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Bernard Ebb Songwriting Competition

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Thank you for choosing to apply to the Bernard Ebb Songwriting Competition!

About the Competition and Awards
The Bernard/Ebb Songwriting Awards are presented annually, honoring the best adult and youth songwriters in the Maryland, Virginia and District of Columbia, through a multi-level adjudication process, culminating in a live performance showcasing the featured songs and announcing the winners.

The contest will award one songwriter a Grand Prize of $10,000 and 25 hours of recording studio time and two hours of music business strategy consulting.  A songwriter who is 17 or younger will also be honored with an award of $2,500.

Read more about the competition, its founders and history here:

Deadline for Application
Thursday, November 30, 2023

Performance Date and Award Announcement
Friday, April 12, 2024
Finalists will be notified of their requested participation no later than February 28, 2024

Application Fee
All applicants $30 (submitted via Acceptd) 

  • Adult Applicants (18 years of age or older): Applicants must submit three (3) original songs
  • Youth Applicants (17 years of age or younger ) Applicants must submit one (1) original song
All songs must have lyrics.  Therefore, instrumental compositions are not accepted.  All genres are accepted.  Maximum song length is five minutes.  If a song is longer than five minutes, please submit a five-minute except.

  • Adult Applicants: Songwriters are 18 years of age or older and are permanent, full-time residents of Maryland, Virginia or Washington DC.
  • Youth Applicants: Songwriters are 17-years-old and younger are eligible to enter under the "Young Songwriter" category.  Young Songwriter entrants must be born on or after December 2, 2005. Please use "Young Songwriter" application.
Applicants must be available to perform their original song(s) for a live audience at Strathmore in North Bethesda, MD on Friday, April, 2024

Please review all application instructions and eligibility information here:

For questions about the competition and application requirements, please email

For technical questions please visit the Acceptd Help Desk.