Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment

The Regional Performing Arts Touring program (Playing Australia) supports performing arts to reach regional and remote communities across Australia.

The Regional Performing Arts Touring program (Playing Australia) supports performing arts to reach regional and remote communities across Australia. Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment is offered to support the net touring and other designated costs associated with three years of touring activity (2023 – 2025).

Organisations may apply for up to $350,000 per annum for three years.

Three organisations will receive Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment to be awarded through a peer assessed process.

Based on the proposed audience engagement plans, regional and remote presenters, proposed locations for touring may be either:

  • The same locations for each year of touring
  • A different itinerary for each year

Recipients of Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment will not be eligible to submit applications to Playing Australia Project Investment for tours that take place between 2023 – 2025.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to speak to a member of the Artists Services team before applying.

Please read our updated FAQs at the bottom of this page before commencing your application.

Who can apply

We accept applications from organisations.

Who can’t apply

You can’t apply for a grant if:

  • you receive investment through the National Performing Arts Partnership Framework
  • you received a grant, or administered a grant, from the Australia Council in the past and that grant has not been satisfactorily acquitted
  • you owe money to the Australia Council.

What you can apply for

You can apply for:

  • inter-state touring costs, including freight, transport, accommodation and travel allowances
  • a contribution towards tour coordination, at a set rate per venue
  • costs associated with reducing the environmental impact of touring
  • costs associated with supporting the wellbeing of the touring company
  • a portion of costs associated with re-mounting a work
  • where COVID-19 conditions prevail, costs associated with COVIDSafe delivery of touring.

The Australia Council will continue to take account of the impacts of COVID-19 on touring, including adjusting eligible costs and the possible extension of temporary adjustments depending on the current COVID-19 conditions.

What you can’t apply for

You can’t apply for the following activity:

  • projects for which the performers and artistic personnel are not paid at award rates
  • projects to tour an international production
  • touring projects that only include capital city or metropolitan presentations
  • touring projects that only include presentations in schools
  • tour dates that have already taken place
  • projects with a budget in surplus
  • activities engaging with First Nations content, artists and communities that do not adhere to the Australia Council First Nations Cultural & Intellectual Property Protocols.

Your application must comply with the following Protocols. We may contact you to request further information during the assessment process, or if successful, as a condition of your funding.

Protocols for using First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property in the Arts

All applications involving First Nations artists, communities or subject matter must adhere to these Protocols, provide evidence of this in their application and support material. More information on the First Nations Protocols is available here.

Commonwealth Child Safe Framework

All successful applicants are required to comply with all Australian law relating to employing or engaging people who work or volunteer with children, including working with children checks and mandatory reporting. Successful organisations who provide services directly to children, or whose funded activities involve contact with children, will additionally be required to implement the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.

Your application will be assessed by a panel of peers. The peers will be representative of a range of areas relevant to performing arts touring, including:

  • regional audience engagement and presentation
  • performing arts production
  • tour coordination and management.

Peers will assess your application against the following four criteria.

You should consider COVID-19 in your application where relevant conditions prevail.

Region

  • The regional and remote coverage proposed by the itinerary for the first year of investment. For the 2nd and 3rd years of investment this may be evidenced through existing partnerships and partnerships in development
  • the regional and remote coverage proposed by the itinerary and the flexibility to respond to COVID-19 conditions.

Quality

  • The national touring track record of the applicant
  • the selection rationale for determining which productions are most appropriate for the touring program.
  • the calibre of the organisation, including demonstrated evidence of good planning, governance and management.

If known:

  • the artists and the arts workers involved in the project/s
  • the quality of proposed work/s

Engagement

  • Experiences offered to regional and remote communities – including audience attendance and where appropriate other participation activities, such as workshops and master classes, digital offerings
  • how partnerships will be developed and maintained with presenters and regional communities throughout the three year period.
  • appropriate levels of engagement and partnerships developed with presenters to achieve audience goals within COVID-19 conditions.

Viability

  • Evidence of a realistic and well-planned budget (for 2023 touring)
  • evidence of home state of applicant
  • the proposed itinerary is the most efficient and logical trajectory for the tour and accounts for potentially changing COVID-19 restrictions in each state and territory
  • the itinerary considers the overall wellbeing of the touring party whilst on tour
  • appropriate level of support from other sources
  • capacity to deliver the proposed activity
  • appropriate COVIDSafe protocols in place for touring party, venues and audiences
  • appropriate mitigation strategies if the touring environment changes due to restrictions for COVID-19 within state or territory jurisdictions.

ESSENTIAL:

1. Playing Australia Budget (2023 touring only)

This must be submitted in Excel format only. Download the template in the ‘Budget’ section of the application form. Submit the completed form as support material titled ‘2023 Budget’.

 

OPTIONAL:

1. Production excerpt

You may submit a video of up to five minutes of a production you plan to tour. For companies proposing to tour works yet to be produced, a video of a past example of the company’s work should be submitted. For music works, a sound recording is acceptable. Files must be provided as one URL link.

