** Closing date extension: the closing date for this program has been extended to 5pm, 22 February 2021 **
If you have received funding through this program and your project has been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19), please contact program staff listed below.
The Music Works Grants program invests in the development and support of Victoria's contemporary music artists and music industries. It provides support for projects and programs that will sustain, develop and grow Victoria's contemporary music sector, increase employment and build cultural and economic outcomes. The program is open to new ideas, new modes of practice and new approaches to the delivery of contemporary music that will build on Victoria's position as a world famous live music capital and Australia's contemporary music hub.
Creative Victoria encourages applications from First Peoples and First Peoples led- micro organisations/businesses, Deaf and Disabled people and disability-led micro businesses/organisations, Regionally based applicants, LGBTQI+ applicants, young people and applicants from culturally and linguistically diverse communities
Applicants may apply for Project Costs plus Access Costs, if applicable.
- $4,000 - $35,000 for individuals
- $10,000 - $100,000 for groups/organisations
Please contact program staff to discuss how to include access costs in your application and budget as they will vary depending on the applicant and size/scope of project.
**Online grant information session - 28 January 12pm-1pm
Presented by the Creative Victoria grants team (and in partnership with VMDO and Music Victoria) the webinar provided an overview of the program, including eligibility, application and assessment processes.
Who can apply
The Music Works program accepts applications from Victorian based contemporary music industry professionals from all genres and career stages. This may include: artists/bands, performers, agents, managers and promoters, labels, recording studios, venues, production companies, contractors such as bookers, sound and lighting technicians, music industry businesses and organisations (also see General Eligibility).
For the February 2021 funding round, applicants can only apply to one of these programs: Creative Workers Fund or Music Works Grants.
This means you must choose the most relevant program and cannot submit applications to more than one of these programs.
Applicants may apply for both Creators Fund and Music Works in February 2021, for separate activities.
Recipients of funding through the VicArts Grants September 2020 Round and the Victorian Music Industry Recovery Program are only eligible to apply for activity under Stream 1: Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events of the Music Works Program.
Round opens: 20 January 2021 via the Creative Victoria Grants Portal
**Extended deadline** Round closes: 5pm, 22 February 2021
It takes approximately 12 weeks from the closing date until funding results are available.
Who to talk to
First Peoples applicants (All Streams)
Kaushali Seneviratne: 03 8683 3106 or via email at
Deaf and Disabled applicants (All Streams)
Kaushali Seneviratne: 03 8683 3106 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events
Chloe Turner: 03 8683 3179 or via email at
|Create and Release|
Katrina Lee: 03 8683 3165 or via email at
Building Capacity (Professional Development)
Hannah Schneider: 03 8683 3128 or
Connecting to Markets
Hannah Schneider: 03 8683 3128 or
Links and downloads
- Word: Music Works February 2021 program guidelines DOCX, 154.7 KB
- PDF: Music Works February 2021 program guidelines PDF, 237.3 KB
- Accessible Guidelines Music Works 2021 DOCX, 151.6 KB
- Audio Version Guidelines MP3, 75.4 MB
- Accessible FAQs Music Works 2021 DOCX, 29.7 KB
- Application drafting tool - Music Works February 2021 DOC, 137.5 KB
- Accessible Application drafting tool – Music Works February 2021 DOCX, 46.1 KB
- Budget drafting tool XLS, 159.0 KB
- Tour itinerary template XLS, 52.0 KB
- Information for all applicants
- Creative Victoria Grants Portal
The 2020 Victorian Budget included a substantial package to support live music events across regional and peri-urban communities aimed at bringing Victorians back together and helping our music industry and its thousands of businesses and workers get back on their feet. With Australia’s borders currently new touring circuits and performance opportunities across Victoria. Live music events through Stream 1 of the Music Works program will help reactivate and promote live music in regional and outer-metropolitan Melbourne.
Examples of activities that fall within this stream must occur in regional and/or our-metropolitan Victorian locations and occur as live performance/s in front of a live audience. They can include, but are not limited to:
- One-off or a series of regional live performances
- Regional tours
- Residencies at one or more regional or outer-metropolitan venue/s
- Live music events showcasing a particular region or outer-metropolitan area
We acknowledge that the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation is dynamic. We recommend that you refer to the Victorian government’s dedicated website on coronavirus to keep informed of current restriction levels.
