A classic poem takes a new (musical) flight

A dear friend of mine, who shall remain in anonymity, once showed me e.e. cummings’ i carry your heart with me (i carry it in my heart). As clichéd as it sounds, I loved it. In the course of this past semester, I enrolled in a composition class. In this class put my big boy pants, and I set this poem to music. It was an uphill battle (choosing the singers, rehearsal time) in short, a battle. I won the battle and the war! Here is the finished product, while not perfect, it is pretty darn close. I hope this a start of a new, complementary chapter in my life.

If you want to commission me for a choral piece, do not hesitate in doing so! Without further ado, i carry your heart with me (i carry it my heart).


i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)


Alison Huntley
Lydia Lewis
Mariah Chapdelaine
Elizabeth Peregrine


Carolee Stark
Abiagil Landau
Jessica Moore
Jazmine Hamilton


Tyler Hast
Thomas Heise
Arturo Martinez
Eric Mohlis


Johnnie Campbell
Ethan Q. Ivey
Jordan DePatis
Jack Dessent

José Clavell, conductor

To enter or not to enter?

Ok. So here’s the thing. There’s a competition for the American Choral Conductors Asociation called “Raymond W. Brock Memorial Student Composition Contest” here are the guidelines for said competition.

The Raymond W. Brock Memorial Commission

The Raymond W. Brock Memorial Choral Series was established in 1991 to honor the life and contributions of Raymond W. Brock, who served as Administrative Assistant for ACDA from 1987 until his untimely death in 1991.Brock

Annually, the ACDA Executive Committee will commission a recognized composer to write a choral composition in an effort to perpetuate quality choral repertoire. Funds for this commission will be paid from the Raymond W. Brock Memorial Endowment, a fund established and maintained by the membership of ACDA.

Guidelines for commissioned compositions:

1. Compositions that have a sacred text are preferred, however it is not required that the text come from the Bible.
2. Compositions that use voices are preferred.
3. The music must be substantial and accessible.
4. The music must be of a kind and quality that will live and last for a long period of time.
5. All commissioned compositions will be performed publicly for the first time at a National or Division Conference of the American Choral Directors Association.

Raymond W. Brock Student Composition Competition

In an effort to find another means for furthering its mission to promote choral music and ensure its future, ACDA established the Raymond W. Brock Memorial Student Composition Contest in 1998.  The objectives of the contest are three-fold:

1. To acknowledge and reward outstanding undergraduate and graduate student composers,
2. To encourage choral composition of the highest caliber, and
3. To further promote student activity at ACDA division and national conventions.

The winner of the composition contest will be awarded a $1,000 cash prize, airfare to the ACDA convention, hotel accommodations, convention registration, and a performance of the work on the main stage by a choral ensemble selected by the Convention Committee.

Applications are typically made available in March of each year in Choral Journal and on ACDA’s website.

So. After reading all of this I don’t know if I should enter the competition or not. I feel as if I’m not a good composer or that my music isn’t good enough for that level. What advice would you give me? Should I?