Memories of Lincoln" in June that they asked me to set the "O Antiphons" for SATB & organ.  So that's my current project (kind of a rush job, but a good problem to have).  I have a "write anything" commission from a middle school, so will be busy looking for texts.  Any suggestions?  I think that's the hard part!  And I have been commissioned to do a larger piece for choir and strings that I am eager to dig into.  
Thanks for asking, best,
Christopher J. Hoh
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 14, 2013 10:52am
Great to see so much composing being done! Here's what I'm up to:
  • Starting a 3-year composer residency with San Francisco's Lieder Alive!, writing works for solo singers to perform on their concert series (this season's performers sing with SF Opera, Seattle Opera, and the Met)
  • Finishing up a song set for countertenor Brian Asawa, with December-March performances in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington state, and Japan
  • Starting a new opera with a San Francisco Bay Area company that shall remain anonymous until I sign the contract (don't want to jinx anything!)
Keep it up composers, and here's to a great 2013-14 season for all of us!
Kurt Erickson
Applauded by an audience of 1
on August 15, 2013 11:31am
My setting of Langston Hughes' "I Dream a World" for SATB is now available for purchase!
on August 15, 2013 11:54am
Congratulations to everyone on their productivity and honors!

I've had a good 2013 so far, having composed the following:

LAUDATE PUERI •  SA BOY’S, TB MEN’S CHOIR, ORGAN AND HANDBELLS, commissioned by the Golden Gate Boys Choir and Bellringers
MISSA PAPAE BENEDICTI XVI •  SATB AND ORGAN, commissioned for the wedding of Alexandra Bailey
EGO SUM PASTOR BONUS •  SATB A CAPPELLA, commissioned by Roderick Blyth for a parish in Oxfordshire

premieres all scheduled for 2013-14 in San Francisco, New York, Glasgow, the Netherlands, Portland OR, and Cholsey, UK

My CD In This Place has sold well with good reviews and radio play.

Commissions upcoming include a major oratorio on the life of a Saint, for chamber orchestra, chorus, organ and soloists by a church in Texas, and a work for choir and orchestra by a local university in California.

Frank La Rocca
on September 12, 2013 7:07pm
Just received some nice news. I was fortunate to be invited earlier this year to work on my piece "If Ever There Is," with Vocalessence as part of their Essentially Choral program for composers. The guest conductor there was Francisco Núñez. Francisco has just informed me that he's planning to do "If Ever There Is," with his Young People's Chorus Of New York .
He also said that he's going to use iit on a program in March at the ACDA Southern Conference with one of the Honor Choirs.  I will be adding this piece to the Composer's Showcase, for now you can view & listen to it at:  The text is a wish for peace by the poet Robert Creeley.
Applauded by an audience of 1
on September 13, 2013 3:06am
Congratulations, Rich - I've just had a look at the piece (and a listen), and like it very much.  Wishing you continued success!
on September 14, 2013 9:00am
Thanks, Gordon!
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