Choral Arts New England

The deadline for 2015/2016 grant applications has passed.

Choral Arts New England extends the mission of the Alfred Nash Patterson (ANP) Foundation, providing grants that support innovative programming, commissions, and improved management for choral organizations. Alfred Nash Patterson Grants have been awarded continuously since 1985. In 1994, Choral Arts New England initiated a Lifetime Achievement Award to honor significant contributions to choral singing and its culture within New England.

About Choral Arts New England

Choral Arts New England was formed in 1980 as a memorial to Alfred Nash “Bud” Patterson, the founder of Boston's Chorus pro Musica and the Master Singers of Worcester and leader, at various times, of the Cape Cod Chorale, the Worcester County Music Association, the Worcester Festival Chorus, and the Brandeis University Chorus. Bud Patterson loved the choral arts and all those who practiced them. In his teaching at Tanglewood and Brandeis and through his personal example, he inspired a whole generation of singers and choral directors throughout New England. He was a cultural leader, articulating ambitious goals for choral music performance, chorus development, and choral music composition. He was a mentor and model for singers, conductors and composers. Upon his death in 1979, many spontaneous gifts were received in his memory; from those seeds, the present organization has grown.

Today, Choral Arts New England conducts the following activities to support choral singing. Further information can be found by following the indicated links.

  1. Alfred Nash Patterson Foundation grants are given annually for outstanding projects that further the choral arts. The grants support adventurous programming and broaden repertory by encouraging performance of new compositions and long-neglected works, support music education and the training of young choral singers, encourage festivals and other cooperative choral projects, and otherwise enrich the quality of choral singing in all six New England states. Grants are carefully evaluated, including a review of applying choruses by a committee of distinguished artistic advisors. Grant application schedule: Applications are due by the end of February for projects that will begin on or after the following July. Decisions are made and applicants notified by the beginning of May, whether or not the application is granted.
  2. The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented annually by Choral Arts New England to individuals who have made exceptional contributions to choral singing and its culture within New England.
  3. Awards and grants are presented at the annual fall awards ceremony, which is usually held in mid or late October. The ceremony is a wonderful opportunity to meet representatives of various choruses, choral directors, composers, members of the Choral Arts board of directors, and other supporters of our cause.
  4. An online newsletter continually publishes information of interest to New England choral singers, and accepts submissions of items of interest. It is supplemented by a biannual print newsletter, sent to our mailing list.
  5. An online choral calendar that aims to list all major choral events in New England (it can be customized to show only local events). Anyone can submit calendar events.
  6. A directory of choruses of New England, listing all choral societies throughout the region. Anyone can submit a new directory listing for consideration.

Choral Arts New England is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, run by a Board of Directors. We welcome your comments.

Announcing the 2015 Grant Recipients

Choral Arts New England announces the recipients of 2015 Alfred Nash Patterson grants. The recipients were selected from 47 proposals that were received by the February 28 deadline.

  • Cantilena Chamber Choir of Lenox, Mass.
    For a concert in honor of Tanglewood Music center’s 75th anniversary that features works by composers who were Tanglewood composition fellows. Those composers include Lukas Foss, Elliot Carter, Michael Gandolfi, Thomas Oboe Lee, and John Harbison, among others. The performance is on May 15, 2016 in Lenox.
  • Chorus pro Musica of Boston, Mass.
    To support a 25-minute commissioned work for chorus and brass band by composer Andy Vores, called Spencer the Rover, which will be premiered at Sanders Theatre in Cambridge on March 12, 2016.
  • CONCORA (Connecticut Choral Artists) of Hartford, Conn.
    To support an innovative semi-staged performance of J.S. Bach’s St. John Passion that includes innovative placement of singers and instrumentalists, supertitles, and visual aids, under the direction of CONCORA's new music director, Dr. Christopher Shepard. The performance is on March 20, 2016 in Hartford.
  • Coro Allegro of Boston, Mass.
    For a collaborative project with Boston City Singers to expand Howard Frazin's The Voice of Isaac, an oratorio retelling the Abraham and Isaac story from Isaac’s perspective, to include adult voices. The expanded work will be performed at Sanders Theatre in Cambridge on March 13, 2016.
  • Emmanuel Music of Boston, Mass.
    To support the work of Emmanuel Music to "rescue" Johann Sebastian Bach’s final passion, the St. Mark Passion, and perform it at Emmanuel Church on March 19, 2016. The performance will include a pre-concert conversation with scholars about the project. Free tickets will be made available to certain Boston-area students.
  • Journey Song Charitable Trust of Kensington, N.H.
    For a "Celebration of Hospice Music" on November 15, 2015 at the Congregational Church of Exeter, N.H., featuring the compositions and arrangements of singer and composer Peter Amidon, which are meant to bring the comfort of vocal music, both secular and sacred, to those nearing the end of life.
  • Lorelei Ensemble of Cambridge, Mass.
    To support the commissioning of two new works by Tim Takach and Bryan Christian, to be premiered on December 18–19, 2015 at Marsh Chapel, Boston University, as part of Lorelei Ensemble's first Christmas program, called “Of Such Virtue."
  • Master Singers of Worcester of Worcester, Mass.
    To support a concert that celebrates Armenian musical heritage and commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. The performance, on October 25, 2015, at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, will include works by Armenian composers, a commissioned work from Stephan Barnicle, and the Requiem for the Living by the American composer Dan Forrest.
  • Vermont Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association of Burlington, Vermont
    To support the “Gather at the River” conference in Hanover, NH on June 26–27, 2015, which consists of workshops, seminars and performances open to all choral musicians, culminating in a performance by all participants of Maurice Duruflé’s Requiem.
  • Wescustago Youth Chorale of Yarmouth, Maine
    To support hiring a one-year Development Coordinator, who will pursue fundraising opportunities that were identified through a strategic planning process to promote long-term growth and of music and outreach programs.
  • Women in Harmony of Portland, Maine
    For a performance of Diane Benjamin’s Where I Live (A Breast Cancer Oratorio), for women’s chorus, soloists, strings, piano, and percussion, on May 20–21, 2016, at St. Luke's Cathedral in Portland, Maine. The concert will be conducted in partnership with the Cancer Community Center in Scarborough, Maine.

Choral Arts New England also continues support of Blue Heron Renaissance Choir of Auburndale, Mass., for recording the Peterhouse Partbooks (fourth year of a four-year grant).

Grants will be presented at the Awards Ceremony on November 8, 2015. Further information about the ceremony will be given soon.

Choral Arts New England newsletter goes online

Choral Arts New England has published a newsletter since its inception in 1985. Now that journal has added an online edition, available at

The online publication is for news, announcements, and discussion of matters of interest to choruses and choral singers throughout New England. Look there for accounts of special choral events such as performances, workshops, classes, or community activities, and for stories about people and institutions in the New England choral community. We hope to soon add online discussion groups so people can share experiences and ideas.

There is an "announcements" section for posting such items as concert notices (see also our online choral calendar), auditions for new singers or soloists (see also our chorus directory), and other events, such as fundraising activities, special talks or seminars.

The site is still under development, and we look forward to rapidly making improvements in ease of use, but we hope you will take advantage of it right now. We welcome your ideas, announcements, and other contributions; send them to

Commissions supported by Choral Arts New England

A new list has been compiled of commissions supported by Choral Arts New England grants. The list may be found at:

Choral Arts New England • 781-721-SING (781-721-7464)
P.O. BOX 608 • Newton, MA 02456-0608