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Music Recording Projects

Grants to Ontario Musicians, Composers, and Nonprofit
Music Organizations to Record Albums, EPs, and Demos

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Ontario Arts Council (OAC)

Deadline Date:

11/15/18 1:00 PM


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Grants of up to $5,000 and grants of up to $12,000 to Ontario musicians, composers, ad hoc groups and collectives, and nonprofit music organizations, orchestras, and choirs for the recording of full-length albums, demos, and EPs. The purpose of this program is to support music works by Ontario-based songwriters and composers, as well as works by other Canadians.

Project Categories:

Demo/EP recordings:
-EP recording of a series of songs that may be released individually or as a short album, 25 minutes maximum, intended for public release
-Demo recordings for the purpose of demonstrating newly developed work for labels, funders, presenters, promoters, festivals, etc. These recordings may or may not also be intended for public release

Full-length album:
-A single work or collection of compositions, 26 minutes minimum, recorded for public release in physical format or an online platform. The album is only considered complete after it has been publicly released. If you are applying for this category, you should be ready or nearly ready to begin recording. Note: Full-length recording projects are only considered complete once the recording is publicly available

The program’s priorities are to support:
-Music created by Ontario composers/songwriters as well as works by other Canadians. If your project features non-Ontario composers, a compelling case should be made for how the project will add to what is currently available to the public (for example, currently unrecorded, rare music, or a foremost performer of the music of a specific composer)
-Projects that enhance the range of recorded music available to the public (locally, nationally and internationally)

This program funds:
-Recording, mixing, mastering
-Artist and producer fees, including fees to the applicant. For live recordings, additional artist fee for recording (i.e. step-up fees) are eligible, but not the fee for live performance itself
-Studio and venue rental
-Recording media, such as tape and hard drives
-Packaging artwork and design
-Promotion and marketing expenses including web design that will assist with distribution
-Manufacturing, up to the first 1,000 units
-Equipment rental

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 153157

Estimated Size of Grant:

-Demo/EP recordings: Maximum $5,000
-Full-length album: Maximum $12,000

Term of Contract:

The activities for which you are requesting funding must be completed no more than two years after you receive the grant results.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Applicants:
-Professional musicians and composers who are Ontario residents and have a permanent physical address in Ontario
-Professional music ad hoc groups/collectives and organizations based in Ontario with a permanent physical address in Ontario
-Ontario-based, professionally-led community orchestras and choirs, as well as choral training groups whose project includes fees to professional musicians or composers

Eligibility Requirements:

Eligible applicants include Ontario-based:
-Individual professional artists and/or arts professionals
-Ad hoc groups/collectives

All applicants must have a permanent physical address in Ontario.

In some project programs, municipalities, colleges/universities, school boards, First Nation and schools administered by a First Nation or Indigenous Education Authority are eligible.

Individuals must:
-Be a professional artist/arts professional. The OAC defines a professional artist/arts professional as someone who has developed skills through training or practice, is recognized by artists working in the same artistic tradition, has a history of public presentation or publication, seeks payment for her or his work and actively practices his or her art. Short breaks in artistic work history are acceptable.
-Be a Canadian citizen or a Permanent Resident of Canada, or have an application pending for Permanent Resident status and, if requested, be able to provide documentation to verify this.
-Be a resident of Ontario who has lived in Ontario for a minimum of one year prior to making a grant application, and
-Live in Ontario no less than eight months a year.

IMPORTANT - Absences from Ontario:
In some circumstances, you may be eligible to apply to OAC while you are temporarily absent from Ontario (e.g. for employment or artistic opportunity). Your absence must be no more than one year and not recurring. You must maintain your permanent physical address in Ontario, and you cannot apply for support from the jurisdiction of your temporary residence.

Ad hoc groups/collectives:
-Must  have 50 percent of their members residing in Ontario
-Must be comprised of at least two members who are Ontario-based professional artists, artistic leaders or arts professionals, and who will be responsible for the administration of the grant on behalf of the ad hoc group/collective;
-Cannot be a corporation
-Can deposit a grant cheque in the name of the ad hoc group/collective
Note: Ad hoc groups/collectives come together for a one-time project (ad hoc group) or have ongoing activity (collective).
Organizations must:
-Be incorporated in Ontario or federally
-Have a head office in Ontario
-Be governed by a volunteer board of directors or an advisory board
-Have a designated staff member responsible for the applicant’s arts programming
-Present/produce/publish professional Ontario artists, arts professionals and/or arts groups/ collectives and/or arts organizations

The OAC supports incorporated not-for-profit organizations.

Ineligible Applicants:
-Recording studios
-Record companies/labels, managers, agents and lawyers
-Municipalities, colleges, and/or universities
-Religious institutions
-Organizations that receive a grant in the Music Organizations: Operating program
-Organizations that receive an operating grant in other OAC programs, with the exception of organizations mandated to serve one or more of the OAC priority groups.

This program does not fund:
-Expenses for activities that take place outside of Ontario
-School projects
-Compilation projects (i.e. an album that is exclusively a re-release of previously recorded material that has been made public)
-Video projects, including music videos
-Recordings of film scores/soundtracks as part of a movie/video production, video projects or incidental music for dance or theatre productions
-Live concert production costs
-Capital expenses
-Fundraising activities

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline to apply is May 16 and November 15, 2018, 1:00 PM ET.

Applications are available in Nova approximately two months before the deadline.

Grant notification will be available approximately four months after each deadline.

OAC Priority Groups:

Guide to OAC Project Programs:

Nova User Guide:

Guide to OAC Assessment:

Guide to OAC Support Materials:

Grant Program Deadlines:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online through Nova:

Jenny Knox, Program Administrator
Phone: 416-969-7430
Toll-free in Ontario: ​​​​​​1-800-387-0058 ext. 7430

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario