The Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge, presented by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in partnership with the National Alliance for Musical Theatre (NAMT), is an opportunity for high school students all across the country to develop and showcase musical compositions that could be part of a musical theater production. Submissions will be judged by a panel of leaders in the musical theater field — including NAMT members and festival of New Musicals Alumni Writers, among others — who will select the Challenge’s winning writers/writing teams. Those writers will be invited to New York City in June 2024 to work with mentors, culminating in a concert of their songs.

Challenge Accepted! A Concert Presenting the Winners of the Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students

Concert program

Meet the Winners: How They Did It

Introducing the Winners of the 2024 Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students!

Watch the video here:

LEarn More:

Visit the NEA’s website to learn more about the program and hear submissions from previous finalists!

Eligibility & Guidelines

Songwriting Challenge Where You Live

Submit to the Songwriting Challenge for High School Students

Songwriting Challenge Kit

Songwriting 101: Words & Lyrics

Watch the video here:

Songwriting 201: The Music

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Stay Informed:

Sign up here to receive email updates about the Songwriting Challenge (and other NAMT news, too!)

All Challenge Events


Are you a participant in the Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students? Even if not, are you a songwriter working on something new? Unlock the secret to elevating your songwriting skills! Click now to access exclusive tools and guidance at the Writing is Rewriting Resource Center, and transform your musical theater dreams into reality.

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This page was last updated on 06/18/2024