Siena Select 2017


This year, The Siena School debuted its first-ever songwriting competition which called for submissions of original songs from students in grades 4-12. Three talented musicians served as judges for the competition, and prizes were awarded for the best original song across each division as well as to one overall winner.
Please see below for winners and runners-up. Make sure to visit the judges' page for more information on the amazing musicians who served on our judges' panel as well as the submissions page to hear all of this year's original songs!
High School

Overall Winner and High School First Place: Meribor, "When I Was a Little Girl"
Note: This recording is quiet -- you may need to raise your volume

Judges' Comments: “The repeated line, ‘when I was a little girl’ is very catchy. The structure really works--two verses and choruses, then a very cool bridge with nice phrasing and repetition, then a good homestretch. The chorus is also very catchy, and I love the harmony. And I loved how at the end of the song the guitar playing gets more sparse and you end with the line ‘When I was a little girl.’

High School Runner-Up: Jordan, "Life"

Judges' Comments: “Cool tones, cool beat, everything in sync! The different sections make sense together and build off each other nicely. And the ‘Mary Had a Little Lamb’ break is very clever.”

Middle School

Middle School First Place: Emily, "Everyone Is Happy"

Judges' Comments: “This song somewhat reminds me of Angel Olsen; your singing has a really interesting, very relaxed quality to it. I like the positive message of the song; it’s very consistent throughout the song. And great job coming up with an interesting chord progression.”

“I really like the melody and the space after the chorus!”

Middle School Runner-Up: Anjani, "The Runner"

Judges' Comments: “This is a beautiful piece of music. I could hear it being used in a soundtrack to a movie; it reminds me of a person running. You did a great job of coming up with melodic themes that repeat and build on themselves in an interesting way, building up to loud parts and coming back down to the quiet and intimate. Great job!”

Elementary School
Elementary First Place: Tara and Fabi, "Keep on Trying"

Judges' Comments: “I admire the pop instincts of this songwriting duo. The opening lines are unforgettable, your two voices balanced perfectly against the ukulele accompaniment. The song has a lot of nice things to say about someone - maybe some ones - but the final section (“you tell me what to do but I can’t do it”) introduces a judicious dose of conflict to the mix. This in turn becomes a story about trying ‘until I get it right,’ an open-ended and relatable theme for any listener. I hope you do keep trying!”

Elementary Runner-Up: Tom, "Snowflake Song"

Judges' Comments: “I like the idea of doing a vocal part, an instrumental part, and then another vocal part. Creative and unique.” 

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