Sir Ernest MacMillan Memorial Foundation - Award for 2012

The Foundation announces a $12,000 award for

Choral Conducting


The Sir Ernest MacMillan Memorial Foundation is pleased to announce its Award for 2012, in Choral Conducting. This is in recognition of Sir Ernest MacMillan’s celebrated career as a conductor, in particular his many years with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir (1942-1957) and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (1931-56). The Award is intended to support the artistic development and career advancement of a young conductor; it may be used to assist with travel, a workshop or study program, participation in a festival or competition, or other relevant purposes.

Candidates should be at an advanced stage of their musical education, under thirty years of age at March 1, 2012, and should be either Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada.

The application should include:
a) The applicant’s name, address, phone number, e-mail address, and signature. b) The applicant’s birth date and citizenship/resident status. c) A curriculum vitae of the applicant, with names of his/her principal teachers. d) An outline of the applicant’s proposed plan of study and/or performance, and other such information relevant to the application. e) Mention of any grants, which the applicant will receive or has applied for in support of his/her current career plans. f) Names of two referees, each of whom must be a recognized member of the musical profession, e.g., conductor, composer, performer, teacher, administrator; it is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that each referee sends, independent of the application, a confidential letter of recommendation to the address given below.

The application must be accompanied by six copies of a DVD recording of the applicant in both rehearsal and performance, public or private. The total timing of the DVD should be at least 15 minutes and not more than 30 minutes. The DVD must show the conductor leading an ensemble of singers, and the singers must be shown at some point in the video. There should be footage of the candidate shown full face (as seen by the musicians). The DVD will be used for selection purposes only, and will not be returned.

The recording technician and applicant must certify in writing that the recording is indeed of the applicant and that the recording has not been edited in any way other than in the placement of component items in sequence. All works must be identified, with timings given, and the date of the recording must be supplied.

Address for applications and letters of recommendation:
The Sir Ernest MacMillan Memorial Foundation c/o Prof. Robin Elliott Faculty of Music University of Toronto
80 Queen's Park Toronto, ON M5S 2C5

Applications and letters of recommendation must be received by January 31, 2012.

The selection process will be adjudicated by a jury of professional choral conductors representing different regions of Canada, appointed by the Foundation’s board of trustees. There will be two rounds in the selection process. In the preliminary round, based on the applications, the jury will select up to three finalists. It is expected that the finalists will be notified by February 28, 2012.

The finalists will participate in person in the final round of the selection process, which will take place during Canada’s National Choral Conference, PODIUM, in Ottawa on Saturday May 19, 2012. All finalists will rehearse the Elmer Iseler Singers for between 30 and 40 minutes in front of a jury and live audience. The costs of accommodation and travel will be provided for finalists who do not live in the Ottawa area. Finalists must agree to be available for media interviews.

Immediately following the final round, the jury will determine the winner, although it may also withhold its recommendation if it considers no applicant is of sufficiently high artistic standard. The jury’s determination will be final and not subject to appeal. The results of the competition will be announced at the Podium banquet on the evening of May 19.

Further information about the Sir Ernest MacMillan Memorial Foundation can be found at:


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