3.1 National and International



1. Export Strategies

2. Digital Rights

3. Support and Funding

3.1 National and International

3.2 Regional

4. International 101

5. Conclusion

3.1 National and International

Here is a selection of both financial and non-financial support available for composers and sound artists.

Arts Council England/British Council Artists' International Development Fund (administered by Arts Council England)

This fund focuses on British export development, aiming to offer early stage development opportunities for individual, recognised artists based in England to build links with artists, organizations and creative producers in other countries. Open to artists from any discipline, the programme offers small grants between £1,000 and £5,000.

We spoke to Paul Bonham, Diversity Manager at Arts Council England in London about accessing and succeeding with AIDF.

"The AIDF is a highly competitive and in demand fund, but the good news is we are increasing the budget for the next two rounds which will see an increased success rate from 24%,” comments Bonham."

There will be revised guidance notes which are now available on the website below.



Bonham added some general observations of advice to potential applicants:

     Artists often have not fully demonstrated the development opportunities presented by the partnership or host organisation/artist.

      Many provide very slim evidence of the host’s involvement and there are a remarkable number of ineligible applications due to omission of the mandatory supporting document.

      The programme alongside artistic development opportunities is also about the professional development and benefits of international working. It’s as much about the relationships and experiences. Often applications across the board are about aspiring or indulgent personal/artistic dreams and are therefore not as compelling against other applications. This is particularly the case if the artist has very limited track record working alone or internationally – which although this is indeed whatthe fund is aimed at, it can sometimes come across as a request for a holiday!


Remember, The British Council and the Arts Council want the programme to have an impact, so think about their objectives when applying. They are:

      A cadre of artists and creative practitioners in the UK (and also globally) who have experienced the benefits of international working between the UK and other countries and are advocates for it among their peers

      An increase in the amount of international collaboration among artists between the UK and other countries across the arts and creative industries

      Artistic development for artists


There are a few guides that have been written to support composers applying for the fund. Here are some links:

     Artsquest’s ‘Quick and Dirty’ Guide’

     Stuart Wood’s Plain English Tips


Aspen Music Festival and School:

Part of the Aspen Festival, the summer school in Aspen offers composers one of the most dedicated and structured education in classical music training and performance in the USA.  It offers bursaries and subsidised funding for international students for its 4-6 week summer program called The Aspen Experience.  There are over 600 students taking part in over 300 performances. There are also fellowship opportunities which pay a $500 travel stipend.

Website:    http://www.aspenmusicfestival.com/


Banff Centre for the Arts

The Centre is a professional arts centre in Alberta, Canada. It is committed to the advanced training of artists in all disciplines, and to supporting the creative process in all its forms. Scholarships are available for UK musicians for study at The Banff Centre, contributing towards fees.

Website:  http://www.banffcentre.ca


BBC Performing Arts Fund - Music Fellowships

The BBC Arts fund is a charity aimed at developing emerging performing arts talent from across the UK and offers grants and support across the creative industries. Launched in 2012, the scheme supports artists in the early stages of their career by providing them with placements at music organizations. Although individual musicians can apply, the BBC are also looking for music organizations, venues and festivals to whom to provide placement.

Website:   http://www.bbc.co.uk/performingartsfund/grants/music-fellowships


Beyond Borders

Beyond Borders is a co-commissioning and touring programme run, with funding of up to £15,000 made available for projects that include new commissions, recordings and repeat performances of music written in the past five years. The aim or to stimulate the collaboration between organisations and ensembles in England, Northern lreland, the Republic of Ireland, Scotland and Wales, enables music creators to produce new material to be performed in at least three of these countries.

Website:    http://prsformusicfoundation.com/Partnerships/Flagship-Programmes/Beyond-Borders


Bliss Trust Partnership Composer Bursaries

Annually awarded by PRS for Music Foundation and Bliss Trust, the fund offers small bursaries of up to £500 to be used for professional development purposes that might go towards professional recordings, travel costs or computer software. Restricted to composers based in the UK, the scheme is targeted at composers (focused on classical music) who have yet to establish themselves as professional practitioners. The fund is not available for assistance directly relating to curricular studies, but applications will be considered to assist with costs relating to copying, computer hardware or software (or similar resources), travel costs relating to performance, commissioning fees, supplementary study, and support of professional recordings of new works or promotional recordings.

