Boston University School of Theology Hymn Competition 2010

in News
December 7th, 2009

In honor of Carl P. Daw, Jr

To celebrate the work of Carl P. Daw, Jr upon his retirement as Executive Director of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, the School of Theology at Boston University announced a hymn-writing competition. This competition aims to identify a talented author and/or composer and support her or him in the creation of a new hymn to be premiered by the School of Theology’s Seminary Singers in the spring of 2010.

Out of nearly forty submissions the jury unanimously voted that winning entry was the tune ‘Musica mundana’ and the words ‘Planets humming as they wander’ both written by Heather Josselyn-Cranson. Dr. Josselyn-Cranson directs both the music ministry major and the music that is part of worship on campus, at Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa. Previously the minister of education and music at Old West Church in Boston, Josselyn-Cranson has a Doctor of Theology degree in liturgy and liturgical music from Boston University. She is a member of the North American Academy of Liturgy, the Order of Saint Luke, and the Hymn Society of North America. The winning hymn will be given its first performance at Community Worship on Wednesday 21 April 2010 at 11:10AM in Marsh Chapel at Boston University.

Candidate eligibility

The BU STH Hymn Competition is open to all current, and former Boston University faculty, staff and students.

Items to submit

1. A completed application form
2. The new hymn in one of the following forms:
a. Text and tune
b. Text only
c. Tune only

Submission guidelines

  • Musical Scores: PDF files only. Notation files will not be accepted.
  • It is preferred that music scores are typeset using a music software program such as Finale or Sibelius, however, manuscripts will be accepted providing they are legible.
  • Prose Documents: PDF files preferred. Microsoft Word format (DOC) is also accepted.

Deadline and Process for Submissions

Paper Application

Materials must be postmarked on or before March 1, 2010, and sent to:

Holly Reed
745 Commonwealth Avenue, box 113
Boston, MA 02215

Electronic Application

Materials must be submitted on or before March 1, 2010. Applications materials should be sent to reedhg@bu.edu. Late applications will be disqualified.

Competition Prize

The winner will receive a prize of $250.00. Payment will be in US funds only. Prize monies will be subject to applicable tax laws and it is the responsibility of the winner to properly report the prize. The prize will be sent to the winning composer after the premiere.

Parameters of the New Work

The winning composer will create a new hymn for congregational use.

The new work must meet the following criteria:

Essentials

  • piano or organ accompaniment
  • unison or up to four-part harmony

Texts

Texts should be in English. If the intended lyrics are not in the public domain, and the composer is not the author and copyright holder of the lyrics, it is the responsibility of the composer to obtain permission from the copyright holder before the deadline for receipt.

Tune

If the author wishes to use an existing tune that is not in the public domain, and she or he is not the composer and copyright holder of the tune, it is the responsibility of the author to obtain permission from the copyright holder before the deadline for receipt.

Theme

The hymn should broadly embrace the theme of music as a medium of praise.

Judging

The applications will be examined by a Jury chosen by the School of Theology and will include Professors Karen Westerfield Tucker and Andrew Shenton (chair), and Chad William Kidd, ad interim director of the Seminary Singers. Members of the Jury may not enter the competition. The Jury’s decision is final and may not be appealed. The School of Theology, at the advice of the Jury, reserves the right not to award the prize. All judging will be anonymous. Copies of the submitted hymn should not carry any identifying information – instead, this should all be on the application form.

The Boston University School of Theology will publically announce the names of the competition winner and “honorable mentions”, if applicable, by the end of March 2010. The names of non-winners will not be made public and will be held in strict confidence. Authors and composers whose works do not win the prize will be informed no later than March 31, 2010.

Rights

The following rights will be given to the Boston University School of Theology before disbursement of prize monies:

  1. The School of Theology will have exclusive performance rights through July 1, 2010.
  2. The School of Theology reserves the right to perform the work in perpetuity.
  3. The School of Theology will have exclusive recording rights through July 1, 2011.
  4. The School of Theology reserves the right to record the work in perpetuity.
  5. The following dedication must appear just above or below the title of the work in all manuscript and published editions:
    Commissioned by the School of Theology of Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA in honor of Carl P. Daw, Jr.
    Premiered [date tba]
  6. The School of Theology will have the right to make copies for distribution to the choir.
  7. The winning author / composer will be asked to provide biographical information and a photograph for publicity purposes. The School of Theology will have the right to use the composer’s photo, name, and composition title in future School of Theology communications without fees.

The following rights are retained by the winning author / composer:

  1. Copyright ownership
  2. Publication rights
    [The composition may not be published prior to July 1, 2010.]

In the event that a sponsor is found for the Competition, and consequently the name of the prize is changed, the composer agrees to use the new name, as above.

Although every effort will be made to protect and safeguard all manuscripts and recordings, neither the Boston University School of Theology nor anyone connected with this contest will assume responsibility for loss, damage, or disclosure. It is strongly recommended that contestants keep the original copies of their scores and recordings.

Applicants with further questions are encouraged to contact the competition coordinator Holly Reed at reedhg@bu.edu.