★ OPPORTUNITY FOR CHOIRS ★
I’m looking for choirs interested in recording some of my choral works:
to be featured on this website; a prominent choral music publisher’s site; YouTube, and other social media platforms.
Please use the Contact page to request more information.
The Unisson Choruses Festival on the May long weekend in Halifax was a huge success! The final concert included three new works commissioned for the festival. “The Commanded Heart” was my contribution performed by the TTBB Festival Chorus, with lyrics by Canadian poet, Ben Berg.
My heartfelt gratitude goes to all the members of the chorus, including our collaborative pianist and ‘cellist, led by master conductor Willi Zwozdesky. I couldn’t have asked for a more powerful and moving world premiere!
Are you a harpist? The score for “Harp Improvisation #1 – Introspection” is now available for purchase from JW Pepper!
I’m happy to report the world premier of “Come With Me to the Sea” performed by the Amabile Choirs in London, Ontario on March 26th, 2023!
February 12th, 2023
I would like to thank soprano Michelle Todd and Ensemble Resonance for giving an outstanding world premier performance of my setting of “The Cloths of Heaven“. The concert was sold-out well in advance! The audience was enthralled with the performance, showing their approval with thunderous applause. I couldn’t have asked for a better premier!
Thank you, Michelle Todd and Ensemble Resonance for your stellar performance; thank you, Instrumental Society of Calgary for hosting the concert!
I’m happy to announce the world premier performance of a new composition of mine on February 12th, 2023.
If you’re in the Calgary area, you’re invited to attend the first performance of my setting of “The Cloths of Heaven“, a romantic poem by Yeats. Ensemble Resonance have put together a wonderful program to celebrate their 25th anniversary!
You’re invited to watch the concert premier of “Harp Improvisation #1: Introspection”, performed by American harpist Danielle Kuntz. You’ll find it at the 19:30 mark.
I’ve just finished writing “Dancing Beneath the Stars” for SSA, SSAA, Unison or Two-part choirs; it’s a short, light flight of fancy in 6/8 time.
I’ve just completed “Come With Me to the Sea” for SATB choir with piano and optional ‘cello, (also available for SSAA and TTBB choirs). It’s a short, light piece in 6/8 time, following up on the success of “Come With Me on Horses“, published by Alliance Music.
“Come With Me to the Sea” can be ordered using the Contact page.
The Mississauga Chamber Singers have created a lovely video performance of “Requiem for the Innocent“, under the direction of Mervin Fick. It was created for the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation on Sept. 30th.
“Dialogue With Five Contemporary Canadian Choral Composers” published in the Winter 2022 edition of Choral Canada’s Anacrusis magazine.
“How to Commission a New Piece for Your Choir” article scheduled to be published in two parts; March 15th and 19th, 2022 in the American Choral Directors Association “ChoralNet” blog.
“Dialogue With Five Contemporary Canadian Choral Composers” published in the March / April 2022 edition of the American Choral Directors Association “Choral Journal”.
January 2022 – Stock Music on Pond 5
I have recently placed selected electronic and and instrumental works on Pond5, a stock licensing library. If you create video or film productions, this is a library worth visiting! My work can be heard at:
January 2022 – Art/Sound Installation at Loft 112
What an interesting concept! The “Boxed Stories Gallery” is a new exhibit at Loft112 art gallery in downtown Calgary. Each drawer contains a small art installation by a different artist.
It was a delight to collaborate with my sister, Jackie Bell, an artist and story-teller! Jackie created the story and illustrations and narrated the story. My job was to figure out how to create a soundtrack with narration, music, and a few sound effects to fit inside the drawer!
The exhibit is open to the public from January to June 2022. Details can be found at: https://www.loft112.org/
I’m working on my current commissioned project, “Covid Corvid vs. Riles & Me“, using digitally sampled instruments and environmental sounds.
The story and illustrations were created by Jacqueline E. Bell, commissioned for the “Boxed Stories” exhibit at Loft 112. Watch for the opening of the exhibit early in 2022!
ANACRUSIS MAGAZINE – “Interview With 3 Canadian Choral Composers” reprinted; originally published in the April 2021 edition of the American Choral Directors Association Choral Journal.
I’ve just finished a short movement of a new orchestral suite! Spitfire Audio issued a challenge to composers to create a new soundtrack for a one-and-a-half minute video. “Mists to Torrents” was born to meet that challenge.
I’m happy to update my status with the Canadian League of Composers from Professional Member to Emeritus Member! (Even though this reflects the number of years I’ve been a Professional Member along with reaching a certain age milestone, it still feels like an accomplishment!)
What’s this? Composing music for a TV series? Have I abandoned composing “serious” choral and instrumental music? All is not as it seems.
DC Entertainment and Spitfire Audio put out an open call for composers to reimagine the musical soundtrack for a specific clip from “Stargirl”. I have always been interested in learning more about composing cinematic soundtracks. Strong compositional skills are required, along with an additional set of skills; the ability to create musical moments that tie in precisely with the timing and emotional content of scenes on the screen; a solid understanding of the software used to create music digitally; and the ability to integrate the new music with the visual story.
This was a learning opportunity I couldn’t pass up. I pushed myself to learn some new skills and some new software. I enjoyed working on the challenge, and am happy with the result.
So, for your entertainment and amusement, I invite you to listen to the score I created for the Stargirl segment. DC Entertainment and Spitfire Audio will be adjudicating submissions from all composers, and awarding prizes to the top four. And of course, you’re invited to click SUBSCRIBE on my YouTube channel to be notified when I post my next video!
