Bursaries and Composition Awards

Southwell Choral Society invites applications for its annual Choral and Music bursaries.  


2022 Southwell Choral Society Bursary and the David McIntosh Award

Southwell Choral Society is inviting applications for its annual Choral and Music bursaries. 

Closing date: Wednesday 20th April 2022

Each bursary, the Southwell Choral Society Bursary and
the David McIntosh Award, is for £500. They may be awarded separately or combined to the total value of £1000, at the discretion of the Awards Panel. Their purpose is to support the musical development of young people in the Southwell area; applications are invited from singers and instrumentalists pursuing any form of music-making. The award may be used to finance tuition, travel and the purchase of books or equipment.
Applicants MUST be resident within
a ten mile radius of Southwell Minster and be under the age of 25 by 1 September in the year of application.

For an application form please contact Mrs Thelma Clark 


6 Stenton Close, Southwell, Notts, NG25 0BJ

Tel:01636 813964 


Rules for application on next web page

The 2022 Nicholas Thorpe Composition Award
Prize £500

Closing date 31st July. Applicants must be 25 years old or younger on 31st July. 

Composers are invited to submit a work for Amateur Choral Society (no soloists) with piano, organ or no accompanying instrument.

To be performed by Southwell Choral Society in their Concert on 4th December 2022. 

The result will be announced on 1st September 2022. The prize winning work will be a short choral work of up to ten minutes long. The work must be performable by a mixed voice amateur choral society, without soloists, with piano, organ or no accompanying instrument. It is to be performed in a concert of seasonal music in which the Choral Society will be joined by Derwent Brass.

The composer is free to choose the text, which must fit the context of the concert and can be in any language; Christmas and other seasonal texts are appropriate but not a requirement.

The work must not have been previously performed. The score can be submitted electronically (PDF file) or in hard copy to reach the adjudicators by 31st July 2022. An audio version (live or synthesised) may also be submitted to support the score (optional).

Entries should be emailed to nick@thorpemusic.co.uk or posted to: The Nicholas Thorpe Composition Award, 13 Station Road, SOUTHWELL,  Notts. NG25 0ET 

Scores must be accompanied by full contact details and proof of age of the composer. The work will remain the property of the composer. A panel selected and chaired by the conductor of Southwell Choral Society will judge the entries. All entrants will be contacted on 1st September and the winner announced. The judges’ decision will be final. The organisers reserve the right not to award the prize. The winning composer will be invited to attend the performance and be presented with the prize. Southwell Choral Society will discuss with the prize-winner arrangements for the production of performance materials and be responsible for all aspects of the performance. 

We have not been able to award the prize on the last two occasions; below is some advice for composers.

Bear in mind the ability of the choir:

  • amateur singers do not have the same range as professionals
  • avoid extended passages of high or low notes
  • use mainly consonant intervals
  • key signatures with more than four sharps or flats are discouraging as are lots of accidentals
  • keep to common time signatures avoiding frequent changes
  • make rhythms easy to read

The choir sings mainly in four parts but occasional divisi is acceptable.

Any accompaniment should support the choir but be independent of it.

The audience is an important part of the equation; it likes to be challenged but should enjoy listening to your music.

Any potential applicants are invited to consult Nicholas Thorpe before submitting.