2017 Contest Guidelines

Download 2017 Welcome Christmas Guidelines and Application

2017 Contest Guidelines

  • World premiere: No prior performance of submitted work.
  • Original carol: No arrangements or new settings of existing tunes.
  • Eligibility: Composers of all ages whose permanent residence is North America.
  • Form: Carol (defined as a strophic song, which may or may not have refrains, that is associated with Christmas).
  • Voicing: SATB A Cappella Choir (no additional accompanying instruments allowed).
  • Duration: 3-4 minutes. Compositions longer than 4 minutes in length will not be reviewed.
  • Text: Sacred or secular, medieval to present, appropriate for concert setting; Christmas or seasonal winter themes accepted. Proof of public domain or author’s written permission for use of text is required.

Who may apply

  • Composers of all ages; experience writing for voice and/or choirs is beneficial.
  • Applicants do not need to be members of ACF to apply. However, if selected, the composer is expected to be a member for a one-year period. (For membership information visit composersforum.org/get-involved/join-renew or call 651/251-2810).

Submission Requirements

  • Signed and completed application form
  • One full score including duration
  • A biography not to exceed one page
  • Program notes not to exceed one page (optional)
  • Document giving permission or status for use of text
  • Optional: If you would like your materials returned, please enclose a check (payable to American Composers Forum) in the amount of $5.00 to cover return postage. Please do not include stamps or SASEs.


Postmarked on or before Friday, June 16, 2017.  Faxes will not be accepted.

Selection Process

Applications and scores will be screened for completeness by ACF staff. Final selection and programming decisions will be made by VocalEssence Artistic Director Philip Brunelle. Note: American Composers Forum and VocalEssence reserve the right not to make an award.


Composers will be notified by late July, 2017.

For more information about this program, contact Wiliam Lackey at wlackey@composersforum.org.