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Get ready for Searchlight 2017, our hunt for Canada's next big music act

Editorial Staff

The Searchlight finale will air Sunday, April 9 at 6:00 pm E.T. on CBC-TV and on our facebook page,

CBC Music’s annual contest to find Canada's next big music act is back.

This year, we have some huge prizes in store for the winner, who will be chosen on a prime-time TV broadcast April 9 (you can watch last year's here). New for this year, the grand prize winner will also receive an original song commission for Canada’s 150 celebration and a two-week songwriting residency, with a celebrity mentor, from the Banff Centre to write it. The winner will debut the song at the 2017 CBC Music Festival in Toronto, followed by a Searchlight concert with the other top four finalists on July 2 as part of the National Arts Centre’s concert series.

Here are some links to help you along:

Rules and regulations, including key contest dates

Meet the Searchlight industry panel

Meet Ruth B, one of this year's Searchlight celebrity judges

For more, including playlists highlighting some of this year's acts, go to

Below, Check out some of the highlights from last year’s competition, including winner Desirée Dawson.