Seán Ó Riada Composer Competition Open for Submissions

John Fitzpatrick of Cork International Choral Festival and composer James May, winner of last year’s competition.

Seán Ó Riada Composer Competition Open for Submissions

Cork International Choral Festival competition seeking submissions of new choral work by 6 December.

The Cork International Choral Festival is now accepting submissions for the 2020 Seán Ó Riada Composition Competition. The competition is open to Irish composers and composers resident in Ireland and offers a cash prize plus the Seán Ó Riada trophy. The winning work will be performed by Chamber Choir Ireland at the festival’s Gala Concert in St Fin Barre’s Cathedral on Friday 1 May 2020, conducted by Paul Hillier. The winning composer will also take part in a seminar on new choral music.  

Applications are welcomed from composers of any level of experience. The composition should be a new piece of work, written for a capella choir and up to five minutes in length. The deadline for applications is Friday 6 December.

The Seán Ó Riada Competition was launched in 1972, celebrating the life and music of composer Seán Ó Riada, with the aim of encouraging Irish amateur adult choirs to perform new works in the Irish language. The competition is now open to works in both Irish and English and aims to recognise Irish choral composers and contribute to the repertoire of Irish choral music. Previous winners of the competition include Solfa Carlile, Rhona Clarke, Patrick Connolly, Frank Corcoran, Séamas de Barra, Eoghan Desmond, Amanda Feery, Donal Sarsfield and last year’s winner, James May.

For further details on the competition and how to apply, visit

Published on 21 October 2019

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