Victoria is injecting a considerable amount of money into the local music scene to aid musicians in pursuing their creative endeavors and emboldening the city’s vibrant arts scene.
The city has a Creative Victoria Arts & Culture Master Plan which staff and council have been chipping away at since its inception in 2016 — the Victoria Music Strategy (VMS) is but one facet of that master plan.
This month, Victoria announced it would start handing out music grants up to $10,000 for a wide-array of projects, on a monthly basis.
This money is meant to help bridge the gap in the music ecosystem in Victoria for bands trying to break through barriers such as affordability of venues, recording and limited rehearsal spaces.
The money is available to those who have a project the city deems worth funding whether they are a musician, a music professional or a non-profit organization involved in the music sector.
Victoria’s priority is to get the money into the hands of folks and musicians who will:
- Connect people and spaces by creating spaces for music
- Nurturing talent by supporting musicians and music organizations
- Aiding musicians by helping them grow their audience
- Prepare the city for the future by innovating the music scene
- Creating music friendly policies and licensing
Musicians or bands must have a registered non-profit partner in order to be eligible.
The city has outlined in their program guidelines that the only ineligible activities or expenditures are: expenses taken on before the application’s submission, purchasing equipment, endeavours that are already receiving funding from Victoria or the CRD and non-music related activities or programming.
Last week an online virtual information session was held by the city for those interested, but there is an additional in-person open house in which there will be resources related to the VMS grants.
The event is scheduled for Thursday, May 25th and will be taking place between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. in NeighbourSpace which is located at 711 Douglas Street.
At the drop-in session, city staff will be able to answer questions and teach interested parties about the criteria necessary to be successful in securing the grants.
The VMS music grant program’s guidelines for applying are available through the City of Victoria’s website, as is the application form and a city staff contact for applicants who have questions about the grants.
The grants will be handed out monthly to those who are successful in their application beginning in May, up until November 30th or until a total of $150,000 has been handed out.
Special consideration will be given to projects which will aid Victoria’s music scene in becoming more equitable, diverse, inclusive and unique.
The $150,000 that will be handed out to eligible projects is part of Victoria’s $1.7 million investment in the arts and culture of the city over the next five years.