Grants to Professional Musicians - Individuals



1 November, 2016
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Grant Amount

$12000 - $24000

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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.

Please refer to the complete Program Guidelines [PDF, 574.5 KB].

Program Description

This program offers opportunities to individual professional Canadian musicians to pursue their artistic and creative development. Professional musicians include performers, composers, arrangers, conductors, lyricists, librettists and opera stage directors.

The program has two components:

  • Long-Term Grants are available for a seven to twelve month period.
  • Short-Term Grants are available for a maximum period of six months.

General fields of music

The Canada Council recognizes that there are well over 100 genres of music in Canada but it uses the term “general fields of music” for its categorization needs. Applicants will be asked to identify their specific genre of music.

Professional musicians whose practices are in the following general fields of music are eligible: 

  • Aboriginal
  • Classical/contemporary
  • Electroacoustic/Audio art
  • Folk/traditional
  • Improvised/Musique actuelle
  • Instrumental
  • Jazz
  • Songwriting
  • World

La Cité Internationale des Arts (

A studio-apartment at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris is also available (to applicants to the Long-Term Grants component only) at a moderate cost.

It may be used for a period of three months to one year, from 1 September to 31 August. 


1 November, 2016: Short-term Grant

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

Grant Amount

Long-term grants: Up to $24,000 is available for long-term projects

Short-term grants: Up to $12,000 is available for short-term projects


Applicant Eligibility

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

For this program, applicants cannot apply to two consecutive deadlines.

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.

You must also meet the Canada Council’s definition of a professional artist, which is an artist who:

  • has specialized training in the field (not necessarily in academic institutions)
  • is recognized as a professional by his or her peers (professional artists working in the same artistic tradition)
  • is committed to devoting more time to artistic activity, if possible financially
  • has a history of public presentation in a professional context.

To apply to this program, you must also meet the eligibility requirements of one of the following categories of applicants:

  • Emerging artists are those who have completed their basic training (university graduation or equivalent in specialized or self-training). They must have had an active professional career for at least two years, in addition to performances while in academic settings or as part of specialized training programs.
  • Mid-career artists are no longer full-time students and must have completed their formal studies at least five years before applying to this program. They must have had an active professional career for at least five years.
  • Established artists are those who have made a nationally or internationally recognized contribution to music over a number of years and are still active in their profession.

Collaborative creation projects

You can use these grants to work with another artist (from the same artistic discipline), but only on creation projects. There can be only two artists involved in collaborative creation projects, and both must meet the program’s eligibility criteria.

We consider a project as collaboration when both artists share the artistic control of the project and share the intellectual property rights of the resulting works. 

Project Eligibility

You can use these grants:
  • for advanced studies in composition or performance, privately or at an institution (the Canada Council considers advanced studies to be those beyond a Bachelor of Music degree or equivalent private or self-training)
  • to compose (personal creative projects only)
  • to arrange (personal arranging projects only)
  • to research new forms of music or new repertoire that will be used in the performance or composition of new works
  • for collaborative creation projects
  • to attend workshops/master classes for individual professional artistic development.

Further Information

Program Officers
Music Section

1-800-263-5588 (toll-free) or 613-566-4414, and the extension number

André Jutras, ext. 5071

Pierre-Louis Pinel, ext. 5073

TTY: 1-866-585-5559