Recent events, such as the January 21 Women’s March, reveal a growing awareness of women as targets of abuse and inequality. As women (and men) rise up to fight these injustices, it is also time for the symphonic world to examine and revise the practices of systematically excluding music composed by women.
We at Women’s Philharmonic Advocacy (WPA) offer our performance grants to help orchestras address this situation and strive for programming that is vital, diverse and inclusive.
Applications are now being accepted for our Spring 2017 Performance Grants, with awards of $500 to $1000 available to all U.S. orchestras. The deadline is March 10 and the application form is available here. Applicants will receive notification of their status on March 31, and checks are mailed to successful applicants within two weeks.
Grants awarded in the Spring 2017 cycle will be for performances from June 1, 2017 to August 31, 2019 — the idea being to allow (and encourage) planning two seasons ahead (even for summer festivals). We plan to continue offering our grants in both the Spring and Fall in order to accommodate the planning processes of more ensembles.
Women’s Philharmonic Advocacy is a non-profit organization founded to continue the legacy of The Women’s Philharmonic (1980-2004). Committed to honoring and advocating for the work of historic and contemporary women composers, our Performance Grants are central to our mission. We promote the performance of unjustly neglected music and encourage orchestras to engage in adventurous and inclusive programming beyond the familiar masterpieces.
All U.S. orchestras – community, professional, and youth – are eligible to receive funding. We suggest that applicants plan to perform more than one work by a woman, and include at least one historic work. Repertoire suggestions are here, including links to music publishers and recordings.
As orchestras strive to invigorate audiences and reinforce the continued relevance and value of the symphonic tradition, WPA hopes to help ensembles broaden their programming and present concerts more reflective of the rich and diverse history of classical music. There are countless underperformed musical treasures deserving to be heard in concert halls.
Find more information and the online application at www.wophil.org/grants. Contact [email protected] with any questions you may have. We look forward to receiving your application, and we wish your orchestra great success in making future discoveries!
In addition to our performance grants, we have another great piece of news! WPA is launching a music publishing project: Women’s Philharmonic Advocacy Publications will help make more music accessible and available through carefully edited and affordable orchestral scores and parts. On our website (under the “Repertoire” link), we are offering performance materials by composers including Amy Beach, Marion Bauer, Rebecca Clarke, and Elfrida Andrée.