Washington Master Chorale – Florence Price Commission Competition

Washington Master Chorale’s Florence Price Commission Competition offers a $5,000 song commission to promote and celebrate Black Americans’ contributions to the field of choral music. It was initiated by a generous gift from long-time singer, patron, and former Board Chair, Diane Kresh. The competition is named after the first African-American woman to be nationally recognized as a symphonic composer and, in this inaugural year, especially encourages applications from Black trans women, Black cis women, and Black non-binary composers who are American citizens. The commissioned work is to be a 5-10 minute, original composition for SATB chorus, written in the classical concert music tradition. It may be a cappella or with up to two instruments. Text must be secular and pre-existing, by prominent Black American writers or poets. The work will be premiered in the Washington Master Chorale’s 2023-2024 season. Applicants should submit 1-3 original works or excerpts totaling no more than 10 minutes, for consideration by a panel of judges, including Artistic Director Thomas Colohan and esteemed Black musicians. Resumes, scores, and audio samples should be sent to [email protected] by June 29, 2022.

WASHINGTON MASTER CHORALE (WMC) is a vibrant, mixed-voice chorus of 60 professional and volunteer singers, which has quickly garnered a reputation for vocal excellence and distinctive programming. Since its 2010 debut, led by Artistic Director Thomas Colohan, WMC has sung at The Kennedy Center, the Chorus America National Conference, Library of Congress, and with the National Symphony Orchestra, among other distinguished artists and venues. The Washington Post hails the ensemble’s singing as “remarkable for its beauty,” “seamlessly blended,” and “a sound worth hearing.” Equally at home singing works of American and European masters, WMC is noted for its innovative presentation of music from the 19th-century onward, with emphasis on contemporary works. Composer Morten Lauridsen says, “Maestro Colohan and his splendid singers are committed to choral excellence and will enrich the lives of all who experience their artistry.” The iconic Alice Parker says, “It was a pleasure to hear [this] excellent chorus. I was really impressed.” In 2013, WMC released The Earth and I: New American Choral Music on the Albany label, and in 2016, This Endris Night: Christmas with the Washington Master Chorale on the ACIS label. WashingtonMasterChorale.org