The Board of Directors of the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians rejoices and gives thanks in announcing that William A. and Nancy M. Raabe have pledged an additional gift of $25,000 to ALCM in order to expand the reach of the Raabe Prize.
In 1999 the Raabes gave a gift to ALCM to establish the William A. and Nancy M. Raabe Prize for Excellence in Sacred Composition. Since that time ALCM has awarded the Raabe Prize to a deserving composer in odd numbered years, announcing the prize winner at each ALCM biennial conference.
With this new gift, the Raabe Prize Fund will sponsor ALCM events or projects that match the original intent of the fund, which is to encourage composers to create new music for worship in the Lutheran tradition. Examples of sponsored events can include, but are not limited to, commissions, colloquia, educational events, and mentoring programs. The Raabe Prize for Excellence in Sacred Composition will continue in its current form.
For the first project of the expanded Raabe Prize, ALCM commissioned additional resources to accompany and enrich the new hymn that Susan Briehl and Zebulon Highben created in celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and the 30th anniversary of ALCM. The hymn itself, “God Alone Be Praised” (for which Zeb has provided two tunes), was premiered at the 2016 regional conferences. The two original settings for choir and assembly as well as additional commissioned resources are available for purchase from Augsburg Fortress.
The following additional resources were commissioned as part of the expanded Raabe Prize:
- Organ chorale prelude (easy organ setting and moderately advanced organ setting) – Kevin Hildebrand*
- Handbells (one stand-alone piece, one accompaniment for singing) – John Behnke
- Choral concertato (one for each tune) – Zeb Highben
- Piano (one stand-alone piece, one accompaniment for singing) – John Helgen
- Praise Band (audio recording and print materials) – Kip Fox