WALT DISNEY WORLD NIGHT OF JOY PERFORMANCE AND WORD-DISTRIBUTED CENTRICITY RECORDS DEVELOPMENT DEAL ARE JUST SOME OF PRIZES THAT AWAIT GMA’S IMMERSE TALENT COMPETITION PARTICIPANTS
Compassion International and American Bible Society Also Offer Awards at IMMERSE; Entry Deadline Coming Up June 30
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – June 10, 2009 – American Idol winner Kris Allen is not the only new artist going to Disney World. Later this summer, Walt Disney World will award a Disney Best of Show winner at the Gospel Music Association’s IMMERSE, the Christian music industry’s premier training experience and talent competition, sending the winner to Orlando to perform at the park’s annual “Night of Joy” concert in September.
Another aspiring artist will score a development deal with rising independent and Word-distributed label Centricity Records; a missions-minded artist will find themselves on a mission trip with Compassion International and a songwriter who best captures the Scripture in music will be honored by the American Bible Society.
These are the highlights of the prizes to be handed out at IMMERSE as a part of the talent competition held in Nashville July 29 to August 2. The first step to winning the valuable prizes is registering for the artist and songwriting competitions by the June 30 deadline. All the detailed information IMMERSE is available at www.experienceimmerse.com.
Christian artists, songwriters, worship leaders, music business professionals– and those that want to be someday – will gather at IMMERSE, a four-day event during which registrants will train with the industry’s most influential professionals, leading artists and songwriters, connect with top music insiders and others who share a passion for God and music; compete in Christian music’s official talent competition and enjoy exclusive music opportunities that only Nashville can offer, including the valuable prize packages.
The sponsor prizes are exclusive to GMA’s IMMERSE and give winners unique opportunities to move their careers forward in the areas of performing, recording and serving. The key prizes are:
- Walt Disney World Best in Show. One artist finalist will be selected to receive a performance slot at the "Night of Joy” event at the Walt Disney World® Resort, September 11-12, 2009 in Florida, performing on the same stage as Jars of Clay, Chris Tomlin, P.O.D., Superchick, Newsboys, Kutless, Leeland and Flyleaf. The prize includes a vacation package for the winning artist, including accommodations at a select Walt Disney World® Resort hotel, airfare, Disney theme park tickets and Night of Joy tickets.
- Centricity Music Development Deal. A winner will be chosen to receive a development deal with the Word-distributed. Centricity Music is anindependent, family owned, full-service music company with offices in Seattle and Nashville and whose artist roster includes former GMA competition winner Circleside. The agreement will include music and career advice and council, song consultation, demo recordings, and potential expansion into an exclusive recording or publishing contract.
- American Bible Society (ABS) Scripture Song Awards. Three overall SONGS chosen from the amateur, semi-pro, and professional non-artist classes will receive a personalized Bible from ABS, and one Steuben Crystal Award.
- Compassion International Missions Experience. One competing artist will be chosen to receive an all-expense paid ministry trip to a Compassion International destination. This trip provides a great opportunity to explore the practical integration of music and ministry. This winner will be chosen by Compassion representatives through advance interviews with competitors that already have a heart for ministry.
The talent competitions are one of the highlights of IMMERSE. The IMMERSE Artist of 2009 National Competition is the Christian music industry’s official talent competition for unsigned acts. At the National Competition which is inclusive of all musical styles and genres of Christian music, IMMERSE contestants will be judged by Nashville music executives and popular Christian music artists as they compete for the grand prize titles for Solo 2009, Group 2009 and Band 2009.
The IMMERSE Song of 2009 National Competition awards grand prize titles, including Song of 2009, and the ABS Scripture Song of 2009. Songs of all musical styles and genres with Christian lyrical content are accepted in the competition and are judged based upon the excellence of songwriting skills within the musical style. The overall song categories are divided by class based upon level of songwriting experience and are given for Amateur, Semi-Pro and Professional Non-Artist classes. The deadline to compete in either the Song or Artist competitions is June 30.
In addition to competitions and prizes, at the heart of IMMERSE are the unparalleled opportunities to attend seminars taught by artists and other industry professionals, which cover everything from getting signed by a label to performance techniques to tools for songwriting. Aspiring songwriters and artists can also have their song or demo tapes professionally critiqued. Topics will cover marketing, promotion, radio, A&R, management, publishing, PR, legal and more. The classes will also focus on the roles of an artist/songwriter's team for those who are interested in management, booking, promotion and more. In addition to the classes and competitions, IMMERSE takes full advantage of its location in Music City with many opportunities to hear music and hear from the artists creating it, along with a field trip through Music Row.
Artists including Michael W. Smith, Natalie Grant, Pillar, Aaron Shust, Chris Sligh, Melinda Doolittle, Phil Stacey, Martha Munizzi and Travis Cottrell will all perform and/or teach at IMMERSE. Professionals such as Mitchell Solarek (manager/Natalie Grant); Laurie Anderson (manager/TobyMac); Brad O’Donnell (A&R, EMI CMG); Chris Blaney (booking agent, Third Coast Artists Agency); Leigh Holt (VP of Branding & Merchandising, Word Records) and author David Nasser are confirmed to participate in GMA’s IMMERSE. More artists and professionals will continue to be confirmed in the coming weeks.
Founded in 1964, the Gospel Music Association serves as the face and voice for the gospel/Christian music community and is dedicated to exposing, promoting and celebrating the gospel through music of all styles including pop, rock, praise & worship, black gospel, R&B, hip hop, southern gospel, country, and more. The GMA community consists of more than 3,000 members including agents, artists, church leaders, managers, promoters, radio personnel, record company executives, retailers, songwriters and other industry visionaries. The GMA produces the GMA Dove Awards, GMA Music Week and the GMA Academy. For more information, please visit www.gospelmusic.org.