Seed Money Grants

The New York Women Composers’ annual Seed Money Grant Program awards grants of $1,000 each for a concert project that includes a substantial commitment to the performance of music by NYWC members. (Note: This is not a commissioning grant.)

Application details are circulated in mid-April each year.

Applicants may be solo performers, ensembles, or presenting organizations. Applicants do not need to be members of New York Women Composers, and the concerts are not required to take place in New York State.

The 2023 Seed Money Grant application period is now closed.

You can find the complete list of 2023 Seed Money Grant recipients here. The 2024 SMG application will be released in Spring 2024.

General Guidelines

For concert grant applications, we offer two possible formats:

1) Focused concert: Presentation of a concert featuring the works of three or more composer-members of New York Women Composers for at least half of the project’s time-length. At least one of the NYWC composers chosen must be new to the performers.

2) Disseminated performances: Performers or ensembles may instead choose to perform works by a minimum of five different NYWC members during their performance season, on two or more concerts. At least two of the NYWC composers must be new to the performers.

Time period for performances: Concerts for this grant period must take place from July 2023 to December 2024.

Choice of music for the concert: The music to be presented must be chosen, at least in part,  from a call for scores circulated to NYWC members on behalf of the grant recipients. We require this in order to let performers explore new composers and new works. Although many composers do list works in the members’ online catalog on NYWC website, please be aware that this list is not complete, so a general score/recording call is required (either physical scores or PDFs) rather than a catalog-only selection. The concert organizers choose the music they wish to play according to their tastes. We ask that composers be consulted during rehearsals either in-person or through email, Zoom or Skype sessions, or other virtual options, and that programs be provided with information on the composers and the pieces, and if vocal music, song texts.

Applicant eligibility: Applicants do not need to be members of New York Women Composers or female, and the concert programs do not need to consist only of works by women composers.

Finances and project completion: Seed Money Grant awards are $1,000. All concert programs and all publicity must acknowledge support from New York Women Composers, Inc. Any financial proceeds from the concert go directly to the organizers, not to New York Women Composers. The selected composers will not be asked to pay any money to the organizers for the performance of their works. New York Women Composers is not responsible for any additional monies needed to complete the projects. A concert program should be shared with NYWC after the concert has taken place, as well as any photos, videos, or musical recordings from the concert. The grant recipients will be asked to fill out a short “Concert Performance Details” form and write a brief testimonial about their grant experience, after which the payment will be provided.

Application deadline and procedures: 2024 Receipt Deadline for grant applications will be announced in Spring 2024. The applicant should submit a brief outline of their proposed project, along with professional biographical and promotional materials, including a headshot, and a sample sound recording. We require electronic submissions so that all of the  jury has immediate access. Applications will be judged by the following criteria:

1) Project visibility

2) Instrumentation (the grant committee tries to balance the variety of instrumentation  receiving awards each year.)

3) Quality of the performers, as evidenced by the selected sample

4) Concert length

5) Performing Rights Organizations licensing coverage for paid-admission concerts

6) Community outreach potential

7) Qualified new applicants will receive preference over those who have previously received New York Women Composers funding. No group or individual performer will be funded in two consecutive years. 

Please note: We encourage anyone not receiving a grant to re-apply, as the needs of the organization, the number of grants that it is possible to award, the instrumentation mix, the conditions of the grant, and the members of the jury change from year to year.

For more information, contact: