Sponsored Jointly by Ithaca College and Mark Foster Publishing (a division of Hal Leonard)

Former Director of Choral Activities Lawrence Doebler founded the Choral Composition Festival in 1979 to encourage the creation and performance of new choral music and to establish the Ithaca College Choral Series. Six scores were chosen for performance this evening from entries submitted from around the world. 

Ithaca College hosts a yearly choral music composition contest. On the day of the festival the top six entries are performed by selected high school choirs. The festival starts in the morning with the introduction of the groups, and continues throughout the day with rehearsals and workshops presented by all choral groups at Ithaca College. Each choir works with the composer of the piece to be performed in the evening concert. In the afternoon, all the groups meet in Ford Hall and rehearse the massed choir piece with Dr. Galván, Director of Choral Activities. The Ithaca College Choir performs its annual commissioned work after having presented a workshop with the piece and the composer during the afternoon rehearsal and workshop. There is a concert in the evening at 7:00 p.m. in Ford Hall in which all the works are performed, and the winner of the Robert Campbell ’40, M.S. ’50 Endowed Choral Composition Prize is announced.

View Submission Guidelines.

Finalists in the 2019-20 contest

Timothy Cooper: Laetatus Sum

Joshua Fishbein: B'tseit Yisraeil Mimitsrayim

Brian Field: Let the Light Shine On Me

Julian Gomez Giraldo: Jesus Dulcis

Bernard Hughes: The Singers

Joannie Ing: When You Are Old

Thank you to all who entered compositions.

Previously Commissioned Works

1979: Vincent Persichetti, Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

1980: Samuel Adler, Two Shelley Songs

1981: Karel Husa, Every Day

1982: William Schuman, Esses

1983: Dan Locklair, Break Away

1984: Eugene Butler, Eternity and Time

1985: Iain Hamilton, The Convergence

1986: Ellen Taafe Zwilic, Thanksgiving Song

1987: Richard Wernick, The Eleventh Commandment

1988: Peter Schickele, Songs I Taught My Mother

1989: Thomas Pasatieri, Three Mysteries for Chorus

1990: Norman Dello Joio, The Quest

1991: Augusta R. Thomas, Sanctus

1992: Norman Dello Joio, Songs of Memory*

1993: Ronald Caltabian, Metaphor

1994: Thea Musgrave, On The Underground

1995, Daniel Pinkham: Passion Music

1996: Daniel Asia, purer than purest pure

1997: Chen Yi, Spring Dreams

1998: Robert Maggio, Aristotle

1999: Lowell Lieberman, Three Elizabethan Songs

2000: George Tsontakis, Ithaka

2001: Chen Yi, Xuan

2002: Anthony Iannaccone, The Soul’s Expression

2003: Daniel Dorff, The Colors of Creation

2004: Dan Welcher, Leaves of Grass

2005: Ron Nelson, Let us find a meadow

2006: Dana Wilson, Love’s Phases

2007: Gary Schocker, Confederate Soldier’s Prayer

2008: Behzad Ranjbaran, We are one

2009: Steven Stucky, Gravity’s Dream

2010: René Clausen, At Dusk

2011: Carol Barnett, Bega

2012: Paul Carey, …to balance myself upon a broken world

2013: Dominick DiOrio, The Journey To Ithaca

2014: Tawnie Olson, Spring and Fall

2015: Dale Trumbore, All We Need

2016: Francisco Núñez, The Voice You Hear

2017: Timothy C. Takach, Annabel

* Centennial Commission