two people dancing

Alisdair Macindoe’s Reference Material. Photo: Gregory Lorenzutti

  • aboriginal
  • performing
  • regional

    Part of the Victorian Independent Producers Initiative (VIPI), Unlocking Capacity supports established independent producers in the performing arts to build their skills and practice.

    Unlocking Capacity offers established producers a multi-year grant of up to $35,000 per annum for up to three years to support targeted skills development activities. It aims to enable producers to “unlock” their capacity, build their skills and networks and develop a sustainable practice.

    This program has three streams:

    • First Peoples led stream: Applications by Victorian First Peoples producers will be assessed by a First Peoples assessment panel to ensure Aboriginal self-determination.
    • Deaf and Disabled led stream: Applications by Victorian deaf and disabled producers will be assessed by an assessment panel of creative industries peers with lived experience of deafness and disability.
    • General stream: All other applications will be assessed by a panel made up of a diverse range of industry peers

    Unlocking Capacity is part of the  Victorian Independent Producers Initiative (VIPI), a Victorian Government program run in partnership with Theatre Network Australia.VIPI aims to strengthen the independent performing arts sector by supporting Victorian independent producers and upskilling the artists and organisations who engage their services.

    ** If you have received funding through this program and your project has been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19), please contact program staff listed below. **


    Funding available

    • Up to $35,000 per annum for up to 3 years, per producer


    Who can apply

    Established Victorian-based independent producers of performing arts who have a minimum three years of experience in independent producing.

    At least 50% of your professional time must be dedicated to your independent producing practice and your producing portfolio must comprise of 50% Victorian artists.

    (We are aware that producing practice may have been impacted due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic – please view the FAQs for more information).

    This program encourages applications from producers who identify as First Peoples, Culturally and Linguistically Diverse, people living with a disability and regionally-based producers.


    Key Dates

    Round opens: Thursday 4 November 2021
    Round closes: 3pm, Thursday 25 November 2021

    For activities commencing from 1 March 2022.

    It takes approximately 10 weeks from the closing dates until funding results are available.


    Applications Closed

    Unlocking Capacity applications are submitted via the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions Grants Portal.

    General information on how to access the Grants Portal, including how to register and Grants Portal FAQs, can be found here.

    You will need to determine which stream you are applying to.

    • First Peoples led stream
    • Deaf and Disabled led stream
    • General stream

    If you have already and wish to see saved applications, please click here to return to the Grants Portal.


    Who to talk to

    Before applying, you must contact Theatre Network Australia to discuss your application. Please contact Wen-Juenn Lee on 03 9947 1015 or via email at

    For any technical questions related to the application process or accessing the DJPR Grants Portal, please contact the Arts Development Team via email at


    Links and downloads





    For program FAQs please visit the Theatre Network Australia website.



    • The term First Peoples is used to refer to Traditional Owners of Victoria and all other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who reside in this state.
    • The term Deaf and Disabled people will be used. A lived experience of disability can be visible or invisible, including physical, sensory, cognitive, intellectual, developmental, mental illness and/or neurodiversity. We recognise and support the right of the Deaf community to label their experience as one of cultural and linguistic difference. We recognise the diversity within the Deaf and Disabled communities and that the terminology and language used is evolving.
    • The acronym CALD is used and is inclusive of people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, including but not limited to people born overseas, people with one or both parents born overseas and people who speak a language other than English at home.
    • The term Regional refers to the 48 Victorian local government areas classified as regional by the Victorian State Government. You can find the list of these local government areas here.