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Minnesota Emerging Composer Award (MECA)

Awards to Minnesota Emerging Music Composers to
Recognize Past Achievements and Advance Their Careers

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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American Composers Forum (ACF)

Deadline Date:

08/01/19 11:59 PM (Central)


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Awards of $3,000 to Minnesota composers to recognize past achievements and to support artistic projects that will further their careers. Recipients are emerging artists in the early stage of their career who compose in a variety of music genres, including jazz, electronic, experimental, improvised, traditional, and world music.

The American Composers Forum is seeking to expand its reach by identifying and supporting artists working in a variety of non-commercial genres who typically operate outside known circles. The Minnesota Emerging Composer Awards (MECA) were created with the following goals in mind:

- To engage Minnesota-based makers of original music who otherwise might not apply to ACF programs.
- To provide these artists with funds to support a project that promises to have a significant boost to their career.
- To send a message to a broader section of local music creators that ACF is interested in their work, and to see how ACF might support their needs as artists.
- To encourage risk-taking and support the creation of quality new music.

Selection Criteria:

- Quality of musical materials, showing singular artistic voice and vision.
- Nominated artist that take risks in their music making process.
- Significance of the award to the artist’s career.
- Potential for artistic growth.
- A record of seeking opportunities to advance their artistic career, which could lead the candidate to apply/participate in other ACF programs.
- The final pool will reflect a range of artists and projects, diverse in genre, gender, race, ethnicity, and geography.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 181861

Estimated Size of Grant:


Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Nominee Eligibility:

- You may nominate anyone with whom you have personal experience, even if they are friends, family members, coworkers, or simply artists you admire. The identity of the nominators will be kept confidential to the judging panel. It is preferred that you not let your nominee know that you are nominating them.
- You may repeat the process and nominate more than one artist.
- Self-nominations are not accepted.
- No formal musical training is required.
- Open to emerging artists who are just starting out in their career, up-and-coming, under-recognized, with no national reputation, few professional accolades, and no more than a handful of paid commissions.
- Arrangers, Lyricists, and Producers are ineligible.
- Bands and groups are ineligible unless all works are collaboratively created.
- Artists may create collaboratively but the work sample descriptions must make clear their individual role in the creative process.
- Nominees must be legal residents of the state of Minnesota and must have been a resident for at least one year prior to nomination.
- Nominees can not be participating in any degree granting programs in any field.
- Previous MECA winners may not be nominated again.
- ACF membership of the nominator and nominee is not required for nomination.
- Staff and board of the American Composers Forum and immediate family members are not eligible to nominate nor can they be nominated.
- Staff and board of The Jerome Foundation, as well as immediate family members of foundation arts program staff are not eligible to nominate nor can they be nominated.
- Nominees can not be awarded a Minnesota Emerging Composer Award (MECA) and ACF Create in the same year.
- Nominees who have applied for ACF program support prior to nomination (as determined by ACF staff) are ineligible.

Pre-Application Information:

The nomination process will be open to the public Tuesday, May 7, 2019 – Thursday, August 1, 2019 11:59 PM (Central).

During the nomination period, ACF staff will contact qualified nominees to verify eligibility. If the nominee meets all eligibility requirements ACF staff will provide a short application for the nominee to complete by the deadline of September 1, 2019 11:59 PM CST.

Panelists remain anonymous until after the results are announced in December 2019.

Contact Information:

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

To nominate an artist online:

Wiliam Lackey
(651) 251-2833

American Composers Forum
75 West 5th Street, Suite 522
Saint Paul, MN 55102-1439
(651) 228-1407

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Minnesota