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Music

The Ontario Arts Council supports artists and organizations working in a variety of styles and genres of music. Read on to discover what program best suits your music organization or project.

In fulfilling its mandate, the OAC serves one of the most diverse cultural, racial, linguistic and Aboriginal populations in Canada. Through its programs and services, the OAC supports artists, organizations and communities across Ontario, and welcomes all forms of artistic expression and practice.

  • Choirs & Singing Groups offers project grants toward the professional artistic and production costs for rehearsal and repertoire development, and self-presented concert series or individual concerts. This program is open to choral organizations and singing groups or collectives with a minimum of 4 members in a variety of vocal genres (e.g. singing circle, Aboriginal vocal drum group, a cappella ensemble, vocal jazz ensemble, etc.).   
  • Choral Organizations provides operating grants to not-for-profit professionally lead choral organizations that have presented at least two years of regular programming. Applicants to this program must have a budget with annual expenses of $100,000 or more, and hire professional administration (full-time, part-time or contract assistance). For first-time applicants to this program, this means that the organization must have at least $100,000 in total revenues for the last completed year, and in projected revenues for the current and request years.    
  • Classical Music Recording offers project grants toward audio recording projects undertaken by professional musicians, ensembles and organizations. Eligible, styles include solo instrument, chamber, choral and orchestral music, electro acoustic and non-Western classical forms, and more.
  • Music Commissioning offers project grants toward composers and/or librettists in creating new works commissioned by an individual or organization. Works can be in classical contemporary musical genres or non-European classical forms.
  • Opera provides operating grants to professional and semi-professional not-for-profit opera companies that have achieved at least two years of sustained programming.
  • Opera Projects offers project grants toward a wide range of opera development and production activity, from fully staged productions to new work development. Eligible applicants are not-for-profit music and theatre organizations as well as artist collectives. 
  • Orchestras provides operating grants to not-for-profit professional and semi-professional orchestras who have completed at least two full seasons when they apply. Applicants to this program must have a budget with annual expenses of $200,000 or more.  For first-time applicants to this program, this means that the organization must have at least $200,000 in total revenues for the last completed year, and in projected revenues for the current and request years.
  • Orchestras Projects offers project grants directed toward the artistic costs of professional, semi-professional and community orchestras who do not receive operating support. For more information on types of orchestras, please see the program guidelines. 
  • Popular Music offers project grants toward creation and recording projects in genres such as folk, roots, country, hip hop, soul, R&B, jazz, blues, rock and pop music, as well as traditional and contemporary Aboriginal music and music stemming from Africa, the Caribbean, the Middle East and Asia. This is not an exhaustive list: our ears are wide open!
    • Category 1 Grants provide support to individuals, bands and collectives who are creating new songs intended for publication, performance or recording, or who want to produce a project, demo or home recording of new songs. No budget is required with your application.
    • Category 2 Grants support individuals, bands and collectives who are creating new professional full-length audio recordings. Grants can cover costs of producing, recording, mixing, editing, mastering, designing, packaging and manufacturing up to 1,000 units. You must submit a detailed budget with your application.
  • Presenter/Producer provides operating grants to not-for-profit music organizations presenting and/or producing live music of any type in a festival and/or series format.
  • Presenter/Producer Projects offers project grants rehearsal and repertoire development as well as the presentation and /or production of single concerts, series and festivals by not-for-profit organizations or artist collectives, ensembles or bands.

You are not limited to the programs listed above.

For more information

  • David Parsons, Classical Music Officer, 416-969-7452, toll free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 7452, dparsons@arts.on.ca
  • Michael Murray, Popular and World Music Officer, 416-969-7439, toll free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 7439, mmurray@arts.on.ca
  • Jessica Deljouravesh, Cross-Sectoral Associate Officer (Choral Organizations / Choirs & Singing Groups / Classical Music Recording), 647-258-5076, toll-free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 5076, jdeljouravesh@arts.on.ca
  • Anna Gauchat, Program Assistant, 416-969-7430, toll-free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 7430, agauchat@arts.on.ca  

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