School of Music director receives choral composition prize

August 15, 2011

Indiana State University Director of the School of Music Nancy Cobb Lippens is the 2011 recipient of the Edwin Fissinger Choral Composition Prize.

North Dakota State University Music honors the legacy of its long-time choral conductor, Edwin Fissinger, through this annual choral composition competition. Cobb Lippens, who publishes her music under the pen name Nancy Hill Cobb, composed the chosen piece, "When Music Sounds."

"The text of the piece is about music and how it affects human beings," Cobb Lippens said. "It has a very accessible harmonic structure, yet is challenging to perform."

Cobb Lippens has known about this yearly contest and decided to apply this year because she had work that fit the guidelines for the prize. Winning the prize will have direct benefits for her as a composer.

"I will very much enjoy traveling to hear the North Dakota State University choirs premiere the work," Cobb Lippens said. "It means not only a premiere in North Dakota by a very competent choir, but also a publication of the piece by Pavanne Music."

The work will be premiered by the North Dakota State Concert Choir at 2 p.m. Oct. 2 in the Festival Concert Hall on the NDSU campus in Fargo. Cobb Lippens hopes the award means the piece will have multiple performances in the future.

This marks the second straight year Cobb Lippens has had one of her compositions premiered by another Midwestern university's music department. In 2010, a chamber ensemble from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point came to Indiana State for the first public performance of "Suite for Reeds."

Writer: Britany Dean, Indiana State University, media relations assistant, at 812-237-3773.