Website:     http://www.prsformusicfoundation.com/Partnerships/Professional-Development/Composer-Bursaries


British Council

British Council has a dedicated music team, based in London, and offers music education and development projects in over 80 countries, mainly in countries where English is a second language. They specialise in creating artists' residencies in new markets (such as China) and funding audio-visual compositional projects, such as Super Everything or Folk Nations. Most of their projects offer funding to the composer or sound artist involved.

Website: http://music.britishcouncil.org/projects


Collard Fellowship

The fellowship is designed to give financial assistance to a professional musician of outstanding ability who is prevented from fully exercising and exploiting his or her talent. Candidates must have shown excellence in one or more of the higher branches of musical activity, such as composition, performance (which includes conducting), and research (which includes research into music therapy). The fellowship carries with it an honorarium of £5,000.

Website:  http://www.wcom.org.uk


Concours de Geneve/Geneva International Music Competition – Composition Prize

Awarded in March 2011 for the first time by Geneva International Music Competition, this biennial award offers up to CHF15,000 in prize compensation and prizewinning work is published by the Geneva Music Competition. The competition is open to composers of all nationalities under the age of 40, and the international selection committee whittles down the first round of open applications, while the official jury chooses its winner from the short-listed pool.

Website: http://fundingforartists.org.uk/composers/2012/02/22/concours-de-genevegeneva-international-music-competition



Darmstadt Summer School

Darmstadt is a summer school program offering residencies as a meeting point for thinkers, composers, musicians and sound artists. There are over 300 participants for a month in Darmstadt, Germany and there are scholarships and bursaries available to UK composers and sound artists.

Website:   http://www.internationales-musikinstitut.de/en/summer-course.html


Finzi Scholarship Awards

Annually awarded by The Finzi Trust, grants are made in the region of £2,000 and £5,000 for music-based projects in the UK or abroad. Projects should last between two and eight weeks and might show creative initiative, education or research. The scholarships seek to recognise and perpetuate the philosophical, creative and enabling breadth of vision of the English composer, Gerald Finzi. Eligibility is limited to UK residents. 

Although no formal qualifications are necessary, applicants need to prove that they can carry out their proposals.

Website:   www.geraldfinzi.org/indexf8b7.html?page=trust/scholarshipAwards.html


Harvard University Summer Composition Institute:

Harvard University offers a two-weeks summer composition bootcamp for composers and sound artists, usually held in August outside of Boston.  The University pays accommodation and meals for the 12 composers selected for the two-week period.

Website:    http://summercompositioninstitute.org/Home_Page.html

Help Musicians UK

Offering up to £3,000 for each applicant (development grants are between £500 and £1,500 and large grants are over £1,500) with two deadlines per year often in January and June, the fund is aimed at individual artists or groups working in any genre of music who are within the new and emerging stages of their career or final stages of advanced music training. The fund aims to support professional demo recordings, engagement with early stage industry and localized touring. Applicants should be able to demonstrate financial need, be aged between 18-30 and must be British or Irish or have lived in the UK for at least five consecutive years.

Contact: Tim Foxon, Talent Programme Manager

Email:  tim.foxon@helpformusicians.org.uk



Hinrichsen Foundation

The Foundation is dedicated to the promotion of music, concentrating on the areas of contemporary composition and musicological research.  Grants are available for composition, the production of performance materials, public performance, and research projects and their publication. Assistance is not given for recording costs, the funding of commissions, degree or other study courses, or purchase of instruments or equipment.

Preference is given to United Kingdom applicants. Meetings of the trustees are held quarterly.

