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Harmonium Invites Students to Enter Its Annual High School Choral Composition Contest

2012 Harmonium Composition Contest:  Jacob Gelber, Grand Prize Winner

Harmonium Choral Society invites high school students to participate in its 16th Annual New Jersey High School Student Choral Composition Contest. The contest is open to all students enrolled in grades nine through twelve in any public or private school in the State of New Jersey. It is also open to all students who are legal residents of New Jersey participating in home schooling at the high school level.

Student composers are encouraged to submit their original choral compositions to Harmonium no later than March 4, 2013. Compositions must be five minutes or less in length and based on selected texts by William Shakespeare, Percy Bysshe Shelley, W.B. Yeats, Emily Dickinson or Alfred Lord Tennyson. To view the list of texts, guidelines and additional contest materials, visit or contact contest coordinator Matt Swiss at

The winning compositions will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of professional musicians, composers and music educators. The Grand Prize winner will receive a cash prize of $1,000 and $250 will be awarded to a Runner-Up. In addition, the sponsoring teachers of the winning student composers will receive a monetary award. The winners will be notified by late March or early April.

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The winning compositions will be performed and recorded live during the Harmonium June concerts "Winds of Change.” The concert presents choral works about singing and soul, peace and harmony, wind and wisdom, and includes works by J.S. Bach, Heinrich Schütz, Claudio Monteverdi, Elizabeth Alexander, Abbie Betinis and Stephen Hatfield. “Winds of Change” takes place on Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, June 2, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. at Grace Episcopal Church in Madison.

A CD recording of “From the Mountains to the Sea” has just been released featuring the 15th Anniversary High School Student Composition Contest Winners, as well as a choral suite of past composition contest winners. To purchase a copy, send an email request to Linda Kastner at or call 973-538-6969.

Harmonium needs sponsors to support the high school choral composition contest. Please see or send contributions by mail to Harmonium Choral Society, P.O. Box 1317, Morristown, NJ 07962-1317. Or call 973-538-6969 for more information.



This year Harmonium Choral Society celebrates the 25th Year Anniversary of its Artistic Director, Dr. Anne J. Matlack. Throughout the years, Dr. Matlack’s passion for musical excellence and innovative programming has led Harmonium to become one of the finest choral arts organizations in New Jersey. Harmonium is known for its eclectic programming and community spirit. The 100-voice chorus sponsors commissions, premieres, and musicianship workshops, as well as an Outreach Chorus which performs in schools, nursing homes and other venues. Harmonium has won the prestigious Chorus America Education and Outreach Award as well as the Arts Council of the Morris Area's Outstanding Arts Organization Award. They have performed at Carnegie Hall, the Eastern Division Convention of the American Choral Directors Association and at the opening convocation of the American Guild of Organists (AGO) 2011 Region II Convention.


Funding has been made possible in part by funds from the Arts Council of the Morris Area through the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, and by a grant from The Frank and Lydia Bergen

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