2. Letters of Support

Individuals, groups or organisations can write letters in support of your project. Presenters and venues may also wish to provide letters of support reflecting their commitment to the tour. A support letter should explain to the assessment panel how the project or activity will benefit the applicant or the broader community (and if applicable, how the project or activity will benefit community participants).

If relevant to your activity, letters of support must provide evidence of appropriate permissions and support from First Nations organisations, communities, and Elders. Please refer to the First Nations Protocols for more information.

You can include up to five letters of support, with each letter not exceeding one A4 page. Maximum 5 pages may be submitted as one PDF.

3. Reviews relating to the production (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages may be submitted as one PDF.

4. Brief biographical information on principal personnel (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages as one PDF.

Whilst this material is not compulsory, you are advised to consider providing any relevant items, to support the overall competitiveness of your application.

Please note: you are not required to supply Presenter Confirmations as essential support material but should consider supplying letters of support from selected presenters/communities to support your application.

Additional information

Once you submit your application, we will send you an email acknowledging receipt of your application.

After you submit your application, we first check it meets the eligibility criteria for the grant or opportunity to which you are applying.

Applications to the Australia Council Grant Programs are assessed by arts practice peer panels against the published assessment criteria for the relevant grant program.

We aim to notify you of the outcome of your application no later than 12 weeks after the published closing date for the applicable grant round.

Once all applications have been assessed, you will be contacted about the outcome of your application. If you have been successful, you will also be sent a funding agreement. This outlines the conditions of funding, how you will be paid and your grant reporting requirements. The following accordion items outline these stages in more detail.

If your application is successful, you will receive an email advising you a grant is offered. You must then agree to the conditions of your grant, which represents the Australia Council’s contract with you – this can be done online, by email or by letter. Payment of a grant will not be made until the grant conditions have been agreed and accepted by all the relevant parties.

You should not start a project that depends on a grant until all relevant parties have agreed and accepted the grant conditions and we have evidence of such acceptance on file.

Standard grant conditions require you to, among other things:

  • seek prior approval for making a change to a funded project (for example, changes in the activity budget; changes to key creative personnel; or changes to start or end dates)
  • respond to requests for information about the project or grant
  • satisfactorily account for how the grant is spent (if you do not you will be required to return all monies for which you cannot satisfactorily account)
  • comply with all applicable laws
  • acknowledge the Australia Council’s support in all promotional material associated with the project; this includes use of the Australia Council’s logo and a standard text of acknowledgement.
  • provide artistic and financial acquittal reports at the end of the project
  • return any unspent grant funds at the completion of your project or on notice from us to return such unspent funds.

Grant agreements must be signed by a legal entity – either a legally constituted organisation or an individual. For unincorporated groups, see the section on administered grants

All individual or organisation grant applicants based in Australia must have an ABN. Individual applicants without an ABN may have their grant administered by an individual or organisation with an ABN. Organisations operating outside of Australia do not need an ABN to apply. Individuals based outside of Australia may not need an ABN to apply, depending on their circumstances (please check with your accountant or tax advisor).

The name of the applicant must match the name of the ABN and the name of the bank account into which we pay the funds. There are no exceptions to this rule. If applicants cannot provide an ABN and bank account that are in the same name as the applicant’s name, they will need to nominate an administrator for their grant.

Groups/ensembles/collectives, unincorporated associations/ unincorporated entities and other bodies with no legal status do not need an administrator if they have an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and bank account in their name. If they are unable to provide an active ABN and bank account that matches the name of the applicant, they must nominate an administrator. The name of the administrator must match the name of the ABN and bank account into which funds are paid if the application is successful.

If we approve your application you will need accept the conditions of the grant in a funding agreement.

After you accept your funding agreement online, we will automatically generate a payment for the grant on your behalf. You do not need to send us an invoice.

We will pay grant funds directly into your nominated bank account within two weeks after acceptance of the funding agreement. Grant payments cannot be postponed.

If you do not wish to have the grant funds paid directly into your bank account you can choose to have your grant administered by another individual or legally constituted organisation (Doesn’t apply to Arts Projects – Organisations).

When you apply, you will be asked to provide an active Australian Business Number or ‘ABN’. The ABN that you provide must correspond to the name of the applicant (or the administering body, if one has been nominated). When you accept your funding agreement, you will be asked to enter the details of the bank account you wish the grant to be paid into. The name associated with that bank account must correspond to the name in which the ABN has been registered.

Download the Australia Council for the Arts logo guidelines here.

Download the Major Festivals Initiative logo guidelines here.

Grant reports are required on completion of your project. Acquitting a grant means accurately reporting on the funded activities and the expenditure of Australia Council funding.

Please read your funding agreement to check details of the grant acquittal material you should provide.

The grant acquittal report is where you tell us:

  • how you spent your grant
  • what the artistic outcomes of your funded activity were.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report at the times and in the manner detailed in your funding agreement, the Australia Council will not make any further payments that may be due to you, and you will not be eligible  to apply for further grants.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report, the Australia Council may ask you to pay back all or part of the funding provided to you.