For regional or outer-metropolitan live music events, Creative Victoria will be as flexible as possible should restrictions delay or prevent funded events from proceeding as planned. Program staff will work with recipients as they put in place alternative plans that continue to fit within the program’s aims and priorities, whether in the form of extensions to timelines or alternative modes of delivery.
Under the Victorian Government definition, regional Victoria encompasses 48 regional and rural council areas in Victoria. Consult the Regional Development Victoria website if you are unsure if your activity is taking place in regional Victoria.
For the purposes of this program, outer-metropolitan Melbourne includes the following local government areas: Brimbank City Council, Cardinia Shire Council, City of Casey, City of Greater Dandenong, Frankston City Council, Hume City Council, Kingston City Council, Knox City Council, Manningham City Council, Maroondah City Council, Melton City Council, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Nillumbik Shire Council, City of Whittlesea, Wyndham City Council and Yarra Ranges Shire Council.
Opportunities to tour nationally and internationally remain uncertain due to restrictions introduced in response to COVID-19. Creative Victoria strongly encourages applicants to instead consider touring or delivering live music events in regional Victoria and outer-metropolitan Melbourne. These kinds of activities are supported under Stream 1 of the program (Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events). See the program guidelines for further information.
We acknowledge that the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation is dynamic. We recommend that you refer to the Victorian government’s dedicated website on coronavirus to keep informed of current restriction levels.
We encourage applicants to consider flexible delivery models and activity that can be adapted swiftly to comply with changing restrictions and to state their contingency plan or flexible model as part of their application.
Please reach out to program staff to discuss options if you have any concerns about your project or activity being impacted by COVID-19.
Major Funding Round Grants offer funding of:
- $4,000 to $35,000 for individuals; or
- $10,000 to $100,000 for groups/organisations
plus access costs, if applicable.
Please contact program staff to discuss how to include access costs in your application and budget as they will vary depending on the applicant and size/scope of project. Limits are as follows:
- Deaf and Disabled applicants may apply for the general project costs, plus up to $10,000 to cover any additional specific access costs that will help remove barriers for the creatives/arts workers involved in the project plus up to $10,000 to make the activity accessible to a wider audience (e.g. Auslan, captioning, audio description, materials in other formats).
- All other applicants – may apply for general project costs, plus up to $10,000 to make the activity accessible to a wider audience (e.g. Auslan, captioning, audio description, materials in other formats).
Whilst opportunities to tour nationally and internationally remain uncertain due to restrictions introduced in response to COVID-19, Creative Victoria strongly encourages applicants to instead consider touring or delivering live music events in regional Victoria and outer-metropolitan Melbourne.
1. Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events
This stream will support the delivery of live music events, activity, concerts, tours and performances within outer-metropolitan Melbourne* and regional Victoria*. These events will assist artists to develop audiences, the sector to develop ongoing viable touring circuits, will give regional and outer-metropolitan music artists and professionals more support to grow and develop, and provide further economic and cultural impacts locally. Funded activity will include costs of performance, production, promotion, logistics, travel, accommodation, freight and personnel. Funded events and activity will form part of a broader campaign to reactivate and promote live music in regional and outer-metropolitan areas and will be required to incorporate specific branding. (See “Responsibilities” section on Page 11 of this document for further information.)
- For the purposes of this program, outer-metropolitan Melbourne includes the following local government areas: Brimbank City Council, Cardinia Shire Council, City of Casey, City of Greater Dandenong, Frankston City Council, Hume City Council, Kingston City Council, Knox City Council, Manningham City Council, Maroondah City Council, Melton City Council, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Nillumbik Shire Council, City of Whittlesea, Wyndham City Council and Yarra Ranges Shire Council.
2. Create and Release
This stream supports the creation, recording and release of new original musical works. This may include recording, and other production costs for the creation of new work, and costs associated with a strategic release plan, specifically creation of new intellectual property such as artwork, photos, bios, video content and other digital assets, as well as marketing and promotion costs to support release.
