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Who inspires you in our Northwestern ACDA choral community?

  • A conductor you admire for their innovation in rehearsal or in collaboration?

  • A choir and conductor that excel in equitable community-building?

  • A choir focused on a distinctive extra-musical mission? 

  • A choir and conductor that pursue peace and justice, that enhance social and emotional well-being?

  • A conductor and choir that foster and promote diversity and inclusion?


NW ACDA calls for your recommendations for Nominated Choirs to be featured in “Getting to the Heart” Discovery Sessions. This pilot program for the 2022 conference bridges the space between Interest Sessions and Performing Choirs, celebrating process, innovation, community, and mission in choirs. We seek NW ACDA members' recommendations or self-recommendations to be made to NW ACDA and state ACDA leadership (Repertoire & Resources Chairs, Presidents, Past-Presidents, and Presidents-Elect). Read below for an overview and instructions on recommending a choir to NW ACDA and State ACDA Leadership.

Call for Nominated Choirs:

“Getting to the Heart”

Discovery Sessions

Celebrating Process, Innovation, Community, Compassion, and Mission

Recommendations Due: April 15, 2021

Overview: “Getting to the Heart” Discovery Sessions
These sessions celebrate the journey of creative, human-centered rehearsal processes that foster community, and/or mission beyond that of the music-making in and of itself. Choirs presenting a Discovery Session may combine ensemble singing, information sharing, demonstration of process, multimedia sharing, and/or ensemble members sharing experiences of community-building, compassion, or mission. These 25-minute sessions will share how choral music becomes a vehicle for any of the following:

  • Innovation in rehearsal, outreach, collaboration, teaching, and/or musical focus

  • A particular focus on equitable community-building through choral music

  • An extra-musical mission that is an essential part of the group’s existence

  • "Fostering and promoting choral singing in the pursuit of peace and justice that enhances social emotional well-being" (National ACDA Purposes)

  • “Fostering and promoting diversity and inclusion through active engagement with
    underrepresented choral musicians and potential choral participants” (National ACDA Purposes)

These Discovery Sessions intentionally create a space between Interest Sessions and Concert Sessions that
will provide attendees a window into the processes behind what make these ensembles distinctive in an
acoustically beautiful and accessible space.

The nomination process aims to address application barriers for these choral ensembles:

  • The cost of the audition application (free)

  • Lack of logistical support to appear at a conference

  • Difficulty in producing high quality recordings due to poor venues, equipment, or the pandemic

  • Ensembles who believe they do not fit the historical model of an ACDA conference choir

  • Ensembles for which it may be a challenge to prepare a 25-minute set of repertoire

Recommendation Process

Due April 15, 11:59 pm PDT

  • NW ACDA Members are encouraged to send self- or peer-recommendations to nominators by emailing them directly by April 15:

  • Nominators will identify conductors/ensembles and nominate them to apply.

  • These nominators will partner with and support ensembles throughout the nomination process.

  • Nominators include:

    • NW ACDA Board Repertoire & Resource Chairs

    • State ACDA Leadership (Presidents, Presidents-Elect, and Past-Presidents)

    • State ACDA Repertoire & Resource Chairs

  • R & R Chair/State President nominators will submit a short summary of the recommendation.

  • For nominated choirs invited to perform on a “Getting to the Heart” Discovery Session, the leader/conductor must be an ACDA member at the time they accept the invitation. Leaders are not required to be members at the time of application, though membership is encouraged.

Application Materials

Due June 1, 11:59 pm PDT

Leaders of Nominated Choirs apply with a nominated choir application. The leader submits:

  • A short description of the ensemble’s impact (e.g. mission statement or description, what
    distinguishes its approach, distinctive goals of conductor and ensemble, overall impact of
    program on the lives of singers and their community)

  • Description of focus on what will be presented, including general repertoire description

  • Ensemble demographic questionnaire

  • One or more material(s) that demonstrates the ensemble’s impact, which may include:

    • Rehearsal audio/video,

    • Promotional audio/video,

    • Website or print materials,

    • Singer testimonials, and/or

    • Performance audio/video

  • Optional additional materials that may contextualize activity:

    • Performance programs

    • Repertoire lists


Invited nominated choirs will be responsible for costs of presenting at the conference, such
as travel and lodging. NW ACDA acknowledges the financial barriers to presenting or performing at a
conference. As such, we are committed to provide ensemble leaders with fundraising strategists, who
can provide assistance. There is the potential that limited funding may be available from state ACDA
organizations or NW ACDA to support participation by ensembles, but due to the pandemic, this
financial support will not be known until summer 2021.

Nomination Results will be emailed to applicants by June 30, 2021

Questions? Contact NW ACDA President-Elect Steven Zielke:

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