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 Joshua Shank

[b. 1980] Joshua Shank’s works have been widely performed by educational and professional ensembles alike. His works often feature the human voice, and focus on social justice or the amplification of marginalized communities. His work, capable of anything, celebrated the passage of marriage equality in the United States, and his oratorio, Magnificat for the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, tells the story of the movement of Argentine mothers who campaigned for their children who had been “disappeared” by the military junta that formally governed the nation. His work, Primavera en silencio, is based on American conservationist Rachel Carson’s landmark writing on climate change, and his alleluia (from quarantine) was commissioned by a consortium of ensembles from around the United States in order to raise money for gigging musicians whose livelihoods have been decimated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He has been commissioned by ensembles such as The Choral Project, Conspirare, the Lorelei Ensemble, and the Young New Yorkers’ Chorus. From 2004 to 2014 he served as Composer-In-Residence for the Minneapolis-based professional choir, The Singers: Minnesota Choral Artists, where he collaborated annually to expand and invigorate the repertoire for professional-caliber ensembles through innovative programming as well as new works written specifically for the choir. In 2002, he became the youngest composer ever awarded the prestigious Raymond W. Brock Composition Award by the American Choral Directors Association. The winning piece, Musica animam tangens (“Music touches the soul”), was premiered in Avery Fisher Hall at the Lincoln Center and has since been performed and recorded from Los Angeles to South Africa. His music was featured in a documentary about the extensive choral tradition in the Upper Midwest, Never Stop Singing, and his published works have sold over 150,000 copies worldwide.

Joshua received his undergraduate degree in Music Education from Luther College, and his doctorate in Composition at the University of Texas at Austin where he studied with the late opera composer, Daniel Catán. A native of Minnesota, he currently lives in the Boston area with his husband, Robert W. Ressler, a sociologist who focuses on child, youth, and family policy in education, and their cat, Obergefell. Joshua is an avid cyclist and is always attempting to be a better cook.


Joshua Shank has 21 titles published with Santa Barbara.
Click on any title below to view the complete score and hear a recording if available.

Arrow and The Song, The SSA SBMP 597 Audio Audio
Arrow and The Song, The SATB SBMP 605 Audio Audio
Autumn SATB div. SBMP 560 Audio Audio Video
Bar’bry Allen TB SBMP 846 Audio Audio
Boy Who Picked Up His Feet to Fly, The SATB SBMP 450 Audio Audio Video
Boy Who Picked Up His Feet to Fly, The TTBB SBMP 1022 Audio Audio
David's Lamentation SATB SBMP 416 Audio Audio Video
Divine Image, The SATB SBMP 491 Audio Audio
From Where I Stood SATB SBMP 822 Audio Audio
Gabriel's Message SATB / solo quartet SBMP 644 Audio Audio Video
Go, Tell it on the Mountain SATB div. SBMP 580 Audio Audio Video
Musica animam tangens SATB SBMP 487 Audio Audio Video
Naalah SATB SBMP 923 Audio Audio
Sleeping Out: Full Moon SATB SBMP 769 Audio Audio
Snow by Morning SSA SBMP 445 Audio Audio
Spring SATB div. SBMP 1184 Audio Audio
Summer SATB div. SBMP 1165 Audio Audio
Three Nightsongs SSAA SBMP 598 Audio Audio
Two Sisters, The TB SBMP 936 Audio Audio
when god decided to invent SATB SBMP 693 Audio Audio
winter SATB/solo quartet SBMP 534 Audio Audio Video

Audio = See the complete score    Audio = Hear recording   Video = Watch performance video

The Harbor
Brian A. Foy