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2019 Hendrix College Candlelight Carol Competition

 2019 Hendrix College Candlelight Carol Competition
Summary:Carol competition
Deadline: 01 October 2019
Date Posted: 06 August 2019
Details: For over 50 years, the Hendrix College Choir has been presenting an annual Christmas service of lessons and carols, known as the Candlelight Carol Service. Four performances are held each December in Greene Chapel on the campus of Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. Additionally, the Choir performs regionally in Methodist churches in Arkansas and neighboring states. In total, over 1,500 audience members attend the performances each year. It is a beloved tradition of the Christmas season throughout the region.

The Choir, under the direction of Dr. Andrew Morgan, is pleased to announce guidelines for the 2019 Hendrix College Candlelight Carol Competition. The winning composition will be performed in all Candlelight services. The composer will receive an award of $1,000.00, up to $300.00 in travel reimbursement to attend a performance, and a recording of their work following the conclusion of the services. The competition is open to composers of any age or nationality. Submitted works must be unpublished and have received no prior performances.

For the 2019 competition, composers must submit an original composition that employs William Blake’s A Cradle Song as the text. The complete poem may be found at the end of this document (and here). Composers may use the entire text or excerpt from it as they see fit. Compositions may be written for either SATB or SSA/SSAA choir. Additionally, works may be a cappella or feature organ accompaniment. Piano accompaniment or other obbligato instrumental parts may not be used. Submitted works must be 5 minutes or less in duration, and appropriate for a collegiate choir performing a Christmas season service.

Compositions are to be submitted electronically as .PDF files in their final version (MIDI files are optional, and may be considered by the judges at their discretion) by September 1, 2019. Submissions will be screened for completeness and compatibility with the Candlelight Service and the contest guidelines. A committee, including Dr. Andrew Morgan, a Hendrix College music student, and additional choral conducting professionals will review finalists and select a winner, who will be notified by October 1, 2019.

Contest Guidelines (continued on p. 2)
• Only one piece per composer may be submitted.
• Submitted works must be unpublished and unperformed. The Hendrix Choir will give the world premiere of the winning composition.
• Works must be complete and in their final version at the time of submission.
• The composer must omit their name from the composition document and file name (title page as well as subsequent pages) in order to ensure anonymity in the evaluation process. Failure to do so will result in immediate disqualification.
• Compositions must be written for SATB choir or SSA/SSAA choir. Additional divisi parts are acceptable within reason (there are approximately 35-40 members of the Hendrix Choir). Works may be a cappella or may feature organ accompaniment.
• Maximum duration of 5 minutes.
• If the winning composer chooses to pursue publication of the work, he or she must acknowledge the Hendrix College Choir and the Candlelight Carol Competition in the published version.

Submission Guidelines

Composers must submit the following materials as attachments to a single email message by September 1, 2019, sent to

• Complete score, submitted as a single .PDF document. Paper submissions will not be accepted.
• The composer’s name must not be included on any pages of the composition or in the file name(s).
• The composer’s name must be included only in the text of the email itself, along with email and phone contact information.
• MIDI files of the work (optional, and given the same file name as the score .PDF); judges may use the MIDI files at their discretion in evaluating the works.
• One page of program notes (optional). N.B.: the printed program of the Candlelight Carol Service cannot accommodate a large body of program notes. Therefore, the composer must accept that their remarks will be excerpted and edited by Dr. Morgan for use in the service program.

Send any questions to Dr. Andrew Morgan (

A Cradle Song (from Songs of Innocence) - William Blake
Sweet dreams form a shade,
O'er my lovely infants head.
Sweet dreams of pleasant streams,
By happy silent moony beams

Sweet sleep with soft down.
Weave thy brows an infant crown.
Sweet sleep Angel mild,
Hover o'er my happy child.

Sweet smiles in the night,
Hover over my delight.
Sweet smiles Mothers smiles,
All the livelong night beguiles.

Sweet moans, dovelike sighs,
Chase not slumber from thy eyes,
Sweet moans, sweeter smiles,
All the dovelike moans beguiles.

Sleep sleep happy child,
All creation slept and smil'd.
Sleep sleep, happy sleep.
While o'er thee thy mother weep

Sweet babe in thy face,
Holy image I can trace.
Sweet babe once like thee.
Thy maker lay and wept for me

Wept for me for thee for all,
When he was an infant small.
Thou his image ever see.
Heavenly face that smiles on thee,

Smiles on thee on me on all,
Who became an infant small,
Infant smiles are His own smiles,
Heaven & earth to peace beguiles.