Phoenix Boys Choir – New Works Rising Choral Composition Competition

The Phoenix Boys Choir presents “New Works Rising,” a choral composition competition in celebration of our 75th anniversary season.

We are seeking innovative and accessible choral repertoire for boys and young men that combines originality, imagination, and creativity within the context of contemporary global themes.


1st Place Award:  $1,500
2nd Place Award:  $1,000
3rd Place Award:  $500

General Guidelines

This competition is open to US and international residents of all ages.


Available cash awards:

1st Place – $1,500

2nd Place – $1,000

3rd Place – $500

All awards are in US dollars.


Entries should relate to the occasion of the Phoenix Boys Choir’s 75th anniversary season, themed “Your Passport to the World,” being celebrated during 2022-2023.

Voicing and Length

Entries shall be scored for boys’ choir with mixed voices (SSA, SA, SATB, and variations thereof are acceptable), and may be either accompanied or a cappella. Works should be suitable for performance by 15-40 voices (with or without divisi). Compositions must not exceed 15 minutes in duration. Any style or genre of music is permitted, i.e., works need not be considered classical. Jazz, pop, rock, world, crossover works, gospel, spirituals, etc. are all welcome and encouraged.

The composition may feature instrumental forces, with the understanding that the primary focus of the work should be the voices. The total number of added instruments should be no more than five. Any instrumentation should enrich the texture of the music and not merely double the voices.

The composition should be of medium to complex difficulty. The inclusion of optional choreography and eurythmic elements is acceptable.

Original Composition & Text

Entries must be original musical compositions, not arrangements of pre-existing works.

The text of the composition may be either original or from sacred or secular sources in any world language. A translation of non-English texts must be submitted. Texts may also be based on onomatopoeic syllables or on newly-created words and sounds that do not necessarily convey a meaning.  The use of public domain or original texts is encouraged.

Texts first published in the United States during 1927 or later are usually copyrighted, except for certain exceptions like U.S. Government works. Compositions using copyrighted texts must be accompanied by all applicable permissions and authorizations. (Any costs related to securing copyright permissions are solely the responsibility of  the composer).

New Work

The Phoenix Boys Choir claims the right of first performance of all winning entries. Therefore compositions must be new works, never before adjudicated or recorded or performed in any form in public, outside of a studio or classroom in an academic forum or workshop setting, with no public premier intended.

Only one work per composer will be accepted.


Winning compositions will be selected by a panel of guest judges and the Phoenix Boys Choir Artistic Director. Their evaluation will consider the quality of the piece and its suitability for a successful performance by the Phoenix Boys Choir.

Winning composers will be notified by email and winning selections announced on our social media platforms on September 1, 2022. The decision of the judges is final.

The Phoenix Boys Choir will produce physical copies of selected entries for adjudication purposes, potentially including a reading of finalists by the ensemble. For all entries not awarded, these copies will be collected and destroyed once the competition has concluded unless other arrangements are made with the composer.

Submission Materials

Materials for Submission

The following materials must be included with each submission:

  • Score. All scores must be clearly readable and ready for duplication and performance, preferably in PDF format.

    Scores must be clearly identified as to title and source of text, but the composer’s name must NOT appear on the score, as the judging will be conducted anonymously.

  • Text. A standalone version of the underlying text(s) must be provided, unless the text appears in the score. An English translation of any foreign-language text must be included.

    If text or other quoted materials are not in the public domain, a PDF of proof of the composer’s right to use and/or distribute the text for the submitted work must be provided. Any other relevant information regarding the Phoenix Boys Choir’s ability to license the text for a first commercial performance or recording of the work (for example, information about a lyricist with whom you collaborate) must also be included.

  • Audio. An audio realization of the composition must be submitted in MP3 format.

File Naming and Submission

Digital File Naming. All submitted files should be named using the following format:

[First 3 letters of composer’s last name] – [Title of work] – [submitted item]

For example, the PDF of a score entitled “There Was Time” by John Smith would be named: SMI – There Was Time – Score.pdf. An MP3 of the same work would be named SMI – There Was Time – Audio.mp3.

Digital Portfolio. All materials being submitted should be compiled into a single digital folder or ZIP file. Composers must either (1) provide a link to the digital portfolio location [i.e., Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, etc.] where requested on the submission form below, or (2) provide the portfolio link or attach a ZIP file of all materials in a submission email to [email protected]. Submissions received after the deadline of August 1, 2022 at 11:59pm (MDT) will not be considered.

The Phoenix Boys Choir will ensure that digital files are not shared, forwarded, or distributed beyond our membership.