Month: October 2014

Joshua Hummel of North Carolina wins the 2014 composers contest

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The Lutheran Youth Choir International is proud to announce Joshua Hummel as the winner of the 2014 Composers Contest with his work Grace and Providence. Mr. Hummel’s work will be performed during the upcoming tour of Germany.

Joshua Hummel, composer and pianist, is the recipient of various composition awards including the prestigious Frederick Fennell Prize and the Leonard Bernstein Award. His music has been performed in Carnegie Hall and throughout the US, as well as Paris, Croatia, Perugia, Rome, London and Moscow. Hummel holds an M.A. in Theatre and MMus. in Composition and has studied with professors from the Hartt School of Music, San Francisco Conservatory and Julliard.

Hummel has received several awards for his choral music. Later, a setting of the Wassily Kandinsky poem won the 2010 Cantate Chamber Singers Young Composers Competition. His choral work, Novum Decus Oritur, won First Prize in a Cambridge, MA, choral competition; and though poppies grow, won Second Prize in a London-based choral competition sponsored by Recital Music, and his setting of the Kyrie won the 2012 ActorCor Choral Composition Competition. And in 2014, he recently won the Loyola University Maryland Prize for Composition with his setting of God of Our Fathers.

His wind ensemble music has been performed throughout the country by some of the nation’s top college bands including The University of California at Long Beach, The University of Texas at Austin and the Yale Concert Band. In February 2011 the Yale Concert Band premiered his Fennell award-winning composition, Haiku Symphony No. 4, in Woolsey Hall and Carnegie Hall. And in 2012 he won First Prize in the Austin Civic Orchestra 2012 Composition Competition with his orchestra piece, Haiku Symphony No. 2.

Hummel composes for Colors in Motion, an arts collective in Cambridge, MA, and owns Sinensis Music, a composition studio in Hartford, CT.

Thoughts from the composer on Grace and Providence

I adore the poetry of William Cowper and came across
this poem while searching for a Thanksgiving text to set.
I composed this for my church choir which posed the ever-interesting
challenge to balance accessibility and originality, simplicity and craft.
The final product struck a fair balance for my group of amateur singers,
and I hope the Lutheran Youth Choir will find it enjoyable and rewarding.
And I hope the truths of this text will resonate in your heart as it has mine;
and may this setting enhance and propel a sense of deep gratitude to God
for the immeasurable gifts of providence He has given us!
The final stanza amplifies my feelings on this piece:
Forgive the song that falls so low
Beneath the gratitude I owe!
It means Thy praise, however poor,
An angel’s song can do no more.