Julius Herford Dissertation Prize

Sponsored by Classical Movements

The 2019 Julius Herford Dissertation Prize Call for Nominations
Download Nomination Requirements and Procedures
Each year the Julius Herford Prize Subcommittee of the Research and Publications Committee accepts nominations for the outstanding doctoral terminal research project in choral music. Projects are eligible if they comprise the principal research component of the degree requirements, whether the institution defines the project as a “dissertation,” “document,” “thesis,” or “treatise,” etc.

When a dissertation may be nominated:

  • The prize name's date (above) indicates the year in which the relevant doctoral degree was conferred.
  • Dissertations must be nominated in the calendar year following the year in which the degree was conferred.
  • The prize is awarded in the calendar year following the year of nomination. Thus, the dissertation of a student with a 2019 degree can be nominated between Jan. 1 and Jun. 1, 2020; the prize will be awarded in 2021 (at the national 2021 ACDA conference).

The award:
The winner will be awarded a $1,000 cash prize and a plaque. The committee reserves the right to award two prizes or no prizes in any given year.

Nomination Requirements and Procedure:

  1. An institution may submit only one document for that year’s prize. In the event that there are two nominations of equal merit from one school, the letter from the Dean, Director or Chair of the music school (described below) must justify the additional nomination. The submitting faculty member, institution and/or the writer must be a current member of ACDA in good standing.
  2. To nominate a dissertation, send by U. S. mail:
    1. A signed letter from the Dean, Director, or Chair of the music school recommending that the dissertation be considered for the Herford prize. (Letters from the Chair of the choral area are not acceptable.) The letter must include the following information:
      1. the full name of the student
      2. the year in which that student's degree was granted
      3. the full title of the dissertation
    2. An abstract of the dissertation, from which any material identifying the student or institution has been removed.
    3. An unbound copy of the dissertation (it may be double-sided). Excepting the title page, any material that identifies the student or the institution must be excised from the document before it is submitted.
    4. The full name, title, and complete contact information for the area faculty member making the submission.
    5. The full name, current position(s), and complete contact information for the dissertation's author (USPS address, email address and phone number(s)).
  1. The dissertation and accompanying materials must be received at the national office (address below) by the date announced below (and in Choral Journal). Faxed material will not be accepted.
  2. All materials must be submitted together in one envelope.

If one or more of these requirements is not met, the dissertation will be eliminated from consideration.
Nominations for the 2019 Julius Herford Dissertation Prize must be received between Jan. 1 and Jun. 1, 2020.

Mail applications to:

Sundra Flansburg 
ACDA National Office
545 Couch Dr
Oklahoma City, OK 73102-2207
phone: 405/232-8161

Congratulations to Dr. Amanda Kate Weber
Winner of the 2018 Julius Herford Dissertation Prize

"Choral Singing and Communal Mindset: A Program Evaluation of the Voices of Hope Women's Prison Choir" (University of Minnesota)

Dr. Weber is Minister of Music and the Arts at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Minneapolis, and the founder and artistic director of Voices of Hope (women’s prison choir at the Minnesota Correctional Facility, Shakopee, MN).  Prior to this she was adjunct professor at Concordia University (St. Paul, MN) and at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. She has also been a speaker at the TEDx Minneapolis Salon (2016) and has contributed to "Hear My Voice: A Prison Prayerbook," published by Augsburg Fortress (2019).  She received her D.M.A. in conducting from the University of Minnesota, where she worked under Prof. Kathy Saltzman Romey, Dr. Matthew Mehaffey, Dr. Kelley Harness, and Dr. Keitha Hamann. She holds an M.M. in choral conducting from Yale University’s Institute of Sacred Music, and a B.A. in music and art from Luther College.

 Previous Winners

2017 - Dr. Alison Allerton, for "'Leave All That You Have, That You May Take All': What Hugo Distler's Totentanz Reveals About His Life and Music." (Louisiana State University)

2016 - Dr. Michael Driscoll, for "Jan Dismas Zelenka’s ‘Dixit Dominus’ Settings Within the Context of the Dresden Hofkapelle." (Boston University)

2016 - Dr. Carolyn Rose Rynex, for “Arabesque and the Early Music Influence in Debussy’s Trois Chansons de Charles d’Orléans.” (Arizona State University)

2015- Dr. Allison Fromm, for “Aaron Copland’s In the Beginning: context and creative process.”  (University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana)

2015 - Dr. Michael Slon, for “Leonard Bernstein – The Crisis and Revision of Faith: Kaddish, Chichester Psalms, and Mass.”  (Indiana University)

2014 - Thomas J. Tropp, for “Cantaten in Musik gesetzt von W. A. Mozart: The Contrafacta Cantatas, K. Anh. 124-130.”(Northwestern University)

2014 - Cory D. Wikan, for “Robert Shaw and the Brahms Requiem, op 45: A Conductor’s Approach to Performing a Masterpiece.” (Boston University)

2013 - Trey Davis, for "‘No one imagined…’: ennobled suffering in David Lang’s the little match girl passion, An examination of profane pietism amid sacred form.” (Texas Tech University)

