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For Musicians


Song Writing Competition


CT Folk invites singer-songwriters to enter at least two of their compositions in the Grassy Hill Song Competition.

Five finalists will perform two of their submitted songs at the Connecticut Folk Festival & Green Expo on September 12th in New Haven before a panel of judges. The winner will receive $150 and will be awarded a slot in the Festival lineup. Judges are music industry professionals and DJs.

The Connecticut Folk Festival & Green Expo is a free outdoor event in New Haven’s Edgerton Park with a main stage, a contra dance, activities for children, and at least 75 “Green Living” exhibitors, educators, and vendors. Musicians perform, rain or shine, from 11 AM through 10 PM.

Fees: $25 for the first two songs (minimum requirement) and $20 per each additional song (optional). Competitors may enter an unlimited number of songs. Competitors must use the Wufoo website to enter.

Additional Information

  • Solo or duo singer-songwriters may enter the competition.

  • Songwriters retain all rights to the songs that they have submitted to the competition.

  • Each entered song should not exceed 4 minutes in duration, including introduction.

  • Songs will be judged on quality of songwriting. Professional recordings are not required.

  • CT Folk board members, staff, and members of their families are not eligible for the competition.

  • The deadline for entering the competition is March 31, 2020. Finalists will be notified by April 30th.

Finalists Information

  • Finalists must perform (only) two of their submitted songs on Saturday, September 7, 2019, at the event in New Haven, Connecticut, and are responsible for their own travel and lodging.

  • Professional sound and sound engineer will be provided. No backline will be provided.

  • Solo performers may bring one backup musician for the competition performance.

  • Performers must provide the judges with a hard copy of lyrics on the day of the festival.

Song Writing Competition




Two performance slots for the 2020 CT Folk Festival & Green Expo are for musicians selected through our audition process. 

Applicants must be able to perform in New Haven on April 3rd, 2020 and, if selected for the festival lineup, on September 12th, 2020 at the CT Folk Fest.*

Interested folk musicians (solo-artists or groups) from New England, as well as from New York and New Jersey, may apply for free by submitting a video of one song to

Videos must be submitted no later than February 21st, 2020 at 11:59 pm.  

*The CT Folk Festival & Green Expo is one-day event, featuring great music throughout the day and evening, the largest Green Expo in CT including handmade artisans, Kids Zone, beer & wine garden, food trucks + more.

Festival Auditions

The Selection Process

A committee will review the submissions (typically more than 75), and invite 8 of the applicants to perform for 10-12 minutes before an audience on Auditions Night. The audience, using CT Folk’s feedback sheet, will write comments and rank the artists in order of preference. CT Folk’s Board of Directors, taking the audience feedback into consideration, will select the musicians invited to perform at the 2020 Connecticut Folk Festival & Green Expo.  Auditions night performers will receive a $50 honorarium (total per group).

Musicians selected to perform at the April 3rd 2020 CT Folk Auditions Night will be notified of their status no later than March 16th, 2020.


Click on the links below to learn more about some amazing organizations and opportunities for CT Folk Musicians!

Written by Julia Cameron, a terrific guide to connecting with your own creativity. Recommended with the accompanying “Morning Pages Journal.”

Connecticut Office of the Arts & Culture

(Department of Economic & Community Development)

Artist Fellowships, Performing & Teaching Artist Directory, CT State Troubadour, and more.

By acclaimed pianist and 2010 Guggenheim Fellow Kenny Werner, a book and accompanying meditations (CD) for reaching to the next level in one’s musical development.

Networking, showcasing, and professional development services and support for the folk music community.

Bob Lefsetz’ music industry blog (previous keynote speaker at Folk Alliance International annual conference).

Working to cultivate and promote the arts in New England and beyond, connecting collaborators and communities, fueling creative exchange and public discourse, and strengthening the creative economy. Matchbook web resource for member artist profiles.

Networking, showcasing, and professional development services and support for the folk music community.

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