September 26, 2006
The contest is called First Amendment Writes, spelled w-r-i-t-e-s because it's about writing whatever you want. There are two different styles you can use.
The first half is a poetry competition where finalists will write their poems on the freedom of expression wall. The second is songwriting and the songs must be performed, either on a video, CD, tape or MP3 recording. In fact the finalists will get to perform both the songs and poetry readings at Starr Hill Music Hall.
The contest is sponsored by the The Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression, the Music Resource Center, and Starr Hill Presents.
You must be at least 16 to enter and the grand prize is $500 for each winner.
"This competition is a celebration of the creative heights people can achieve when they are free to express themselves on any subject. And what better way to remind people of the benefits of free speech than through encouraging artistic excellence," said Josh Wheeler of the The Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression.
The contest has celebrity judges: Rita Dove, former poet laureate, Boyd Tinsley, violinist and member of the Dave Matthews Band, and Bruce Flohr of Red Light Management and ATO Records.