Here you'll find the latest UK music opportunities and UK music funding resources that we're aware of, from the British Council and beyond. We update this list as often as we can. Further down, you'll find more information about the key UK music organisations offering funding, support, advice and opportunities for music projects. You can also read below about how we work within the Music team here at the British Council.
Latest UK Music Opportunities
We round up music opportunities from the British Council and beyond. Let us know if there's an opportunity you've seen, or you're involved with, that you think we should share more widely.
You can also try the Arts Opportunities page on the British Council Arts website for various funding options and new opportunities. While these are not all music opportunities, many arts opportunities are open to music creators, organisations or those working across creative disciplines and the list is updated regularly.
Music opportunities from the British Council
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Diaphonique is a bilateral fund for classical contemporary music, supporting collaborative projects between France and the UK which include commissions, concerts, tours, residencies and educative projects.
Deadline 16 May 2021
Music opportunities from around the web
The mission of this programme is to give performers, creators and collaborators the space and technical support to develop new ideas, skills and ways of working that will enable a step change in their career.
Deadline 17 May 2021
Noisy Nights provide an outlet to hear emerging new musical ideas and voices in their new social distanced reality. This time, an opportunity for an emerging or amateur neurodiverse composer interested in writing for Red Note.
Deadline 21 May 2021
In partnership with Noods Radio, Saffron announced a brand new 8-week beginners course in Radio Production & Broadcasting. Taught and mentored by Noods residents Manami and Tilly, the course will provide 8 women and non-binary people in Bristol with the tools, confidence and space to develop their own idea for a radio show.
Deadline 21 May 2021
This only international competition for music theatre and new opera calls creators to submit first productions. Prizewinners will be invited to festivals and venues from partners of the Music Theatre NOW Network.
Deadline 30 June 2021
Advice and support
Many of the pages below provide additional reading and links to further resources you may find useful, even if you are not eligible for a particular scheme.
Help Musicians offer support to musicians at all stages of their career including into retirement. They offer advice and support in various forms and can point you to additional specific resources for UK musicians in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The Musician Union represents over 30,000 musicians, 'working to protect our members' rights and campaign for a fairer music industry.' They run schemes to help members who are struggling and champion causes and campaign such as those to 'make streaming fairer'.
Since 1934 the PRS Members’ Fund has provided support and advice to PRS (Performing Right Society) members and their families, who may be struggling financially, physically or emotionally and are in need of help. The Fund do this directly through provision of grants, information and signposting to other support services, as well as through partner organisations.
The PRS Foundation provides opportunities for UK organisations and music creators to apply for.
Making Music is there to support, advise and provide resources for UK-based amateur and voluntary musicians.
Youth Music work in the UK, a national charity investing in music-making projects for children and young people experiencing challenging circumstances.
The Music Education Yearbook and British & International Music Yearbook (both published by Rhinegold) have information on music scholarships and education grants within the UK and overseas.
British Council Music
The British Council's Music team works to create trust and understanding between the UK and the rest of the world through the medium of music. Working in over 100 countries across the globe, we develop and support music work in a variety of ways including:
- residencies for British musicians so they can experience new cultures and grow their audience
- performance opportunities for musicians overseas
- events that bring musicians of different cultures together to create new work
- industry events to connect professionals around the world and encourage a healthy exchange of ideas
- professional development opportunities.
However, the British Council itself is not a funding body and we cannot respond to ad hoc requests for funding or touring support. We work very closely with other public bodies involved in supporting UK music overseas including Arts Council England, Creative Scotland, Arts Council Wales, Arts Council Northern Ireland and the Department for International Trade and the equivalent bodies in the rest of the UK. Each body has its own purpose and we aim to support and complement each other rather than duplicate. In brief, you could say that the Arts funding bodies' main aim is to develop artists, the trade bodies are more involved in export and the British Council works with market-ready artists and organisations.
You can find out more about how these bodies work alongside each other and what opportunities currently exist for UK music in our report, Going International.
Working with the British Council's Music team
Our specialist music programme managers work closely with colleagues overseas to identify projects which will meet the British Council's strategic priorities in their country, often planning at least a year ahead. If you have been invited to perform overseas and would like to explore the potential for British Council support, we strongly recommend that the overseas partner approaches the local British Council office in the country concerned to discuss the project in general terms with our local Arts team before submitting full details. Also the British artist, ensemble or music company should contact our Arts staff based in London to assess the likelihood of British Council support.