European Award for Choral Composers
The European Award for Choral Composers is the continuation of the “Golden Tuning Fork” Award, organised by AGEC over many years, and was first organised by the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat in 2011/2012.
The aim of the award is to discover unknown or less known choral works from different European countries, already published and/or performed or written for the occasion, that are good and interesting and can be performed by a good average choir, not just by a top-level choir.
Choral compositions can only be nominated by a national or regional federation, member of ECA-EC that can submit up to 3 works in each category, composed by one or different composers within the past five years.
Organisers: European Choral Association – Europa Cantat and Republic of Slovenia Public Fund for Cultural Activities JSKD
25 compositions by composers from all over Europe have been entered in the competition. An internationally renowned jury, comprised of Josep Vila i Casañas (ES), Karin Rehnqvist (SE), Tadeja Vulc (SI), Ēriks Ešenvalds (LV), and Seán Doherty (IE) selected the following winning pieces and also awarded special mentions.
Winner of category A.
“Amor, io fallo”, for mixed choir, composed by Jan Van der Roost in 2018. It is published with Euprint ed and was submitted to the award by Koor&Stem.
Jan Van der Roost received his musical education at Lemmens Institute, Leuven (now LUCA School of Arts), and the Royal Conservatoire of Ghent. At the Royal Flemish Music Conservatoire of Antwerp, he obtained first prizes for choral conducting and composition. Until 2016, he taught counterpoint, fugue, orchestration and composition at Lemmens Institute.
Jan van der Roost is a sought-after adjudicator, guest lecturer and conductor, his educational and musical activities have taken him to over 50 countries on four continents. His over 150 compositions have been recorded by major labels world-wide and are regularly performed by some of the world’s leading ensembles and orchestras, including St. Petersburg State Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic, the King’s Singers, the Polish Radio Choir and most Belgian professional ensembles.
Special mention in category A.
“Sanctus Amor”, for equal voices choir SSAA, composed by Hans Helsen in 2019. It is published with Euprint ed and was submitted to the award by the Flemish Federation of Young Choirs (VFJK).
Winner of category B.
“Autumn Soils”, for mixed choir, composed by Maarten Van Ingelgem in 2019. It is published with Euprint ed and was submitted to the award by the Flemish Federation of Young Choirs (VFJK).
While studying piano and composition at the conservatories of Brussels and Antwerp, Maarten Van Ingelgem (b. 1976) caught the choir bug. In 2001, he started conducting the Ghent-based chamber choir for contemporary music De 2de Adem. So far, he has performed 40 premieres with them. Furthermore, he was one of the bass singers in Aquarius and is regularly invited to conduct or reinforce the bass section of ensembles such as the Brussels Chamber Choir and the Flemish Radio Choir. He shares his passion for creativity in his role as Professor of Composition at LUCA School of Arts, Leuven.
His oeuvre as a composer ranges from solo pieces to string quartets and from chamber opera to piano concerto, and has been awarded several prizes. Amongst others, Maarten has already been laureate of the European Award for Choral Composers twice. He was the composer of the compulsory pieces for the European Music Festival for Young People Neerpelt and the International Choir Contest of Flanders and is artistic director of the 2021 World Choir Games in Flanders.
Special mention in category B.
“How sweet the Moonlight”, for equal voices choir SSA, composed by Vigdis Hansa Elst in 2018. It is published with Euprint ed and was submitted to the award by the Flemish Federation of Young Choirs (VFJK).
Each awarded work will be performed in the frame of the EUROPA CANTAT Festival in Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2021. The composers of the winning works will be invited to the festival. ECA-EC will use their best endeavours to promote the publication and the spreading of the awarded scores.
Winners of the 2017/18 Edition
On September 20th 2017 the Jury of the European Award for Choral Composers, comprised of Jonathan Rathbone (UK, chair), Ivo Antonigni (CH), Ágnes Erdélyi (HU), Cecilia Martin-Löf (SE), Raul Talmar (EE) with the advice of Jan Schumacher (DE), chair of the Music Commission of the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat, chose the winning compositions of the 2017/8 edition.
