“Songwriting is a highly creative process. We must encourage creativity and imagination in children so that they can reach their full potential.”

Don Spencer (ACMF Founder & CEO)

ACMF’s Annual National Songwriting Competition has been inspiring imagination, self-expression and emotional wellbeing in school-aged children and youth for the last 20 years. It has seen many aspiring young musicians flourish and pursue their passionate love of music and song. The competition is free and open now for any school aged children (K-12). To enter or make a donation visit www.acmf.com.au

Read some of the inspiring stories below from previous competition winners.

Lucy Parle, a winner in 2020’s competition has recently laid claim to 1st prize in her category at the world’s largest, and highly competitive International Songwriting Competition – with judges including Dua Lipa, Coldplay, and Tom Waits for the same song: “Back Up”. Lucy has since signed a record and publishing deal, and says she finds songwriting crucial and therapeutic. Lucy said, “I first entered the ACMF Songwriting Competition when I was 14 years old. I put my thoughts into songs, and people relate to them. “Back Up” is a personal and emotional song to me – so it was really rewarding to have it recognised.”

Alice Hurwood (APRA AMCOS Young Songwriter of the Year 2020) says, “I have been entering the ACMF competition for many years, and to win in my final year of entering in year 12 was a dream come true. Music has always been such a big part of my life. Songwriting is… a way for me to express and communicate things I’m not sure how to say.” Alice is currently studying at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and often performs with the university symphony orchestra and other ensembles. She has begun teaching cello to children this year, and reports that she loves sharing her passion, and seeing the joy that comes from her students learning to play an instrument.

Samantha Timcke (APRA AMCOS Young Songwriter of the Year 2019) reported that the ACMF’s Songwriting Competition allowed her to have something to work towards each year. She says, “It gave me a reason to strive to write the best songs that I could. Writing music and having it heard by the judges gave me the inner belief that through songwriting – you can reach out to people, and impact them through music. Winning the competition gave me the confidence to continue writing and composing original music, and to pursue music as a career. Songwriting is such a gift, and the prize money allowed me to further my ambition” Samantha is now a jazz vocal student at the Elder Conservatorium of Music, Adelaide University.

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