BMI Foundation Announces Opening Of 2019 Scholarship Season

The BMI Foundation is now accepting online applications for its 2019 scholarship season, open to students attending colleges and universities nationwide. Among the scholarships is the Nashville Songwriting Scholarship, which will award $5,000 for the best original song and will be judged by Kacey Musgraves

The Foundation will administer five songwriting and composing scholarship competitions, judged by a panel of international musicians. These annual programs include the BMI Future Jazz Master Scholarship, BMI Student Composer Awards, John Lennon Scholarships, peermusic Latin Scholarship and the Nashville Songwriting Scholarship. In addition, the Foundation administers two scholarship competitions outside the area of music creation: the newly revamped BMI Founders Internship Program for broadcasting students, and the Woody Guthrie Fellowship for scholars pursuing topics or themes related to American folk music.

“We love getting to open new creative doors for talented songwriters, composers and scholars across the country,” said BMI Foundation President Deirdre Chadwick. “So many of our award recipients have gone on to have flourishing careers, in part because of programs like these that afford them continued educational and development opportunities.”

Applications must be completed online no later than Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, and complete details can be found at  bmifoundation.org/programs.

Nashville Songwriting Scholarship
The fourth annual Nashville Songwriting Scholarship will award $5,000 for the best original song in any of the following genres: Americana, blues, bluegrass, contemporary Christian, country, folk, and roots. The contest is open to students between the ages of 17 and 24, who are enrolled in any college or university located in the United States. Grammy-winning recording artist and BMI songwriter Kacey Musgraves endorses the competition and serves as a final judge.

BMI Founders Internship Program for Radio Broadcasting
Established in 2015, the BMI Founders Award is an annual internship program open to radio broadcasting students nationwide. The award commemorates the group of radio industry leaders who founded Broadcast Music, Inc. in 1939. A 4-6 week paid internship with a major broadcaster is awarded based on merit and the best original essay response submitted to the competition, and recognizes a student with the potential to become an innovator in the rapidly changing field of broadcast radio.

BMI Future Jazz Master Scholarship
The fifth annual BMI Future Jazz Master Scholarship will award $5,000 to a rising jazz star pursuing a graduate degree in Jazz Studies, Jazz Performance, or related majors. The award was established in 2015 in honor of the NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship, a lifetime achievement recognition program of the National Endowment for the Arts. 

BMI Student Composer Awards
The 67th annual BMI Student Composer Awards will award $20,000 in prizes to young composers engaged in the study of classical music. Co-sponsored by BMI and the BMI Foundation, the competition is open to all composers studying classical music who are age 27 or younger and citizens of the Western Hemisphere. Classical music luminaries such as John Adams, Aaron Jay Kernis and Augusta Read Thomas received their earliest recognition through this program. *Please note that the application deadline for this program is Friday, February 1st, 2019.

John Lennon Scholarships
The 22nd annual John Lennon Scholarships will award three prizes totaling $20,000 to U.S. college-student songwriters (age 17 to 24) for the best original songs submitted to the competition. Established in 1997 by Yoko Ono in conjunction with the BMI Foundation, this scholarship program honors the memory of one of the preeminent songwriters of the 20th century, John Lennon, and has become one of the nation’s most esteemed accolades for emerging artists. 

peermusic Latin Scholarship
Established by music publisher Ralph Peer II and generously funded by peermusic, the 16th  annual peermusic Latin Scholarship competition will award a $5,000 scholarship for the best original song or instrumental composition in any Latin genre. The contest is open to students between the ages of 17 and 24, who are enrolled in any college or university located in the United States and Puerto Rico. Acclaimed Latin artist and BMI songwriter Gloria Trevi serves as honorary spokesperson for the competition.

Woody Guthrie Fellowship
The 14th annual Woody Guthrie Fellowship will award up to $5,000 for scholarly research at the extensive Woody Guthrie Archives, a paper-based research repository located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Applicants must have a research project that leads to the creation of an original scholarly publication or product and requires a minimum of two weeks of research at the Archives. Established in 2005 in cooperation with the Woody Guthrie Center, the Woody Guthrie Fellowship seeks to encourage unique exploration into the life and legacy of one of the most influential folk musicians in American history, Woody Guthrie. 

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Hollabaugh, a staff writer at MusicRow magazine, has written for publications including American Profile, CMA Close Up, Nashville Arts And Entertainment, The Boot and Country Weekly. She has a Broadcast Journalism and Speech Communication degree from Texas Christian University, (go Horned Frogs), and welcomes your feedback or story ideas at [email protected]

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