In the Songwriting in the Schools Program, middle and high school students engage in a rigorous creative process, writing their own songs from a character's point of view under the guidance of a professional lyricist and a composer. At the end of the 9-session residency, students share their work with their peers. All students receive a rehearsal recording of their songs.

Representative songs written during LCT's Songwriting in the Schools Program are usually performed in June by professional artists in a concert setting at Lincoln Center.

When NYC schools shut down due to the pandemic in mid-March, we were able to shift some of our instruction online. In April and May, AP English students at Millennium Art Academy in the Bronx worked with Ben Wexler and Britton Smith to write song lyrics about their lives during the pandemic. The teaching artists then set those lyrics to music. We hope you enjoy this window into our students' experience.

“The teaching artists invited us to write about something bad that ends up being good. We were inspired by our imaginations and how we imagined people struggling to reach their dreams.”

— Student, Tapco High School

LCT's Songwriting in the Schools Program is designed to enrich the writing curriculum with standards-based instruction that addresses the New York City Department of Education's Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Arts by teaching songwriting vocabulary, character development, collaborative techniques, and about musical genres.

This video captures the excitement of our 10th annual concert of student-written songs that took place in June 2017, the culminating event of the semester's work in the Songwriting in the Schools Program.