" /> Songwriting Competition 2021 - Hastings Thrives
2021 songwriting completion nature theme montage

2021 Songwriting Competition

WELCOME to our 6th annual songwriting competition, which is online again this year due to Covid-19.

We love this inspiring competition where everyone who participates is a winner – improving their core learning and skills, working towards a goal, building friendships along the way. Most importantly, all entrants receive certificates with personalised feedback.

The competition is open to all Hastings schools, collaborators and individuals.

Entry form here

Email us for details of free 1:2:1 support.

Entry Categories

Under 12s




The deadline has been extended to 25 June

Winners Announced 30 June

A Song for Nature

Widowed penguins comfort each other © Tobias Baumgaertner

The theme for this year is Nature.

  • nature as shared space with the environment and wildlife
  • nature as force
  • the nature of things

We encourage you to regularly spend 10 minutes in nature, listening and observing to provide inspiration for your song. Nature can be your back garden, the local park or wildlife area, seafront, a wood or a row of trees on a street etc. Make sure to take a suitable adult with you for safety.

Things to consider are:

colourstexturelinesmovement weather soundseffectslightemotionsthoughtsresponses

Courses & Support


We can offer a variety of support to suit your needs, particularly pulling a song together and producing a rehearsal tape.

Online After School Club

Tuesday April 20th for 6 weeks from 4.45pm – 6pm.

Online Home Ed Club

Tuesday April 20 for 12 weeks from 10.30am – 12pm.

Inclusive of all abilities (from absolute beginner to experienced) and all neurodiversity.

Collaborative, individual and 1:2:1 sessions included.


There is the opportunity for 10 people in the 12 – 15 age group to receive constructive feedback about their song before entering.

Contact us


Hairy Ghost Piperfish © John Magee

Winner Prize

Each category winner will have the opportunity to professionally record their song.

Runner Up Prize

The runner up in each category can choose from the following options:

£20 Voucher for Musics Not Dead record store at De La Warr Pavillion.

£20 Voucher for Wow and Flutter record and art store in Hastings

£20 Voucher for B&T Music shop in Hastings

Family ticket (1xadult/2xunder 16’s) to Kew Gardens


  • This competition is open to young people living in Hastings.
  • Where a school class submits a song, the school must be situated in Hastings, or have a significant number of pupils in the class from Hastings.
  • If entering as a band, over 50% of members must be from Hastings.
  • Collaboration buddies need to be in same age bracket entered.
  • Songs need to be written for the competition and not promoted elsewhere.
  • We cannot accept songs with explicit content (swearing, sex, drug promotion). If they are deemed unsuitable you will be given the opportunity to remove relevant sections.


Most songs are composed of

  • lyrics
  • vocals
  • melody
  • chord structure
  • instruments

The emphasis you give will create your style of song. For instance

  • Singer/songwriter – vocals and a single instrument often take centre stage
  • Acapella – purely vocals
  • Hip hop – vocals and beat are stronger
  • Jazz – the instruments are the focus
  • Rock’n’Roll – guitar and drums rule
  • Folk – the lyrics and story take precedent
  • Electronic music – the beat is best, with melody coming from chords or vocals

We encourage collaborative songwriting.

With nature as the theme this year, you may want to record and blend authentic sounds into your song!

Chechout this article about songwriter Max Martin


Thank you so much to all our sponsors.

The Foreshore Trust

Why Nature?

The aim of using the theme nature is to:

  • improve visual awareness, observation and listening skills through nature
  • engage fully in our environment and to draw on it for inspiration
  • increase a sense of connectedness and wellbeing
  • to increase complex thinking through a multi-faceted theme
  • to allow access to science through the arts
  • engage in local history through the life of Marianne North