And the Finalists for our 2014 Songwriting Contest are . . .

Hear ye!  Hear ye!

It’s time to announce the 10 finalists for our first ever Davenport Songwriting Contest!

We’ve already had such a blast getting to this stage of the competition.  Because, let’s face it, everyone in my office loves a show tune.  So we’ve been in heaven since the hundreds of submissions started coming in.  It was tough to narrow it down to just 10 . . . which made me so optimistic for the future of the theater.  Cuz let me tell you . . . there are some good songwriters out there.  And they are coming up fast.

Ok, enough with that . . . you want to see who made it, right?  Here’s the list of the 10 Finalists, in absolutely no particular order!

1.  “Our Little Swedish Home” – Music by Zak Sandler, Lyrics by Greg Edwards

2.  “Horizontal Light” – Music & Lyrics by Andrew J. Hanley

3.  “We’re the Only Real Actors in This Show” – Music & Lyrics by Ted Kopulos

4.  “I Could Be a Hero” – Music & Lyrics by Madeline Myers

5.  “Cracked and Broken” – Music by Dave Ogrin, Lyrics by Dave Ogrin & R.C. Staab

6.  “Just Between Us” – Music & Lyrics by David Reiffel & Michael Wartofsky

7.  “Hero” – Music & Lyrics by Joseph Shrand

8.  “Running” – Music by Tidtaya Sinutoke, Lyrics by T. Defoe

9.  “Could It Be Me” – Music by Kevin Cotter, Lyrics by Diane Uniman

10.  “Scared of Falling” – Music & Lyrics by Kevin J. Watson II

Congratulations to all of the finalists!

And now comes the real fun part.  On Thursday, January 30th, at 7 PM, at the theater at 354 West 45th St., those 10 finalists will each present their songs to some wicked cool judges and you, the audience.  And yep, each one of you will get to cast your vote for your favorite song.  And the winner will walk home with $500!

Who are those judges?  Check it out!  We’ve got Actress Natalie Weiss (Wicked, Les Miz, Everyday Rapture), Actor Ryan Silverman (Chicago, Phantom) and a super popular songwriter himself, Ryan Scott Oliver.

Oh, and me.

Get your tickets to the event by clicking here.

And a hearty congrats to all those who entered.  There are a lot of songwriters in this city.  Or a lot of people who think they are songwriters, but they never get around to writing.  You may not have a chance to win this competition, but you won already . . . because you wrote a tune in the first place.  You’ll never achieve your dreams just talking about what you want to do.  You have to do.


(Got a comment? I love ‘em, so comment below! Email Subscribers, click here then scroll down to say what’s on your mind!)

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  • Nick says:

    I wish I’d known that the guidelines for the contest had been changed and that songs that were not written exclusively for this competition were eligible. Quite a few of these songs have been recorded/performed before. I’m sure there are plenty of writers with new yet previously written material who’d have loved to throw their hats in the ring if they knew they were eligible. Hope you have another contest soon!

  • Kari says:

    I would like to echo Nick’s comment. I helped two friends prepare their materials for this contest (both having written really clever, catchy, totally original material for this singular purpose), and am so sad to see neither of them represented on the above list. Yet, songs that have had previous public performances are there. Ah well. So it goes. Still appreciative that you are orchestrating the contest.

  • Dan says:

    Yeah, and that’s not Ken’s fault. He was clear about the guidelines. It was the honor system.

  • Randi says:

    Will you be recording the event, so those of us who can’t attend can hear these amazing songs? I hope so! I’m eager to hear them.

  • Karen Rusch says:

    Ken — This is such a great idea! I’m not in the city that week — is it possible you can also do a live stream for us out-of-towners?

  • diane uniman says:

    Woooohoootyhoo! 🙂

  • Margie Goldsmith says:



    (I would increase the font size to a HUGE 72 point font but this comment box won’t let me.

    Your grandfather would be SO PROUD!

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  • David Kurkowski says:

    I too am puzzled that the guidelines were changed. I found out about the competition second hand and had only 17 days to write and produce a song. I adhered to the rule that it had to be a new song “not even thought of before.” So I wrote a new song and had a finished recording done in exactly 14 days. Then I learn that the deadline is extended a week. Now when I look at the list of finalists, I learn that the first song is over a year old, and had the benefit of a workshop. I thought honor code would mean something or that the contest director would at least do a google search. I found the winning song in about ten seconds.
    Still I’m grateful for anything that stimulates a new song. So thanks for that. My advice for the future: stick to whatever rules you initially set up.

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