Choral Arts New England held its annual Awards Ceremony on Saturday, October 23, 2021 at 4 p.m. in Wellesley, Massachusetts. Due to public health-related space restrictions, attendance at the event is by invitation only. However, the ceremony will be available for streaming live and available for later viewing on YouTube (linked on the Choral Arts YouTube channel).
Choral Arts New England newsletter
New England choruses have been severely tested in the past 18 months, and they have responded with tenacity and ingenuity. This year, Choral Arts New England decided to highlight some of the choruses who have made notable accomplishments during the pandemic by instituting a special Phoenix Award. The award particularly recognized continuing to make music in some way; engaging membership and the community; being creative, visionary and resourceful; contributing to artistic well-being; keeping musicians and/or staff employed; and providing educational opportunities.
In celebration of the return to safe singing, four choirs are joining together to present a special event, "At Last We Sing Again Berkshires" on September 4 from 1:30–2:30 p.m. at the Shakespeare & Co.'s New Spruce Outdoor Theater, 70 Kemble Street in Lenox. Participating groups are the Northern Berkshire Chorale, Berkshire Concert Choir, Stockbridge Festival Chorus, and Cantilena Chamber Choir. Unaffiliated singers are also welcome to join the event!
There is a registration fee of $15, to cover facility rental and liability. In compliance with health regulations, all singers must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination.
The COVID-19 crisis has had an enormous impact on choral organizations, and Choral Arts New England is proud to support our choral communities as they innovate and persevere through these uncertain times. This year, we have created a special recognition, the Phoenix Award, to highlight choruses who have made notable accomplishments in these difficult times. All choral groups whose primary activities fall within the six New England states (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut or Rhode Island) are eligible for nomination.
Consider the following criteria for nominations:
PBS released a short feature in November 2019 about choral music, focusing on composers Eric Whitacre, Frank Ticheli and Morten Lauridsen. Their stories placed against the backdrop of a broad view of choral music offers a bit history lesson and a bit modern perspective. The show may be viewed at https://www.pbs.org/video/american-voices-8ndxz5/
Choral Arts New England has announced the funding of 10 grants, for a total of $13,000, starting in 2021. The funded projects were selected from 46 proposals received. Last year, 51 applications were received and $13,500 was given in grants. The grant recipients, listed alphabetically, are Classical Uprising (Portland, Maine), Coro Allegro (Boston, Mass.), Ensemble Altera (Johnston, R.I.), The Keene Chorale (Keene, N.H.), The Main Street Children's Choir (New Britain, Conn.), Metropolitan Chorale (Brookline, Mass.), Renaissance Men (Westwood, Mass.), Schoodic Arts for All (Winter Harbor, Maine), Solaris Vocal Ensemble (Essex Junction, Vt.), and Worcester Children's Chorus (Worcester, Mass.).
The Providence-based chamber choir Ensemble Altera is sponsoring a composition competition to showcase the work of up-and-coming choral composers. The winning work will be recorded and, if possible, performed for a live audience as part of Altera’s COVID memorial project, “We Remember,” taking place in mid-July. The winnder will also receive a cash prize of $500.
Applications are now available for 2021 Alfred Nash Patterson Grants. To apply for a grant, complete the online form on or before the deadline of Sunday, February 28, 2021. Located elsewhere on this website are full application instructions, information about last year's recipients, and a list of past recipients.
In response to this year's devastating pandemic—which has eliminated live performance of choral music throughout New England—Choral Arts New England instituted a special round of emergency grants to provide some operational relief for choral organizations. Available funding allowed for 20 grants of $500 each; recipients were selected from nearly 60 applicants, with priority given to smaller organizations for whom the grant would have the most impact.
The grant recipients are:
A new YouTube video series, "Talking Choral Music," featuring interviews with noted composers, conductors and business leaders in the choral community, will be launched on Friday, Oct. 16. The host is Cantilena Chamber Choir Music Director Andrea Goodman. See the programs at https://youtu.be/xKQQ3LSWSnE