From Sid Ambrose
A thousand pound prize is up for offer as part of a government initiative to challenge views on sectarianism. The dumb ways to think competition has been inspired by an Australian viral campaign called dumb ways to die. Sid Ambrose from the Kirkcudbright based South West Scotland Sectarian Project explained “Dumb ways to die has had over 70 million views on YouTube, it is a humorous animated song which ultimately conveys a message to young people about the dangers of playing near trains and train tracks. It has been so successful that our organisation wanted to emulate the idea and challenge deeply entrenched sectarian views through an animated song based on discredited beliefs, including ideas such as it’s ok to be a ninety minute bigot.”
To take the project forward the South West Scotland Sectarian project which is run by Stewartry Council of Voluntary Service, teamed up with Burnsong and the University Of West Of Scotland animation department.
Robert Maitland from the organisation Burnsong commented “Scotland’s song writing promotion and development body Burnsong are proud to host the song writing competition ‘Dumb ways to think’. Burnsong, with the support of the Voluntary Action Fund, Scottish Government, SmartIndie and EM Records are calling on songwriters to write an original song to highlight and discredit sectarian beliefs.”
Sid Ambrose is no stranger to organising song writing competitions, he has long been associated with a number of music festivals including Eden and the Wickerman who have promoted competitions to discover new talent. Sid remarked "in this instance the competition will play it’s part in highlighting widely held negative attitudes based on inter Christian religious differences, it will also give a substantial cash prize to a songwriter and the opportunity to see their song become animated to a professional standard.”
The animation element of the song writing prize has made this a fairly unique competition. Evelyn Fitzpatrick from the University of the West of Scotland’s Paisley campus commented “ We are delighted that one of the University’s Computer Animation graduates, Jamie Ferns, is enhancing his practical experience through the animation work on this project. It tackles a hugely important issue in Scottish society and we welcome the opportunity for one of our recent graduates to contribute to this initiative.”
To enter this competition you can be any age or nationality, however you need to submit original material which you own the rights to. A list of discredited beliefs including sectarian beliefs will be supplied to you by the competition organisers, and it is expected that these will form the basis of the song submission; closing date is the 4th of October with the winner being announced on the 3oth November. To find out more about the competition please visit the Burnsong website here