S4C's songwriting competition Cân i Gymru 2016 has been officially opened today, Wednesday 5 August 2015, in a launch event at the National Eisteddfod, Montgomeryshire and the Marches.
S4C is inviting songwriters to enter their songs for the chance to win £5,000. The closing date for entries is 20 November, 2015. More details on how to enter are available on the Cân i Gymru 2016 website
The competition will be held at the beginning of March 2016, with Elin Fflur and Trystan Elis-Morris presenting.
Elin Fflur unveiled the new-look competition for 2016, during the launch at S4C's pavilion in the National Eisteddfod, along with a performance by Elin Angharad, singer of the 2015 winning song, 'Y Lleuad a'r Sêr'.
As well as an increased first prize of £5,000 for the winner, the other main change for the 2016 competition is that the task of choosing the winner will rest solely in the hands of the viewers, through a telephone vote.
In previous years, the winning song has been chosen by combining the viewers' phone vote with a score given by a panel of judges. In 2016, the winner will be decided solely by the viewers' vote, but a panel of experts will be able to voice their opinion with a separate award – Tlws y Beirniaid (The Judges' Trophy).
Elen Rhys, S4C Entertainment Content Commissioners, explains about this year's changes; "For 2016, we wanted to make changes, and listened to the viewers' feedback. So, for the first time in many years, the viewers alone will choose the 2016 winner. This was important for us, but, we also wanted to hear the opinion of experts from the music industry, and that's why we've introduced an extra judges' trophy prize – Tlws y Beirniaid - for 2016.
"As well as a main prize of £5,000, taking part is an opportunity in itself for musicians and songwriters to record their song – an opportunity which isn't readily available for everyone. This year, eight songs will compete in the final; resulting in eight new songs, in the Welsh language, to be recorded professionally and released for download and to be played on radio for years to come."
Following the closing date, on 20 November, eight songs will be chosen to compete in the Cân i Gymru 2016 final. Four experienced mentors in the industry will work with the songwriters and performers, taking two songs each, to perfect the songs ready for the competition which will be held in Cardiff in March.
If you want to compete for Cân i Gymru 2016, full terms and conditions and details on how to enter your song, are available on the Cân i Gymru 2016 website