Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition (Fall, odd years)


The next Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition will take place at the Texoma Region Conference in Fall 2023. 

The Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition alternates with the American Negro Spiritual Categories; the top five regional winners advance to the National Student Audition (NSA) rounds, as with all other NSA-eligible categories. Additional information about the history of this composer and repertoire, and the national levels of the competition, can be found on the Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition website.

The purpose of this competition is to restore authenticity to the performance of the classically-arranged Spiritual, one of America’s unique contributions to world culture. Characteristics of Gospel and Jazz, styles that developed later but are far more popular and ubiquitous, have so corrupted Spiritual performance that authentic practice is in danger of being lost. The competition seeks further to promote the truth that Spirituals, like Art Songs, can be successfully performed by all people, not only by the African Americans who created them, and require only the same study that one devotes to any art song or aria.

Official Repertoire Requirements: NATS has created a specific list of approved repertoire for this competition. Only repertoire from the approved list may be sung. You can view the approved repertoire list and additional details on the Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition website.

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