The ASCAP Foundation has announced the recipients of their 48th Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Awards for outstanding print, broadcast and new media coverage of music. The Awards were established in 1967 to honor the memory of composer, critic and commentator Deems Taylor (1885-1966), who also served for six years as president of ASCAP. In 2014 the awards were renamed to also honor the memory of Virgil Thomson (1896–1989), one of the leading American composers and critics of the 20th Century, and a former member of the ASCAP board of directors. This year’s awards are made possible by the generous support of the Virgil Thomson Foundation. The inaugural ASCAP Foundation “Loved the Liner Notes” Award was established and is funded by ASCAP Foundation President, Paul Williams. All in all, twelve awards were announced, significantly fewer than in previous years. Among the other 2016 awardees are: composer Kirke Mechem, who received the Nicolas Slonimsky Award for Outstanding Musical Biography for his memoir, Believe Your Ears: Life of a Lyric Composer; composer and Access Contemporary Music executive director Seth Boustead, who received the Radio Broadcast Award for Relevant Tones, the world’s only weekly syndicated radio program featuring the music of living composers, which was launched at WFMT in Chicago in 2011; and Matt Mendez, who received a Concert Article award for “No Strings Attached: A Prism on the Saxophone Quartet” which was written for NewMusicBox.
The Judging Panel for 2016 are ASCAP members Jonathan David, Julie Flanders, David Massengill, Paul Moravec. A complete list of the 2016 awardees is available on the ASCAP Foundation website.