Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – ART AND LITERARY COMPETITION 2023

We are delighted to announce the Watford Area Arts Forum (WAAF) 2023 Arts & Literary Competition.

The theme is ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ (GYBR), to mark the 50th anniversary of the album’s release.


The competition is now open and the deadline for entries is 1 September 2023. Public online voting via this site will be open from 3 September 2023 until 21 September 2023.

Results and prize giving will be on Saturday 30 September at Watford Museum.

Goodbye Yellow Brick Road was first released in October 1973, and went on to become a multi-platinum award winning album. This provides inspiration for this year’s WAAF competition. We would like to invite you to express your interpretation on the theme in any art form or in writing.

You could use the titles of the individual tracks which include; Candle in the Wind, Bennie and the Jets, Sweet Painted Lady and many more. Or, you may wish to use the artwork by Ian Beck on the album cover as inspiration?

You can put any slant on your entry as long as it has some relevance to the album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.

Voting will initially be online by the public, with the top ten in each category being passed to an external judge for the final decision.

Art Challenge

Entries can be in any form of media; oils, watercolours, pen and ink, collages, photographs etc.

They can be submitted in photo form from now until the deadline of 1 September for online voting. The original piece will be displayed at Watford Museum and you will have the option of selling your work with a 10% commission payable to WAAF.

We are delighted that Ian Beck, author, illustrator and the original artist for the album cover, will be the final judge after the public vote.

Please submit your work under the theme and your interpretation of this, but please give your entry a title other than Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.

Writing Challenge

Can you come up with 500 words based on the themes in the tracks on the album, the artworks or any inspiration from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road? This could be in the style of a factual or fictional story that you are bursting to write, or maybe a poem, a short play, or a monologue?

Please note the entries should have no less than 300 words and please entitle your work something other than Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.

We are delighted that Mick Callanan, Delivery Director for the Orwell Youth Prize and an English Teacher for 30 years will be the final judge after the public vote.

The winners of both the art and literary competitions will receive:

1st prize The Harrington Trophy and a £50 cash prize
2nd prize is £30
3rd prize is £20

Prizes kindly donated by Watford Borough Council.

The competition will form part of a larger celebration of the album’s anniversary, including events to be held at the Watford Fringe Festival, 22 September – 8 October 2023. You might be interested in creating a performance based on the Goodbye Yellow Brick Road theme?

Please complete the entry form below, then email your entry to

Please see competition rules here.

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