June 17, 2004


The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) honored four choral ensembles for adventurous programming during the 2003-04 concert season, at the Chorus America Annual Conference at the Omni Franklin Hotel in Pittsburgh last week. The Awards, offered annually to constituent members of Chorus America, are presented in appreciation for performances of music written within the past twenty-five years.

In presenting the Awards, ASCAP's Vice President of Concert Music, Frances Richard commented: "2004 marks the twelfth year ASCAP has presented these awards, and the 90th anniversary of the founding of ASCAP. In 1914, our courageous founders, with Victor Herbert in the forefront, fought to protect their rights as creators all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States, where Chief Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote the historic decision affirming their rights. Today ASCAP has over 180,00 members and these awards are presented in their name, to those whose excellent performances of the music of our time enriches and replenishes the great choral repertory. On behalf of the composers whose music you presented this past season, we thank you."

For the second year, the ASCAP/Alice Parker Award was presented. The prize was established in 2003 to honor legendary ASCAP choral composer and conductor, Alice Parker, in celebration of her 75th year. The award is presented annually to the choral ensemble that expands the mission of the chorus by presenting challenging repertory to its audience in new ways.

The ensembles honored with plaques and cash awards were:

Youth/Children's Chorus Category:
San Francisco Girls Chorus
Susan McMane, Artistic Director

Alice Parker Award:
Bella Voce (Chicago, IL)
Anne Heider, Artistic Director

Adult Chorus Awards (two awards):
Opus 7 (Seattle, WA)
Loren Pontén, Artistic Director

South Bend Chamber Singers (Notre Dame, IN)
Nancy Menk, Artist Director/Conductor

Established in 1914, ASCAP is the world's largest performing right organization with over 180,000 composer, lyricist and music publisher members. ASCAP is committed to protecting the rights of its members by licensing and collecting fees for the public performance of their copyrighted works, and distributing royalties to the Society's members. ASCAP's repertory includes the entire spectrum of music - from pop to symphonic, rock to gospel, Latin to country to jazz, rhythm and blues, and music for theater, film and television. ASCAP's Board of Directors is made up solely of writers and publishers, elected by the membership.