Renowned Songwriters Help Teen Girls Write Lyrics

In anticipation of the GRAMMY Awards, non-profit organizations come together to create beautiful music for inner city teens at Walt Disney Concert Hall.

Imagine being in high school and hearing your lyrics performed at Walt Disney Concert Hall? Nearly 100 teen girls experienced just that at WriteGirl’s 12th Annual Songwriting Workshop held Saturday, February 9th. In partnership with the Music Center Education Program, Vice President Mark Slavkin extended a generous welcome to Los Angeles teens and their WriteGirl mentors to gather in BP Hall at Walt Disney Concert Hall to work with some of the industry’s top songwriters.

Michelle Lewis, a singer/songwriter whose work has been performed by Cher, Jessica Simpson, Shawn Colvin and many more, helped lead the girls in understanding different musical genres, parts of songs, and invited many of her colleagues from the music industry to guide the girls through the lyric writing process.

Grand Park, in the heart of downtown LA's new urban center, created a wonderful opportunity for the girls to bond with their mentors in a beautiful and green outdoor setting as they ate lunch from Whole Foods.

Songwriting WorkshopIn the afternoon, girls began writing lyrics and then took turns working directly with one of the 20 guest singer/ songwriters during one-on-one consultaions. WriteGirl Lola, who wrote a song about freedom and independence, said that working with the songwriters was her favorite part of the day. "I felt more confident about songwriting after that," she said.

At the end of the day, the musicians began to gather on stage, guitars in one hand, the girls' lyrics in the other. The energy in the room was palpable as our teens, mentors and parents listened to words the girls had just written being set to music by the renowned performers at one of the most unique and improvised concert experiences they'd ever attended. "It was cool to hear songs that people wrote," said one mentee.

A huge thank you to our workshop sponsors whose generosity made this workshop possible: The Good News Foundation and WriteGirl supporter Wendy Burch, ASCAP and the ASCAP Foundation and The Music Center Education Program.