Gordon Appleton Memorial Composition Competition

In memorial to the late Gordon Appleton, we invite submissions of new, previously un-submitted and unpublished settings of the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis.

An independent, professional adjudicator will consider all submissions and select a winner for performance by one of the RSCM regional choirs, and possible subsequent publication by the RSCM.

In acknowledgement to his considerable work in furthering church music education, not least for the RSCM, compositions are eligible for consideration from anyone aged 30 and under on 31/1/19.

Settings may be for choir, with or without accompaniment, and should use the standard, English-language texts from the Book of Common Prayer. Any style is acceptable, but we are looking for an original, authentic voice and response to the text and so this is not an exercise in pastiche.

Submissions should be sent by email to: by 31st January 2019.

Terms & Conditions

  • The competition is open to all composers aged 30 or under on 31 January 2019
  • Composers must set text of the Magnificat & Nunc dimittis
  • The work must be original and solely the work of the composer
  • The work should not have been previously published, or performed, or awarded any other prize
  • Composers may enter no more than one work (the two canticles counting as a single, paired piece)
  • Entries may be submitted from 1 December 2018
  • The closing date for submission of entries is midnight GMT on 31 January 2019
  • The Judges will be looking for entries that, in their view, demonstrate the most creative and impressive balance between musical imagination in the setting of the words and appropriateness to use in worship.
  • No correspondence relating to the judges’ decisions will be entered into
  • The RSCM reserves the right not to announce a winning work
  • The composer of the winning composition must assign the entire copyright and all right, title and interest in the work to the Royal School of Church Music, in consideration of which, the RSCM will pay royalties
  • The competition and publication of the winning work shall be governed by and construed exclusively in accordance with the Laws of England and Wales, submitting to the authority of the English courts