3. Building Capacity (Professional Development)
This stream will support activities which will build industry, creative and business capability for the contemporary music industry. This may include attendance (physically or online) at workshops, masterclasses, industry conferences and other professional development activities which have a direct input into furthering the applicant’s business.
4. Connecting to Markets
This stream is designed to increase the industry's capacity to connect to markets. While COVID-19 restrictions inhibit international travel and touring, audience development opportunities through digital pathways and innovation allow
Victorian artists and music businesses to continue to build globally. Funding through this stream may include strategic marketing and promotional costs, creation of digital assets and content, development of international partnerships and collaboration, including adaption of content for specific territories.
This program includes a dedicated funding stream and assessment process for First Peoples applicants.
First Peoples applicants or First Peoples-led applicant organisations can elect to be assessed through a First Peoples-led assessment process including members of Creative Victoria’s First Peoples Direction Circle and other First Peoples industry experts.
For further details please consult the program guidelines or call program staff.
This program includes a dedicated assessment process for Deaf and Disabled applicants by Deaf and Disabled music industry professionals and peers with lived experience of disability.
In addition to the grant funding of between $4,000 and $35,000 for individuals or between $10,000 and $100,000 for groups/organisations available as general project costs, Deaf and Disabled applicants can receive up to $10,000 to cover any specific access costs that will help remove barriers for the creatives/arts workers involved in the project.
Arts Access Victoria can also provide application advice and auspice services for Deaf and Disabled creatives.
Further, all applicants can apply for additional funding of $10,000 to make their project or activity accessible to a wider audience (e.g. Auslan, captioning, audio description, materials in other formats).
The Music Works program accepts applications from Victorian based contemporary music industry professionals from all genres and career stages. This may include artists/bands, performers, agents, managers and promoters, labels, recording studios, venues, production companies, contractors such as bookers, sound and lighting technicians, music industry businesses and organisations (also see General Eligibility).
Contact us if you work in the music industry and want to discuss your eligibility.
Please note that recipients of funding through the VicArts Grants September 2020 round and the Victorian Music Industry Recovery Program are only eligible for support through this program for activity falling under Stream 1: Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events.
For the purpose of this program, Victorian contemporary music is defined as music that is currently being written, recorded and performed by Victorians. Its genres would include (but are not limited to) blues, country, electronic/dance, experimental, folk, funk, hip hop, jazz, metal, pop, rock and roots and other contemporary genres.
For the purpose of this funding program, Victoria’s contemporary music industry is defined as:
- Victorian musicians creating music now, with a clear intention and strategy to connect with audiences.
- Victorian individuals, organisations and businesses surrounding these musicians which make up the industry in which they operate.
Recipients of funding through VicArts Grants September 2020 round or the Victorian Music Industry Recovery Program are ineligible to apply for funding through the February 2021 round of Music Works unless applying for regional activity falling under Stream 1: Regional and Outer-Metropolitan Live Music Events
No. Demand for Creative Victoria project funding is high, and this will be an extremely competitive program to enter. Applicants must not assume they will be successful or enter into commitments based on that assumption before receiving formal notification of the outcome of their funding. Nor should applicants assume that if they are successful once, they will be successful again in the future. Applications may be refused at the absolute discretion of the decision-maker.
Only one application per applicant or organisation will be accepted. One individual is not able to act as the primary contact for two separate applications. This applies to both individual and group projects.
Yes, you can apply for both the Music Works February 2021 Funding Round and the Creator’s Fund.
No, you must only apply for one of either the Creative Workers Fund or Music Works programs, not both.
Creative Victoria will not consider funding for activity prior to 1 July. You should not enter into any arrangements or make any payments on the assumption you will receive support for activity prior to this date.
As Creative Victoria grants use public money, the allocation of funds through our grants programs requires significant scrutiny and projects cannot be funded until this process has been completed.
Music Works will from time to time allow grant budgets to include payment to non-Victorian services when the overall outcome of the project benefits a Victorian artist or industry individual or organisation as per the assessment guidelines.