June 2021 – I am honoured to be commissioned by Unison Choruses Canada to create a new work for TTBB choir. The lyrics explore the “LGBT purge” by the Canadian government and military in the 20th century. The lyrics showcase a new poem by Canadian poet Ben Berg, with French translation by Jean-Baptiste Roux. The new work will be premiered at the Unison Choruses Festival in 2023.
You can read more about the new works commissioned for the festival at:
April 2021 – I’m happy to announce the publication of my new article, “Interview With 3 Canadian Choral Composers” in the April 2021 issue of ACDA Choral Journal. I interviewed Nancy Telfer, Jon Washburn and Larry Nickel, each of whom are senior, established composers who followed their own, unique career paths.
This is the first in a series of two articles. The second one, scheduled to be published later this year, is a set of interviews with five established mid-career Canadian choral composers.
March 2021 – The “Haul Away Joe” sea shanty project attracted 90 tenors and basses from around the world! Singers practiced and recorded their parts at home, which were then assembled into one recording. The results were rough and ready, but we all had fun!
March 2021 – J.W. Pepper is now distributing many of my works for school and community choirs, published by Hillview Cottage Music. This collection will continue to grow in the months ahead.
December 2020 – You are invited to read my new article posted Dec. 16th on ChoralNet. It’s called, “From India Ink to Digital Bits” – a look back at the development of technology in music over the past 50 years. It’s been an amazing journey as a performer and composer!
December 2020 – participated in the national “Navigating Copyright for Choirs in Canada” webinar hosted by Choral Canada.
December 2020 – finished writing my setting of “The Cloths of Heaven” by W. B. Yeats, for Soprano or Tenor soloist accompanied by piano or chamber orchestra.
October 2020 – participated in the national “Round Table for Composers and Conductors” hosted by Choral Canada. Discussed new, innovative choral music projects across Canada!
August 2020 – finished writing and recording “Alone / Together“, a new work for accomplished SATB choir with electronic soundtrack! The lyrics tell the story of feelings resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, moving from “alone in an unfamiliar landscape”, to “reaching out” to each other, closing with being and working “together”.
I am currently looking for a choir interested in tackling the premier of this work.
July 2020 – finished the recording of “Searching” by the “At Home Chorus“.
YouTube – https://youtu.be/XBb6RLTj-oI
SoundCloud – https://soundcloud.com/d-geoffrey-bell/searching
June 2020 – Participated in the “National Roundtable for Composers and Publishers” of choral music, hosted by Choral Canada. Discussed ideas, strategies and plans for choirs for the next two years.
April 2020 – Working with the “At Home Chorus“, sending scores and guide audio tracks by email, receiving individual recordings, and putting the tracks together in my temporary studio. At the same time, doing daily construction work on my new studio!
– collaborating with musicians across Canada online to record “virtual” performances of three of my compositions. Calling this project the “At Home Chorus“.
– interviewed by CTVNews.ca regarding my blog for parents who are suddenly at home with school-aged children:
– participated in ChoirAlberta video conference with 60+ members of the choral music community across Canada
February 2020 – finished writing “Searching” for SATB choir accompanied by ‘cello and glockenspiel.
– Finished writing “Songs of Love and Despair“, (SATB unaccompanied choir), a set of four poems by Sarah Teasdale about the
exhilaration of new love, a broken heart, and the despair that follows.
– Created new arrangements of “Come With Me on Horses” for SSAA and SATB choirs.
– Created new arrangements of “Three Haiku” for SSAA and SSATB choirs.
– Created new arrangements of “The Christmas Dove” for SSAA and SSAB choirs.
October 2019 – attended Music Conference Alberta 2019.
Spring 2019 – “Childhood Memories“, a collection of nine short works for piano, published by Palliser Music.
September 2018 – article in TEMPO Magazine about the Canada 150 ARMTA 85 commission of “Donkey Riding.“
May 2018 – “She’s Like the Swallow” published by Cypress Choral Music.
Spring 2018 – radio performance of “Inventions and Machines” in Australia.
October 26-28, 2017 – Appearance and presentation at Music Conference Alberta as one of the composers commissioned by ARMTA in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary. Premier performance of “Donkey Riding.“
August 2017 – “Donkey Riding” published by Palliser Music.
July 2017 – Received Canada Council travel grant for the world premier of “The Helios Triptych” in May 2017.
July 2017 – Prepared “The Canadian Seasons” song cycle for publication.
May 13, 2017 – World Premier of “She’s Like the Swallow,” performed by London Pro Musica in London, Ontario.
May 5, 2017 – World Premier of “The Helios Triptych,” performed by the Vancouver Chamber Choir in Vancouver.
April 2017 – Recording session of “Childhood Memories” by Han Ding in Calgary.
Spring 2017 – International Radio/Concert performance in Australia.
March 2017 – “The Helios Triptych” selected to be workshopped by Jon Washburn and the Vancouver Chamber Choir at the March session of Interplay.
Feb. 2017 – Commissioned by Alberta Registered Music Teachers Association to write a piece for violin and piano based on Canadian Folk song, “Donkey Riding.” Scheduled to be published by Palliser Music.
Fall 2016 – International Radio/Concert performance of “Three Haiku” in U.S.A.
September 2016 – Became a Professional Member of the Canadian League of Composers.
Spring 2016 – International Radio/Concert performance of “Inventions and Machines” in Australia.