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1. When may I submit my application?
You may submit your application anytime between February 17 and April 4, 2016 at 11:59 pm PST.

2. If I don’t live in Minneapolis, MN, St. Paul, MN, Dallas County, TX or Seattle or King County, WA, can I apply to The Songwriting Challenge? 
Not this year, but in future years we hope to expand. 

3. If I don’t have much experience writing songs, may I still apply? 
Yes, we encourage students of all backgrounds and levels of experience to apply.

4. If I wrote a song that was not specifically for a musical theater show, may I still use that song to apply? 
Yes, as long as you can fill in the narrative musical theater information on the application:

  • Which character is singing this song? 
  • Who is this character singing to? What is the time and place of the story?
  • What inspired this song?

5. Do I need to record my song professionally? 
No. All you need is a smart phone with a recording application to record your song to create a file to upload to the online application form. 

6. If I use the Voice Memo app on my iPhone to record my song, and create an mp3, can I directly upload it to the application when using my iPhone to apply?
We recommend that if you're using the Voice Memo app on the iPhone to forward it to a different device, and then fill out the full application on your computer or tablet. If you choose to fill out the full application on your iPhone, follow this workaround to upload the Voice Memo mp3 into the application:

  • Sync your iPhone with iTunes (make sure you have Sync Voice Memos option checked under Music tab)
  • In your iTunes library, go to iTunes > Preferences > General and under "When you insert a CD" click on Import Settings
  • Change that to MP3
  • Go to your iTunes library and find your voice memo (sort by Date Added or use search feature)
  • Right click on the Voice Memo and choose Create MP# Version
  • Find the newly created MP3 version (it should be right under or above the original if you are sorted by name; if you are sorted by date, scroll to the most recently added because it will be considered a recent add)
  • Right click on the song title and choose Show in Finder
  • Finder will open to where the Voice Memo is -- remember this location or drag the MP3 version to your entry submission

7. If I am homeschooled but qualify as a high school student, may I apply? 
Yes, as long as you have the high school grade level equivalent.

8. How many applications may I submit? 
Each student may submit one application. If you are part of a songwriting team, that counts as your one application, and you can still only submit once.  

9. When is the exact deadline for applications? 
Monday, April 4, 2016 at 11:59PM PST.

10. How will I know if my application was fully uploaded and accepted? 
You will receive a confirmation email from songwriting-support@getopenwater.com after you hit the SUBMIT button for your application.

11. What happens if I accidentally submit a partial application? 
If you do not fill out the required information, your application will not be eligible, and we will not be able to review it. You will not be able to make any changes to your application once you hit the SUBMIT button.

12. How will my original song be judged? 
Each song will be judged on four components:

  • Musical Theater: How well does the song drive the plot, bring settings or characters to life?  
  • Composition: How well do the music and/or melody work together with the lyrics to demonstrate a sophisticated and clear structure? 
  • Lyrics: How well do the lyrics service the song, plot, and/or character development?
  • Overall Inspiration and Artistic Merit: How well does the song achieve overall artistic quality?

13. If I am having technical difficulties, or have other questions, who can I contact? 
Email us at songwriting-support@getopenwater.com.