Applying to the Program
We encourage you to use the application and budget drafting tools before submitting your application online in the online Grants Portal. These can be downloaded under the ‘Links and Downloads’ heading on the program page.
You can then copy and paste the content of your application from the drafting tools into the online portal application form.
To address the program assessment criteria, you are required to:
- Provide a very short 1-2 sentence description (up to 500 characters max) of the activity or idea, using the format detailed in the Application Drafting Tool.
- Answer the three Application Questions (see below) in the online form using plain English (up to 2000 characters for each question including spaces, punctuation and paragraph spaces). · Provide a balanced Budget (see the Creative Victoria Budget Drafting Tool).
- Provide appropriate and relevant Application Support Material & Documents.
If you don’t have an ABN or you are not sure that you will have the ability to manage the paperwork or requirements associated with a Creative Victoria grant, an organisation or business can submit the application on your behalf.
If your application is successful, this party will receive the funding and will be responsible for managing the funds and reporting to Creative Victoria on your behalf. An auspice organisation can apply to this program on behalf of multiple people/projects.
All eligible applications will be considered by an external panel of peers with music industry expertise, according to each stream. For example, First Peoples’ applications will have a First Peoples-led assessment process and Deaf and Disabled applicants will be assessed Deaf and Disabled peers and people with lived experience of disability.
All applicants will be advised of the outcome within approximately twelve weeks of the closing date. We are working as fast as possible to assess programs at this time.
After applications close, they are checked for eligibility and then allocated to external assessors. Assessors are given a period of time to review the applications and then they meet virtually to discuss recommendations. Recommendations are compiled and provided to the Minister for Creative Industries for final approval.
We are working as fast as possible to assess programs at this time. All applicants will be advised on the outcome of their application within 12 weeks of the closing date.
We acknowledge that in getting funding right, we need to make sure there is diversity in the process from inception to delivery.
Creative Victoria is working with industry representatives to ensure there is diverse representation on assessment panels for this program.
First Peoples applicants or First Peoples businesses or organisations applying under any stream can elect to have their applications assessed through a First- Peoples-led assessment process. Deaf and Disabled applicants or disability-led businesses or organisations applying under any stream may elect to be assessed by a panel of assessors with lived experience of disability.
We will also be reaching out to a broad range of organisations to promote the program and to encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds including applicants who are First Peoples, Deaf and Disabled, women, LGBTI and from culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
All applicants will be advised of the outcome within 12 weeks of the closing date. If successful you will receive a notification email which details any special requirements you may need to meet and what you need to do in order to receive the funds. Payments will then be processed as quickly as possible.
Music Works recipients
RVG has received funding via the Music Works program. Image courtesy RVG.
Auspicious Arts Projects on behalf of Michael Harbus-James, SOUTHBANK, $15,000
For the production and release of two music video clips for the all-female, First Nations hip hop group, Oetha.
Barpirdhila Foundation, PASCOE VALE SOUTH, $30,000
For Barpirdhila Foundation to pilot two youth-based programs to create entry points for young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders within the music sector. The first will be delivered in partnership with Girls Rock! Melbourne and the second with the Korin Gamadji Institute.
Simona Castricum, BRUNSWICK, $18,665
For the production, mixing, mastering and promotion of Simona Castricum's fourth 12-track album, including performances in Melbourne and Sydney, and a proposed international tour.
Chela, LEOPOLD, $13,000
For Chela to market her new EP globally, including the creation of a music video, artwork and photography.
Cosmic Psychos, DRUMMOND, $15,000
For the recording, mixing and mastering of Cosmic Psychos 11th studio album.
Aaron Dobos, FITZROY NORTH, $5,385
To enable Aaron to spend a month in LA learning from successful producers, engineers, writers and studios.
David Dower, FOSTER, $7,647
For jazz and contemporary musician David Dower to embark on his third European tour, performing 15 shows in the UK and Bulgaria.
Kutcha Edwards, GREENHILL, $17,500
For the recording, mixing, mastering and manufacturing of Circling Time, Kutcha Edwards' new album, with support from renowned producer Andy Stewart.
