Baltimore Symphony Music Director Marin Alsop coaches students in the BSO OrchKids program

Marin Alsop coaches OrchKids students

“Some of your most gratifying musical experiences will be those that serve the greater good.”
The Musician’s Way, p. 299

Whether we’re looking to raise money to support the likes of touring, presenting, project development, or music education programs such as OrchKids, it can be challenging to identify funders and write effective proposals.

The following resources help grantseekers do both.

  • For grant writing tips, explore GrantSpace.org’s Knowledge Base. There you’ll find a wealth of tutorials and examples. If you haven’t yet pinpointed your goals and financial needs, reference the Introduction to Business Plans from the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.
  • The Foundation Center offers free and low-cost resources too, and, for subscribers, provides searchable databases with in-depth information about funders  (many university libraries provide students and faculty with free access to FC resources).
  • For a free online directory of grant programs, check out the New York Foundation for the Arts Source. “Listings include over 4,500 arts organizations, 3,600 award programs, 4,700 service programs, and 900 publications for individual artists across the country.”
  • The Grantsmanship Center site features an Index of Funding Sources that supplies information about local, national, and international grantors. Similarly, Guidestar offers a potent tool for discovering and learning about US nonprofit organizations. The Chronicle of Philanthropy also publishes useful tips and resources.
  • Community foundations often support arts and education projects as well advanced study. The Council on Foundations publishes a handy online Community Foundations Locator.
  • The Michigan State University Library has put together a list of Resources that includes funders who award grants to individual musicians.
  • In the U.S., regional and state arts agencies fund touring, arts-in-education programs, and much more. The U.S. Regional Arts Organizations website serves as a portal to all of those organizations.
  • To discover funding available from U.S. government entities, visit Grants.gov – both domestic and overseas projects can receive support. Non-profit and educational institutions might also want to peruse the grant programs from the National Endowment for the Arts.
  • Many professional associations operate grant programs for their members, so it’s worth investigating the offerings from organizations in your specialty. Chamber Music America, for instance, sponsors grants in Jazz and Classical genres that help pay for commissioning, presenting, and more. New Music USA oversees a number of innovative grant programs, many of them for composers.

To learn about many new funding opportunities as they arise, subscribe to The Musician’s Way Newsletter. Visit the Music Careers page at MusiciansWay.com for additional resources, including ones to use for crowdfunding.

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Differentiate or Disappear
Partnering with Non-Profits

What Makes an Entrepreneurial Musician?

© 2012 Gerald Klickstein
Updated Nov. 2016

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