The Boston Public Library is looking for Massachusetts’ next 13- to 18-year-old musical sensations.
For BPL’s new Teen Music Maker Showdown, teens from all over the state are invited to submit original tracks from Feb. 5-25. A panel of judges, including members of Cambridge’s The Hip Hop Transformation, ICA Teens, the Clubhouse Network, and the library, will select three winners to receive a cash prize of up to $150 and an opportunity to get paid to produce a new track for BPL’s YouTube and Twitch channels.
“We’re looking for rock, pop, R&B, soul — anything kids are using to express themselves,” said Opetoritse Adefolalu, a librarian at BPL’s Lower Mills Branch and one of the organizers of the event.
For Adefolalu, one of the best aspects of the competition is the winners’ opportunity to produce a new track for the BPL. It’s important for young artists to “get a taste of real professional jobs,” he said. ”We really want to have that career practice and career readiness incorporated into everything we’re doing with teens.” “Winners that choose to do the commissioned work can make $100 in addition to their prize money.”
During the submission period, teens can also attend workshops help by industry professionals and connect with their fellow competitors.
At the awards ceremony on March 5, clips from the winners and some honorable mentions will be featured on the library’s Twitch and YouTube page. “We would love the teens to see that the library is a space for them and by them,” said Adefolalu. “We want them to see that they are co-creators.”
Natachi Onwuamaegbu can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.