11 March 2022

Financial support for music - two new initiatives

The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) announced on Wednesday (9 Mar.) a new programme to provide financial assistance to enable one or more bands from outside North America to take part in this year's World Of Bluegrass (27 Sept.-1 Oct.) in Raleigh, NC, and open up possibilities of subsequent tours in the US. The IBMA International Band Performance Grant is expounded in more detail in the IBMA press release and in John Lawless's article on Bluegrass Today. For further information, e-mail Pat Morris, the IBMA executive director.
Nearer home, we learn from the Music Network agency today (11 Mar.) that Catherine Martin T.D., minister for tourism, culture, arts, the Gaeltacht, sport, and media, has confirmed funding of €335,500 for the Music Capital Scheme, comprising three different awards, which supports the purchase of musical instruments and is designed to respond to a broad range of capital needs within the music sector in Ireland. Thousands have already benefited from the scheme to date, and this latest move 'will support a wide range of musicians nationwide and across all genres, giving them access to instruments and enabling them to develop their talent for live performance'.

A new award is offered specifically for emerging professional musicians. This complements the awards for established professional musicians and non-professional performing groups. Music Network is committed to equity and inclusion, and welcomes applications from individuals within culturally diverse communities and people with disabilities. Information sessions will be held on Tues. 29 Mar. for non-professional performing groups (Award 1) and on Thurs. 31 Mar. for established and emerging individual professional performing musicians (Awards 2 and 3) at 6.00 p.m. on the Music Network Facebook page.

The Music Capital scheme was introduced by the Arts Council, the IRMA Trust, and Music Network as an action-research initiative, was established in 2008, and is now managed by Music Network. It has funded 413 awards, benefiting more than 42,000 people of all ages throughout Ireland. It is open for applications from today (Fri. 11 Mar.) to Thurs. 21 Apr. at 2.00 p.m. Guidelines documents and application forms are available on www.musicnetwork.ie or from Sarah Cunningham at +353 (0) 83 095 5956 or by e-mail.

© Richard Hawkins

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