Aboriginal Peoples Music: Project Grants


Grant Amount

Up to $20,000

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Get Eligibility Information
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The Canada Council for the Arts is committed to equity and inclusion, and welcomes applications from diverse Aboriginal, cultural and regional communities, and from people with disabilities.

Program Description

This program provides funding for projects that have specific goals that relate to one or more of the objectives listed in the Program Guidelines.

Projects can take a variety of forms, depending on the stated needs or goals of the applicant. Activities funded through this program support the creation of original work, and the development of professional skills of Aboriginal music artists, strengthen organizations dedicated to Aboriginal music, and support other activities that restore, preserve, invigorate and raise the profile of Aboriginal music and musicians.


Activities normally funded through this program will be eligible in the New Funding Model, starting April 1, 2017.

Grant Amount

The maximum amount of grants offered for project grants is $20,000.

These grants cannot be used to fund activities that occurred before this program deadline.


Note that meeting the eligibility criteria does not guarantee that you will receive a grant.

Eligibility of Applicants

To apply to the Canada Council for the Arts, you must be a Canadian citizen or have permanent resident status, as defined by Citizenship and Immigration Canada. You do not need to be living in Canada when you apply.

Professional Canadian Aboriginal musicians

The Canada Council defines Aboriginal people as First Nations, Métis and Inuit people. A professional musician is defined as someone who:

  • has specialized training in their field (not necessarily in an academic institution)
  • is recognized as a professional artist by his or her peers
  • is committed to devoting more time to artistic activity, if possible financially
  • has a history of public presentation

Music organizations

Music groups must be led by professional Aboriginal musicians and be made up of professional musicians. They must also have a professional performance history of at least two years. Eligible groups may include non-Canadian members but only the expenses related to the Canadian members of groups are eligible.

Music or arts organizations or ad hoc groups dedicated to Aboriginal music must be led by Aboriginal people and have a music or arts focus, or have a significant history of activity in the arts, particularly music. Ad hoc groups that have come together for the purpose of a project focusing on Aboriginal music are also eligible.

Eligibility of Projects

  • Activities for the professional career and artistic development of Aboriginal musicians and music groups, such as creative development and research, workshops or one-on-one mentorships that increase professional artist’s ability to manage and direct his or her career, develop professional skills or improve performance skills;
  • Activities that contribute to the health and vitality of Aboriginal music organizations, such as strategic planning and other projects that increase the organization’s capacity to meet its mandate, or workshops and courses that ensure that key staff and volunteers have the necessary administrative and management skills.
  • Activities that ensure the presence of Aboriginal music in communities, such as workshops to transfer music knowledge, or individual or community-based research projects that increase learning, appreciation and understanding of Aboriginal music.

Further Information

Gerri Trimble
Program Officer
Music Section

1-800-263-5588 (toll-free) or (613) 566-4414, ext. 4103

TTY: 1-866-585-5559