Nicholas Finch, BRUNSWICK, $12,321
For Cash Savage and The Last Drinks to embark on a European tour, consisting of 14 performances across five countries, including networking opportunities.
Foreign Brothers on behalf of SO.Crates, NORTHCOTE, $7,125
For Danika Smith to record her first LP, to be produced by Grammy-nominated engineer Nick Herrera.
Girls Rock Melbourne, BRUNSWICK WEST, $11,985
Girls Rock! to travel to Castlemaine to deliver its music education and empowerment program aimed at female, trans, and gender diverse regional youth aged 10-17.
JNB Events Pty Ltd, KENSINGTON, $24,300
For Loch Hart Music Festival, a three-day music, arts and camping festival in the Corangamite Shire, to host and promote music networking and mentoring opportunities at the event.
Samuel Kuzich, ASCOT VALE, $8,910
For the recording, mixing and mastering of Samuel Kuzich's debut album in collaboration with his live band, and Grammy-nominated producer Perrin Moss.
Candice Lorrae Lloyd, MELBOURNE, $20,300
For the mixing, mastering, release and promotion of The Merindas self-produced debut album.
Music in Exile, THORNBURY, $25,333
For the recording, mixing, mastering and marketing of two full-length albums as part of the Music in Exile project by Asecuma Beats and Mindy Meng Wang in collaboration with Sui Zhen, to be released digitally and on vinyl. This includes the creation of two music videos and media campaign material.
Northcote Social Club, NORTHCOTE, $8,000
For the presentation of Wind It Up, a live music series at the Northcote Social Club celebrating the diversity of cultures and genres that make up the Melbourne music scene.
Olympia, BRUNSWICK EAST, $31,800
For Olympia to embark on a tour of Europe and the UK in support of Flamingo, her second album, including shows at Reeperbahn festival in Berlin, Amsterdam, Paris, Brussels, London, Brighton and Manchester.
Palm Springs, FITZROY NORTH, $15,000
The recording, production, release and marketing of MOD CON's second album.
Pridelands, COLLINGWOOD, $14,480
To record, mix and master Pridelands’ 10-track debut album.
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever, SOUTH MELBOURNE, $16,120
To embark on a nine-show North American tour to begin the market development campaign for their upcoming album, including meetings with their international team and potential future partners.
RVG, PRESTON, $25,000
For RVG to support Melbourne band Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever on a US tour, promoting their upcoming second album and connecting to new markets via interviews and studio performances.
Sound of the Future, BRUNSWICK EAST, $24,000
For the delivery of the Beats Rhymes & Life Mentorship Program, a unique opportunity for six young First Nations hip hop artists in Mooroopna to be mentored in music production, song creation, marketing and music industry decision-making.
Maddie Stephenson, PRESTON, $16,000
For Neo-soul band 30/70 to embark on a 15-date European tour including six festival slots and nine headline shows to solidify and expand on existing European industry networks, and promote their upcoming third album.
Jamie Stroud, BOX HILL NORTH, $13,000
For Stoic Records to record, mix, master and strategically release two 7" records on vinyl, showcasing the works of Yirghilya, Thando and Lauren Brydie.
Sunnyside, MELBOURNE, $9,520
For Melbourne-based instrumental jazz-funk six-piece Sunnyside to perform two sets at Fuji Rock Festival in Japan, coinciding with a run of five regional Japanese shows.
Wrangler Studios, WEST FOOTSCRAY, $9,000
To undertake an evaluation of the organisation's strategies including financial modelling, business development and website development, to be facilitated by Management Governance Australia.
Press Club, COLLINGWOOD, $16,000
For Melbourne band Press Club to tour the UK and Europe in support of their second album release.
Kee'ahn Bindol, ELWOOD, $7,500
Support for Kee'an to record, mix, master and produce an EP of original songs titled Full Bloom.
Meena Shamaly, BLACK ROCK, $9,322
Support for Meena Shamaly to compose, develop, mix and master the soundtrack for upcoming video game Chaos Tavern, totalling around 12 full tracks. The process will include collaborating and recording with a number of First Nations session musicians.