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Music Unites the World Songwriting Contest

ETM-LA students perform last year’s winning song “Music Unites the World” at the LA Sparks Halftime Show at Staples Center on June 18, 2019 with musical guest, Ricardo Hurtado (School of Rock, Nickelodeon).


Education Through Music-LA (ETM-LA) is excited to announce the WINNER of the 2021 Music Unites the World Songwriting Contest:
“The Lamps Are Different” by William Malpede!


The purpose of this contest is to produce an inspiring, high-quality, original song that speaks to the theme of music’s ability to unite the world.  The winning piece will be premiered virtually by students, alumni, and faculty at the annual Music Unites the World Festival, an event bringing together student performers from many of our approximately 45 partner schools in Los Angeles County.  For more info on ETM-LA’s mission, visit

PRIZE: The winning piece will be premiered virtually at the Music Unites the World Festival in March 2021 (date TBD) in Los Angeles, CA.  The winning piece will be sung by approximately 40-50 treble & alto singers (grades 4-6), joined by alumni and faculty, accompanied on piano.

The winner will be invited to attend the premiere where the winning composer will receive a $1,000 cash prize.  In addition, the composer will meet and work with the choir and director.  Music industry professionals, educators, celebrity film composers, and other leaders will be in attendance.  Past festival celebrity coaches include Academy Award and GRAMMY Award-Winning Producer Randy Spendlove; Emmy-Award Winning Producer Rickey Minor, Composers Blake Neely (Flash, Arrow), Christophe Beck (Frozen), Joseph Trapanese (Straight Outta Compton), Joseph Kraemer (Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation), Harry Gregson-Williams (The Meg, Shrek), Producer Sebastian Krys (Shakira, Luis Fonsi, Juanes), Singer-Songwriter Judith Hill (The Voice, Prince), NOMAD (Babyface), Consultant CeCe Sammy (American Idol), and Solo Vocalist Lisbeth Scott (Shrek, Chronicles of Narnia).

  • Application materials are accepted via the online application only found at
  • Songwriters/composers are asked to submit a score (full score and vocal-only score) and recording of an unpublished work for young treble voices (SA) on the theme of music uniting the world.
  • FEE: $10 (USD) submission fee.  All fees are payable online and are non-refundable.
  • November 1: Applications due. Pre-screening begins.
  • November 7: Finalists reviewed by judges who will select the winner.
  • December 2: Winner announced. 
  • December 15: Winner consults with ETM-LA on song and delivers final manuscript to ETM-LA.
  • March 2019: Winning song will be premiered virtually by ETM-LA Choir at the 2021 Music Unites the World Festival (date TBD) in March 2021.

Songwriting Contest Guidelines

ETM-LA reserves the right to not select a winner.

ENTRY DEADLINE: 11/1/2020 11:59 PM PT