Contact: The Secretary

Address: PO Box 309, Leatherhead, Surrey, KT22 2AT

Email:  hinrichsen.foundation@editionpeters.com

Website:  http://www.hinrichsenfoundation.org.uk


International Music Council

The International Music Council is the music organisation for UNESCO, based in Paris.  It’s primarily focused on classical music and more traditional composition, but it offers a yearly conference (changes location each year), a terrific contact list and lobbying activities within the EU. Its programme and programme history section on its website offers lots of networking opportunities, but there’s no funding available directly to attend its events.  Still, a good resource:

Website:  http://www.imc-cim.org/

Email:  info@imc-cim.org (Silja Fischer)


PRS for Music Foundation Open Funding Program

The PRS for Music Foundation’s most accessible program for contemporary music makers is available for performers and songwriters of all ages and stages of development, as long as the applicant has 18 months professional experience. Grants are up to £5,000, with the average applicant receiving £3,000-£4,000. The fund supports the creation and performance of new music, developing artists to their full potential, and inspiring audiences.

Website:   http://www.prsformusicfoundation.com/Funding/Open-Funding


Other PRS for Music Foundation programmes include:

1.  International Showcase Fund - they sent a composer pianist to Classical Next

2.  Musicians in Residence - China - have supported composer-performer Anna Meredith, cellist/creator Oliver Coates and last yea Matthew Bourne - experimental jazz improviser/performer/composer


Royal Philharmonic Society

The Prize offers two annual commissions with guaranteed performances and is open to composers of any nationality under 29 years old. Applicants must be present or past registered students of a conservatoire or university within the United Kingdom. All entries must include a letter from the Principal of the conservatoire, or Head of Department of the university, confirming that the entrant fulfils these conditions.

Website:    http://www.royalphilharmonicsociety.org.uk/?page=composers/composition

Tanglewood Music Summer School:

Part of Boston University and the official school of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Tanglewood offers fellowship opportunities to UK composers and sound artists across a number of classical disciplines, including strings, vocal performance and piano. Financial aid is made on a case-by-case basis.

Website:   http://www.bso.org/micro-sites/tanglewood-music-center/home.aspx


The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust

This tribute to Sir Winston offers Travelling Fellowships to enable British citizens to acquire knowledge and experience abroad. Each year the Council of the Trust selects 10-12 different categories, within which specific project applications may be submitted. Churchill Fellows can be of any age, background or occupation. However, the Fellowship scheme does not cover the costs of courses, academic studies, student grants or gap year projects.

Contact: The Trust Office

Address: 15 Queen's Gate Terrace, London, SW7 5PR

Telephone: 020 7799 1660

Email: office@wcmt.org.uk

Website:  http://www.wcmt.org.uk


Walden Summer School

The Walden School is a travelling network of opportunities in the United States for composers, sound artists and creative entrepreneurs.  It has both a young and adult musicians program, providing compositional bootcamps in both San Francisco and Concord, New Hampshire in the USA.  Most of its activities are in the summer, in Concord.

Website:   http://waldenschool.org/


Women Make Music

Established in 2010, Women Make Music offers female music creators financial grants of up to £5,000. Eligibility is similar to the PRS for Music Foundation’s Open Funding and is open to individuals, artists and organizations working in any genre. The grants aim to breakdown assumptions and stereotypes within the music industry, increase the profile of female music creators, increase collaborations with female music creators and raise awareness that such support is available, and focus on the creation of new music for live performance and recording and music creator residencies.

Website:   http://www.prsformusicfoundation.com/Funding/Women-Make-Music/


Ulysses Network:

Ulysses is a European network for the promotion and support of young contemporary musical creation. You will find information about the different programs developed by the Ulysses network partners.

On this website, you can apply online for a range of competitions, applications, and reading panels set up by the network partners.

Website:  http://www.ulysses-network.eu/web/home/


Visby International Centre for Composers

Visby is a work and meeting place for composers from the Baltic Sea Region and the Nordic countries as well as the rest of the international world of composers.  You can apply for this at anytime and the institute will cover free studio time and accommodation, but travel and living expenses are up to the composer. In 2013, over 1000 composers participated from over 60 countries.

Website:  http://vicc.se/


Jerwood Charitable Foundation

The programme offers project and programme funding, prioritizing the development of individuals at transitional stages of their careers, and is delivered primarily through partnerships with outstanding arts organizations throughout the UK.

Contact: Jon Opie

Email:  jon.opie@jerwood.org

Website:   http://www.jerwoodcharitablefoundation.org/

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