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‘Offer hope and encouragement’: RISE UP and write Calgary’s song

Local musicians have an opportunity to be the soundtrack of Calgary’s art sector renaissance.

And your voice could be the sound that everyone hears.

In partnership with CKUA, Alberta Music and the National Music Centre, and sponsored by Calgary Arts Development, RISE UP is searching for a fully produced, original song to be used for their ongoing initiatives.

It’s been a difficult time for the music industry said President and CEO of Calgary Arts Development Patti Pon. COVID-19 and the economy have taken a real bite out of everything from sales to performances.

“We are especially happy to see the top prize of $5,000 going to support a local artist,” she said.


Led by a group of arts champions in Calgary, RISE UP is an open-source platform that unites arts, hospitality and tourism partners to develop an ideas to help boost the local arts scene.  

As the platform continues to grow, it needs a theme song that embodies the resilience and spirit of Calgary.

“RISE UP is centred around local arts sector recovery,” said Pon.

“It is in this spirit that we are on the search for a song written and performed by a Calgary-based artist to represent and promote this on-going platform and be a way to remember this time when we all came together to offer hope and encouragement.”

The platform offers new, exciting, safety-conscious live experiences that will directly benefit local artists and businesses in need. Public health and safety will be a top priority.

It is behind events including the RISE UP Weekend (the 2020 drive-in style summer festival do-over), Hotels Live hotel music performances, and relaunch lunches for industry professionals to meet and collaborate on new, creative solutions.

Support through the highs and lows

The competition is open to Calgary-based artists or groups for submission until January 15, 2021.

“Our community of songwriters matters so much to us and we want to do our part to support them, how and whenever we can,” said CKUA CEO Marc Carnes.

“We love Albertan artists; we love to support them and their work–in good times and bad.”

The winner of the competition will receive a $5,000 payment for the licensing of their song for the period of one-year. They’ll also get free production time at Studio Bell at the National Music Centre. Plus, there will be paid performance opportunities at future RISE UP events.

Finalists will also have a paid opportunity to perform in a RISE UP song competition showcase. All rights and ownership of the song and performance will remain with the artist.