Azusa Pacific University’s School of Music will host the 2022 Songwriting Academy, a part of the Angeles Worship Initiative (AWI), from August 20-21 on campus for musicians to explore songwriting in a creative, collaborative, and theological approach. Songwriting Academy includes a variety of opportunities for students to express their creativity in worship. Throughout this dynamic event, participants will have the opportunity to learn from experts and songwriting coaches, emerging with their own artistic tools for writing more memorable and impactful songs. They will participate in guided collaborative writing sessions and share their unique artistic skills in a live showcase.

"Music and the arts provide wonderful pathways for connection with God,” said Stephen Martin, D.C.M., director of Worship Studies and the Angeles Worship Initiative. “We have witnessed true transformation on the part of those who participate in these events. Adults and youth alike have worshiped, created, and grown together during their time in Worship Arts Lab and the Songwriting Academy."

The Songwriting Academy will feature prominent artist and songwriter Leon Timbo as the keynote speaker. Throughout a more than 20 year music career, Timbo is known for a unique sound and writing style that incorporates equal measures of vintage soul, gospel, folk, R&B, and even modern blues making for an unforgettable experience that some have described as “transparent soul.” He is a highly sought-after worship leader with an open heart and a humble spirit. His transparent approach to worship has led to him being the guest worship leader at many churches, most recently the Potter’s House of Dallas. Because of his heart for worship, Timbo has served Fellowship Church as an artist in residence for the past five years.

The two-day academy will provide guided sessions on collaborative songwriting, mentorships to help participants develop their own theological insights and spiritual formation practices as worship songwriters.

Former participants in the Songwriting Academy have expressed their takeaways from the experience: “I take with me new ways to collaborate with others and describe and face the problems the church faces in new and progressive ways,” said one participant. Another commented, “I was reminded that everything matters, we are shaped and formed by liturgy all around us. The ways we live and prepare ourselves for worship, and specifically worship leadership, matters.”


Register online for the Songwriting Academy 2022. The cost is $75. Registration closes on August 5.

APU’s Angeles Worship Initiative aims to equip the younger generation by collaborating with churches to create opportunities for innovative, intergenerational ministry through worship and the arts. Through educational events and mentoring experiences, youth gain guidance and inspiration to lead with confidence. These events include the Worship Arts Lab, Angeles Worship Summit, and Songwriting Academy.