2012 - Christopher Shepard, for "Evolution and Revolution: J.S. Bach's Mass in B minor, BWV 232 in New York City, 1900-1980." (University of Sydney)

2011 - Kevin O'Brien, for “Russell Woollen: "Catalogue and Contextual Examination of the Sacred Music.” (The Catholic University of America)

2010: Michael McGaghie, for “Macaronic Things: Thornton Wilder and the Late Choral Music of Dominick Argento.” (Boston University)

2009 - Brian T. Russell, for "The Psalm Settings of Telemann: A Study in Performance Practice with Critical Editions of Seven Psalms for SATB Voices and Orchestra." (Eastman School of Music)

2008 - Kevin Leong, for "The Hymn Settings of Ludwig Senfl's Liber vesperarum festorum solennium, D-Mbs Mus. Ms. 52." (Boston University)

2007 - Mark Chaney, for "Four Motets from the Florilegium Portense." (Ohio State University)

2007 - Robert Gehrenbeck, for "An analysis of Giles Swaynes CRY, Magnificat I, Missa Tiburtina, and Stabat Mater." (Indiana University)

2006 - Robert Lamb, for "Michel-Richard de Lalande's In convertendo Dominus: A Performance Edition with Performing Commentary." (University of Cincinnati)

2005 - Laurier Fagnan, for "The Acoustical Effects of the Core Principles of the Bel Canto Method on Choral Singing." (University of Alberta/IRCAM)

2005 - Christopher Jackson, for "An Examination, Reinterpretation and Application of Selected Performance Practices in Four Motets of Luca Marenzio (1553-1599): Implications for a Modern Choral Performance Context." (University of Arizona)

2004 - Timothy Newton, for "A Study and Critical Ediition of Samuel Capricornus’s Theatrum musicum (1669, 1670) and Continuatio theatri musici (1669)." (University of Illinois)

2003 - none selected

2002 - Elizabeth Zobel, for "Benjamin Britten's War Requiem." (University of Colorado)

2001 - James John, for “Johannes Brahms’s Nänie, Op. 82: A Study in Context and Content.” (Eastman School of Music)

2000 – Andrew Kuster, for "Stravinsky's Topology: An Examination of his Twelve-Tone Works through Object-Oriented Analysis of Structural and Poetic-Expressive Relationships with Special Attention to his Choral Works and Threni." (University of Colorado)

1999 - Kirin Nielsen, for "The Spiritual Madrigals of Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina." (University of Illinois – Urbana)

1998 - none selected

1997 - Richard Sparks, for "The Swedish Choral Miracle: A Cappella Choral Music." (University of Cincinnati)

1996 - none selected

1995 - Betty Karol Fairchilds Wilson, for "Choral Pedagogy: Crossroads of Theory and Practice in Sixteenth-Century Germany." (Boston University)

1994 - David Newby, for "Igor Stravinsky's Oedipus rex: Literary background, musical structure, and dramatic symbolism." (Indiana University)

1993 - James Armstrong, for "Litaniae Laurentanae: Sacred Music at the Viennese Imperial Court, ca. 1700-1783." (University of Wisconsin – Madison)

1992 - Marika Kuzma, for "Dmitrii Stepanovich Bortnianskii (1751-1825): An introduction to the composer through an edition of his Choral Concertos Priidite, vospoim and Hlasom moim." (Indiana University)

1991 - Edward J. Lundergan, for "Benjamin Britten's War Requiem: stylistic and technical sources." (University of Texas at Austin)

1991 - A. Christopher Munn, for "Medieval and Renaissance prescriptions regarding text underlay and their application to music of the fifteenth century." (University of Oklahoma)

1990 - Christine De Catanzaro, for "Sacred music in Mozart's Salzburg: authenticity, chronology, and style in the church works of Cajetan Adlgasser." (University of North Carolina)

1989 - Carmen Helena Téllez, for "Musical form and dramatic concept in Handel's Athalia."(Indiana University)

1988 - Melinda Pauly O'Neal, for "Berlioz's L'Enfance du Christ: trilogie sacrée, op. 25: a conductor's analysis for performance." (Indiana University)

1987 - Stanley B. Wold, for " Eskil Hemberg-Swedish composer, choral conductor, and administrator: a survey of his works." (University of Cincinnati)

1986 - Craig Jon Westendorf, for "The textual and musical repertoire of the Spruchmotette." (University of Illinois – Urbana)

1985 - Leonard Ratzlaff, for "A conductor's preparatory analysis of Anton Bruckner's Te Deum." (University of Iowa)

1984 - G. Roberts Kolb, for "Tours MS. 168: The music of Guillaume Bouzignac." (University of Illinois – Urbana)

1983 - Catherine Rose Melhorn, for "Mendelssohn's Die erste Walpurgisnacht." (University of Illinois – Urbana)

1982 - Chester Lee Alwes, Jr., for "Georg Otto's Opus musicum novum (1604) and Valentin Geuck's Novum et insigne opus (1604): a musico-liturgical analysis of two collections of gospel music from the court of Hesse-Kassel." (University of Illinois – Urbana)

1981 - Graeme Cowen, for "Igor Stravinsky's Threni: a conductor's study for performance." (Indiana University)