Guild of Temple Musicians 2017 Ben Steinberg Young Composer Award: First Place!

Russell Nadel wins the Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award for the second time


Schaumburg, IL, December 12, 2016 - Russell Nadel has won the 2017 Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award. This is Nadel's second win; he first won the award in 2010.

Nadel has won the $1500 award for his composition Tov L'Hodot a setting of Psalm 92. David Shukiar, Guild of Temple Musicians Vice President of Special Projects, said of the work: "Our jury found the award-winning piece to be well written with really lovely and interesting harmonies.  We thought it was an appropriately challenging piece for most amateur choirs." This year's award criteria stipulated that the pieces submitted should be written for an advanced volunteer SATB choir, with or without keyboard accompaniment. Shukiar continued that Nadel's Tov L'Hodot would "inspire the choir to rise to the occasion to bring out their best.  The jury found the work to be really spirited and uplifting and look forward to it having a long life in the synagogue and concert halls." Nadel also won the Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award in 2010 for Shabbat Cycle, a three-movement composition for soprano soloist and piano.

Nadel is a graduate of the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland. He earned a Master's degree in Music Composition and a Bachelor's degree in Music Composition and Music Education. Nadel has written more than a dozen commissioned compositions for a variety of ensembles and organizations including the Organization of American Kodály Educators, ARTSEDGE (the educational program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts), the Washington Master Chorale, the Vancouver Chamber Choir, the Alturas Duo, Apple Orange Pair, and the Woodbridge Flute Choir. He has won numerous awards for his compositions, including the 2010 Guild of Temple Musicians Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award, the 2013 Mu Phi Epsilon Original Composition Contest, the 2011 Ruth Boskhoff Composition Prize, and more.

Nadel is an Orff Schulwerk Certified music educator and currently serves as the Past President of the Middle Atlantic Chapter of the American Orff Schulwerk Association. This is his eleventh year teaching elementary general and choral music, and is currently in his sixth year teaching at The Potomac School in McLean, Virginia.


The jury for the 2017 Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award consisted of renowned composers Cantor Jonathan Comisar, Steve Cohen, Paul Richards, and David Shukiar. David Shukiar, the Vice President of Special Projects for the Guild of Temple Musicians, serves as the coordinating juror and facilitator of the award. Russell Nadel will receive the Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award for Tov L'Hodot at the 2017 American Conference of Cantors - Guild of Temple Musicians Convention in Las Vegas, June 25-29, where his work will be premiered.

The Guild of Temple Musicians, an affiliate of the American Conference of Cantors, is dedicated towards enriching the Judaic musical knowledge and expertise of its membership, and the Jewish populace in general, through continuing education and development. This is the 26th year of the GTM Ben Steinberg Young Composer's Award. The purpose of the project is to encourage young Jewish composers to write appropriate, serious works for synagogue and concert, to swell the ranks of Jewish composers and encourage continued interest in the field, and to build an increasing body of new Jewish works for presentation. For more information about this award and the Guild of Temple Musicians visit


Marla Aviva Bentley, Vice President Communications and Publicity

Guild of Temple Musicians, an Affiliate of the American Conference of Cantors 

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