After a hiatus of a few years, Hawaii Public Radio’s Art Song Contest was tried again, BUT: Sorry, to say, not enough entries were recieved. The singers who sent in CDs will have their songs performed on Singing and other Sins, and I’ll announce that program here and contact the singers as well. This is a big disappointment.
The mission of the Art Song Contest is to acknowledge high levels of art song performance. There is no art song without the pianist; that means that although the contest features the vocalists, without a team performance, the entries will not be considered.
Let’s assume that you know what an art song is*. You record your singing (original language of the poem, please), and send it to us here (on a CD) at: ASC, Hawaii Public Radio, 728 Kaheka St., Honolulu, HI 96814. There is no deadline. When the judging panel has chosen 15 semi-finalists, a special Semi-Finalists Program will occur onSinging and other Sins. Those singers will be contacted and asked for bios. From that group 3 or 4 winners will be chosen and requested to supply between 15 – 20 minutes of recorded singing to be aired on the Winners Programof Singing and other Sins. Winners will be asked at that time for further bio information.
Entry data should include the name of the composer, poet, singer and pianist as well as contact info. (email etc.). No age or any other information is necessary. Just write/print this neatly on the CD. You will only be contacted if you are a semi-finalist or winner. Please do not contact the station.
A few hints: your recording must be of broadcast quality; no barking dogs or other background noise. No added re-verb. This is an art song (just one, please) and so should have a good balance between the piano and voice. No out-of-tune pianos. Waiver: By submitting a CD you understand that your entry recording may be used by HPR, broadcast or reproduced without further consent or remuneration.
FAQ: What is the deadline? There is no deadline. This will be an ongoing contest; once a good number of CDs have been received we’ll process them, find the semi-finalists etc., broadcast the Semi-Finalists program and then select the winners and run the Winners program. At the same time other CDs will be arriving for the next semi-finalist and winners rounds.
FAQ: Where is the application form? There is no form. Just write the information requested on the CD. That way it won’t get separated from the all-important recording.
FAQ: What are the age limits? There are NONE.
FAQ: Do you need to be a US citizen? No, it is open to everyone.
FAQ: May we use an electric piano? Yes, if it sounds good: close to the sound of an acoustic piano.
FAQ: Will the semi-finalist and winners programs be streamed? Yes, all Hawaii Public Radio programs are streamed.
FAQ: Can we record ourselves professionally? Yes, just don’t let the sound engineer add obvious ambience or other effects. The recording should have normal recital hall acoustic.
Here are some of the changes from years past (in no particular order):
1. We will not be recording the singers.
2. There will be no prizes other than the honor of being selected and having your recording or recordings broadcast.
3. No entry fee.
4. No live Winners Recital.
5. No deadlines.
6. Any singer/pianist team may enter. No Hawaii residency is necessary. Former contestants/winners may enter again.
Singers will be evaluated on:
1. Technique: basic sound, breath management, intonation, etc.
2. Diction: language ability/accuracy, clear understanding of the meaning of the words
3. Musicianship: rhythm, style, interpretation
4. Presentation: communication and appropriate presentation of character
5. How the “team” of piano and voice work together to make a successful overall interpretation of the song.
*Art Song is poetry set to music by a classical composer for unamplified voice and piano. Opera and oratorio arias, popular, folk, rap, commercial songs, and musical theatre are not included in the definition. Transpositions are acceptable, but selections must be performed in the original language.
Any one selection of Lieder (such as Schubert, Schumann, etc.), mélodie (Fauré, Debussy, etc.), or art songs in other languages such as English, Spanish, Russian, Italian, Japanese, Swedish, etc. are acceptable. Italian song selections may be taken from the 24/26 Italian anthologies, as well as other more recent Italian songs. This same information applies when the Winners are requested to send in more songs.