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Inspiring a movement through music

Powered by Darkspark, the VERSIONS Youth Fellowship will support 30 emerging artists of colour from around the world. Throughout the one-year virtual program, Fellows will collaborate with artists, music producers, a network of thought leaders, organizations, and brands. They will create and release music and stories that inspire social change, build their leadership and creative skills, and transform their vision for a better world into direct community action.


VERSIONS identifies 30 young changemakers, ages 16-24, and accelerates their journey to success. Each Fellow will professionally write, record and release their own song over a celebrity-produced beat, and be featured in short films telling their personal and artist story, which will be shared far and wide.

Fellows will participate in an inaugural summit, and attend monthly skill-building events. Throughout the year, each Fellow will conceptualize a social impact project of their own design, and pursue a personalized plan with Darkspark support to implement their project in their home-community. The Fellowship includes:

  • Mentorship in:
    • songwriting and music production with established artists and industry professionals
    • leadership, entrepreneurism, social enterprise, and financial literacy
    • tools, frameworks, and skillsets for confronting racism and pursuing equity
    • self-development - access to mental and physical health tools and workshops with wellness experts
  • A Creation Kit, containing a Smartphone, Blue USB microphone, Zoom recorder, Shure Headphones, recording software and more!
  • Professional networking within the creative industry
  • One-on-one support to assist each Fellow in realizing their social justice vision for their community
  • A professionally produced song and content campaign, with distribution and amplification through partner channels


BIPOC* youth aged 16-24 who:

*Black, Indigenous, People of Colour

are passionate about expressing themselves through song, in any genre, at any level

are enthusiastic about social justice and have ideas for how they want to change the world

are able to effectively express themselves in English

have regular access to either a computer or smartphone and an internet connection

can commit to approximately 25 hours a month attending events and working toward Fellowship goals


Picture of Sean Paul

Sean Paul

Grammy Winning Artist / Mentor

Picture of Dr. Carolyn Cooper

Dr. Carolyn Cooper

Educator / Elder

Picture of Chronixx


Artist Mentor

Picture of Marcia Griffiths

Marcia Griffiths

Recording Artist / Elder

Picture of Dr. Maya Soetoro

Dr. Maya Soetoro

Educator / Mentor

Picture of JLL


Grammy Nominated Producer / Mentor

Picture of Mutabaruka


Dub Poet / Elder

Picture of Lila Ike

Lila Ike

Artist Mentor


Are you a young artist of color, eager to use your musical talent for social change? If you're between 16-24 and ready to make an impact, the VERSIONS Youth Fellowship awaits you. Stay ahead of the game for this year's application - join our email list now for all the latest updates and be part of a movement that amplifies voices for change.

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A Darkspark

Founded by musicians, Darkspark is a not-for-profit organization representing a culturally diverse network of recording artists, music producers, educators, and filmmakers who harness pop culture as a catalyst for social change. Through a variety of songwriting, recording, and digital storytelling projects, Darkspark inspires youth to use the power of their voice to reduce prejudice and promote intercultural understanding.

We believe investing in young people is the best strategy to solve challenging social issues. We believe pop culture can be a force of social change. Join us.