For the 3rd edition 2017/18 member organisations of ECA-EC were again invited to submit compositions for the following categories: 1. a cappella choir, 2. choir and instruments, with a maximum of 3 works per category to be submitted by one organisation.
51 compositions from 41 composers were submitted to the competition by 17 member organisations in 16 European countries, a clear increase in comparison with the previous edition. 38 compositions were submitted in category 1, 13 in category 2.
In category 1 (a cappella) the jury decided to share the prize among two winning composition:
- “Cantate Domino” (2012) for male choir, composed by Balatoni Sándor (HU *1983)
- “Mesedoboz” (2015) for female choir, composed by Peter Tóth (HU * 1965)
In category 2 (with instruments) the Jury chose one winning composition:
- “Jubilate Deo” (2012) for female choir, 2 violins and small percussion instruments, composed by Gyöngyösi Levente (HU * 1975)
All three compositions were submitted by the Hungarian Association for Choirs and Orchestras (KÓTA), the jury received anonymous scores and was not aware of the nationalities of the scores with Latin text.
The winning composition were awarded 300 EUR each and will be performed at the festival EUROPA CANTAT XX in Tallinn, Estonia, between July 27th and August 5th 2018 by one of the guest as part of a special evening concert.
The next edition of the European Award for Choral Composers will be organised in 2020, with the winning compositions being performed in the Festival EUROPA CANTAT XXI in 2021.
Read the full conditions of the competition
On September 18th 2014 the Jury of the European Award for Choral Composers chose the winning compositions of the 2014/5 edition. 39 compositions from 31 composers were submitted to the competition by 11 member organisations in 9 European countries, with 26 compositions in category A (a cappella), 11 in category B (with instruments) and 2 in category C (vocal jazz).
In category A the jury chose one winning composition, the “Missa Brevis” (2013) for mixed choir, composed by Hans Helsen (BE * 1989), submitted by the Flemish association Koor&Stem
In category B the Jury chose no winner but decided on two “special mentions”
1. “Fairy Ring” (2012) for female choir and harp, composed by Maarten Van Ingelgem (BE *1976), submitted by the Flemish association Koor&Stem
2. “Diptychon” (2011) for female choir and violin, composed by Henrik Colding-Jorgensen (DK * 1944), submitted by the Danish association for Amateur Music DAM
On April 16th 2012 the winning compositions of the European Award for Choral Composers was selected.
38 compositions from 11 countries were submitted to the competition, the jury selects 3 winners from choral compositions submitted from all over Europe, two special mentions were also awarded.
Winner of Category A:
- “Bestiaire fantasque“ (2011) for children’s choirs, composed by Pierre Chépélov (FR *1979), Text Claude RoyPublished by Les Editions Musicales Archipel , you can now listen to the work and read the score.Contact the composer: email@example.com
“Bestiare fantasque” was performed in the frame of the festival EUROPA CANTAT XVIII by the female voices of the choir Meridies (Argentina), on July 31st 2012 at the Conservatory.
Winners of Category B:
- “Gloria Kajoniensis” (2008 – Kontrapunktmusic) for female choirs,composed by Levente Gyöngyösi (HU *1975)
Contact the composer: firstname.lastname@example.org
“Gloria Kajonensis” was performed performed in the frame of the festival EUROPA CANTAT XVIII by the Hungarian choir Magnificat on August 4th S. Domenico Church.
- “1914” (2009) for male choirs, composed by Maarten Van Ingelgem (BE *1976)
Not published, publication currently not planned, work not recorded, yet.
Contact the composer: email@example.com
1914 was performed in the frame of the festival EUROPA CANTAT XVIII by the Estonian National Male Choir in Auditorium Giovanni Agnelli on August 2nd 2012.
Special Mentions in Category A:
- “Kuule mu palve häält“ (Hear My Prayer – 2011) for male choirs, composed by Pärt Uusberg (EE *1986)
Not published, publication currently not planned.
Contact the composer: Partuusberg@hotmail.com
- “The Train” (2011/12) for mixed choirs, composed by Uršula Jašovec (SI *1986)
Not published, publication currently not planned.
The work was originally published for female choirs, arranged a little differently
Contact the composer: firstname.lastname@example.org