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The Songwriting Prize

Australia’s largest live performance songwriting competition, and first with a mental health focus. Now in its 9th year and bigger than ever!

Entries are open this year from the Friday 1st March to Friday 10th May 2024. The theme for this year is ‘Acceptance‘ and we look forward to entries opening very soon!

What is The Songwriting Prize?

Every year we host a nationwide songwriting competition, The Songwriting Prize, inviting songwriters, from all across Australia, to write and/or submit an original song in response to a mental health theme.

The Songwriting Prize judges shortlist songs from set groups to perform at a regional Semi Final. We hold regional Semi Finals across the country during Jul-Sep, and this year that includes events in eight different States. Previous years have seen events in Adelaide, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Newcastle, Perth, Sydney and Wagga Wagga. The finalists, picked from across our Semi Finals, will then go on to perform, again, at our Grand Final with one winner taking out the coveted spot of The Songwriting Prize Overall Winner.

Over the years, we have seen thousands of musicians come through our songwriting competitions. Previous winners include: Tempus Sun (2016, VIC), Seb Mont (2017, VIC), Leonie Kingdom (2018, QLD), Velvet Bloom (2019, VIC), NEAV (2020, NSW), BOI (2021, NSW), Timothy Wolf (2022, VIC) and last year’s winner; Chloe Gill (2023, NSW)

For Songwriters

The Songwriting Prize is the largest live performance songwriting competition in Australia, and was the first with a mental health focus, so we encourage artists to be raw, vulnerable and write something to reflect each years’ theme.

We welcome songs from all genres and categories. Songs might be just lyrics, music, or both. We do not judge based on the quality of the recording, or the performance, but on the songwriting itself, and its relation to the theme.

This year we are working on increasing our prize pool and continuing to offer prizes for our Overall Winner, all Grand Finalists, all Semi Finalists and the Top 50 from the preliminary judging pool. Full details of the prize pool will be revealed shortly.

The theme for the 2024 competition is ‘Acceptance‘ and entries open on Friday 1st March 2024 AEST.

For Music Fans

After the preliminary round is completed each year, we invite you to attend one of our regional Semi Finals across various locations in Australia, and also to our Grand Final, to show your support for emerging artists performing at their most vulnerable.

Each event will feature each shortlisted song, being performed live by the songwriter or another musician. Our events have been described as “supportive”, “spell-binding” and “healing”. Be prepared for a night of community building, togetherness and incredible music.

Where words fail, music speaks. -Hans Christian Andersen