CWRU student Juniper Duncan received 3rd place in the America Prize in Choral Composition, University Division. The American Prize is a national non-profit competition in the performing arts featuring a wide range of content (opera, chamber music, vocal soloists) and divisions (high school, university, professional, community). Juniper’s 3rd place work, "and the universe said", was premiered by the Case Concert Choir in February 2022.
Of the work, Juniper said, “The larger work, Requiem (for the queer soul), was written over the course of a year or two, but I started it with writing 'and the universe said' during the last week of July in the summer in between my first two years of college. I hadn't written anything major for unaccompanied choir before (and I was going through some personal things at the time) and I felt the need to make something that was true to myself and something that really represented who I wanted to be as a person and a composer. While I personally don't think this movement sounds terribly different from the other movements in the requiem, it's definitely the one that brings me the most comfort to sing and listen to.”
Case Concert Choir will premiere another of her works, "O Daedalus", from her multi-movement work, To One Coming North, on Saturday, December 2, at 7:30 p.m. in Harkness Chapel.
Juniper Duncan is a 3rd-year Cognitive Science student at Case Western Reserve University. She began her life as a large group composer writing for high school a cappella and jazz ensembles (along with several solo piano and orchestral ventures) and graduated to the world of collegiate music in 2021 with the composition of the large-scale unaccompanied choral works Requiem (for the queer soul) and To One Coming North. In her time, the young composer and vocalist has received multiple accolades for her work and has had her work performed in concert in collaboration with multiple ensembles, including the Case Concert Choir and the Cleveland Chamber Choir. As a composer and performer also heavily involved in the world of academia, she hopes to keep pushing her voice forward in both the realms of STEM and music, creating and sharing her experiences along the way.
The American Prize
The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts is the nation's most comprehensive series of contests in the classical arts. The American Prize is nonprofit, unique in scope and structure, and is designed to evaluate, recognize and reward the best performers, ensembles, composers, directors and administrators in the United States, based on submitted recordings.
The American Prize has attracted thousands of qualified contestants from all fifty states since its founding, has awarded more than $125,000 in prizes in all categories since 2010, and is presented annually in many areas of the performing arts.