Choral Composition Contest

The FVA Choral Composition Contest has been established to encourage efforts in original composition and to give recognition for outstanding achievement.

Congratulations to Lazaro Alonso for being selected as the winner of our 2020 Choral Composition Contest.  Lazaro is a junior at Miami Arts Studio 6–12 at Zelda Glazer, and a student of Ryan and Cindy Ellis.  Since we were not able to hear it performed at the FMEA Convention this year, Lazaro’s composition, “Sanctus”, can be heard in the audio player below. Lazaro recorded the composition by himself with the help of a few friends to sing all the parts.  Well done Lazaro, and congratulations!

Sanctus by Lazaro Alonso
Contest Rules
2019 FVA Composition Contest Winner Sophia Contratto (Niceville HS)

The applicant must be a secondary school music student under the direction of an active member of FVA.

Composition must be an SATB (opt. divisi) choral arrangement of traditional choral style.

All completed submission materials must be sent by email to the Music Committee Chair by September 30 (

Composition Requirements
  • Must be submitted in PDF format, using music notation software
  • Must be legible and marked for complete understanding
    • Printed with one staff for each voice part. If a voice part divides, the two may remain on the same staff.
  • The time duration of the composition must be at least two minutes and long enough to be consistent with good form and taste.
  • The accompaniment must be on two staves below the voice parts.
    • If the composition is a cappella, a piano reduction accompaniment must be provided for rehearsal.
  • Make sure that the text you are using, if not original, is in the public domain and you have the right to set the text to music. Our panel of judges recommends selecting a poem/text that has already been published, as opposed to writing your own text. This is only a suggestion, enabling you to focus more on musical aspects if your text is already solid.
Mikayla Thompson, Winter Park HS, 2017 Winner

Entries shall be evaluated by 3–5 judges.

Compositions will be scored on a scale of 1–5 in the categories as follows:

  • Originality of ideas expressed (1–5 from “Not Original” to “Very Original”)
  • Use of Text (1–5 from “Poor Use of Text” to “Outstanding Use of Text”)
  • Vocal Ranges (1–5 from “Inappropriate” to “Very Appropriate”)
  • Voice Leading (1–5 from “Inappropriate to style” to “Very appropriate to style”)
  • Form (1–5 from “Lacks sufficient structure” to “Exceptional structure”)
  • Melodic/Harmonic interest (1–5 from “Lacking” to “Inspired”)
  • Dr. Amanda Quist, University of Miami
  • Dr. Cara Tasher, University of North Florida
  • Dr. Michael Hanawalt, Florida State University
  • Dr. Andrew Larson, Stetson University
Required Submission Materials

Items to submit by email to David Pletincks, Music Committee Chair, by September 30:

  • A scanned copy of the completed 2020 Entry Form (PDF) with signatures
  • A PDF copy of the music manuscript
  • An MP3 recording of a chorus singing the composition
    • Recording does not need to be a full chorus. It may be any number of singers, as long as all parts are being performed. Performances recorded through apps or software such as Acapella, GarageBand, Audacity, etc. would also be acceptable.

Submit materials to

David Pletincks, Music Committee Chair