Grant reports are used by the Australia Council to fulfil obligations of accountability to the Australian Government. They are also essential to the development work of the Australia Council. The reports help us evaluate the achievements of funded activities, monitor the effectiveness of grant categories and ensure our policy development is consistent with the experience of artists in the field.

Reporting for Multi-year Funded Organisations

Organisations in receipt of multi-year funding are required to submit financial, statistical, and artistic reporting on an annual basis.

All reporting is submitted online via the Australia Council’s arts organisations reporting system.

If you are not sure what reporting you need to submit as part of your annual reporting, or what information to provide, please get in touch with your Australia Council contact.

All recipients must acknowledge that the Australia Council provided funding for their activities. When you acquit your grant, we will ask you how you acknowledged the Australia Council.

For printed or online material use our logo and this phrase:

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body OR The (company name) is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Logos for download and guidelines for the use of our logos.

Where projects do not have a public outcome, or do not produce any printed or online material, you will need to think about how best to acknowledge the Australia Council funding.

Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment FAQ’s

Under this fund a national tour is three or more locations outside of your home state. A break in the middle of a consecutive schedule of locations is possible if there is a compelling reason and the impact on the funding request is minimal. 

A professional production is one where the performers and artistic personnel are paid at the appropriate recognised industry level.

To be eligible for this investment, the work/s needs to be produced by an Australian company or produced by an artist or collective of artists who are Australian citizens or have permanent resident status in Australia. The content of the work, the writer, composer or choreographer are not required to be Australian. An eligible work could also include a percentage of international performers as part of an Australian co-production.

We welcome national touring applications from all forms of professionally produced live performance across theatre, dance and music.

The Australia Council also offers the Contemporary Music Touring Program. If you are interested in touring music nationally please contact an Artists Services Officer to determine which category is most suitable for your tour.

This Australia Council, as do many government departments and agencies, uses the ARIA (Accessibility Remoteness Index of Australia) to determine the regional and remote classification for each town. The ARIA considers a range of factors, including distance to services, to group all locations in Australia into 5 ARIA Code areas. To find out if your project meets the eligible criteria (i.e. inclusion of venues with an ARIA rating of 1-4) and search for the relevant ARIA codes, please download this form.

Yes, provided you meet the eligibility requirement of including regional and or remote locations in your itinerary. Please note there is no quota or ratio required for regional and remote versus metropolitan locations. However, applicants must note that the purpose of the program is to support regional and remote access.

Yes, your itinerary can include activities that offer additional opportunities for the community to engage with the performers or art, which reflect the engagement strategy provided in your application. As the focus of this fund is performances, additional activities should be scheduled in an efficient way within the itinerary.

Depending on prevailing COVID-19 conditions  engagement strategies should consider COVIDSafe delivery requirements.

  • interstate net touring costs and tour coordination fees. Applicants should research the net touring costs based on current prices and add a reasonable contingency to each item
  • budgets may include a portion of costs associated with a remount of an existing production. In your application and budget please ensure you clearly outline the costs involved, ensuring they are eligible.
  • Where appropriate, please show how presenter fees have been reduced to provide them with relief on this expense. Be sure to show what costs the presenter will be liable for (this could include venue costs, marketing, a proportion of wages for the touring party, and any in-kind costs).
  • carbon offsets or other similar programs to reduce carbon emissions, or other activity which reduces the environmental impact of the tour
  • wellbeing programs (i.e. Employment Assistance Programs) or other activity which provides support for the company whilst on tour.

Depending on prevailing COVID-19 conditions applicants may request a contribution towards for costs associated with CovidSafe delivery of touring:

  • additional cleaning costs
  • touring costs for understudies or additional crew in the touring party (travel, accommodation, allowances) to mitigate against risk of illness within the touring party
  • costs for Personal Protective Equipment or other safety equipment.
  • accommodation, travel fares and transport costs for the touring party
  • relevant industrial award rates for travel allowances for the touring party
  • freight costs for the set and production elements.

The ‘touring party’ is defined as the performers, crew and other personnel required to stage the show.  In the application outline the members of your touring party.

This fund provides support to cover travel allowances at the rate set by the appropriate industry award plus contingency for scheduled increases. Productions that pay above the award rate or have their own certified agreement will need to find alternative sources to cover the difference.

The tour coordination fees support the cost of managing the tour logistics and travel bookings, providing a contribution towards those costs at a set rate of $550 per venue. The rate is automatically provided in the budget form and applicants are eligible to receive the tour coordination fee for venues outside of their home state.

You are required to provide a budget and itinerary for the first year of touring (2023). If you are successful in receiving Playing Australia Multi Year Investment you will be required to submit annually, a budget and itinerary for the following year (for 2024 – 2025). This material will be reviewed for eligibility based on the published guidelines and criteria, before the next instalment of investment is paid.

You may carry forward unspent funds into 2024 and 2025, though at the conclusion of the project and following the final acquittal, you will be required to return any unspent funds.

Some projects might have performers based in various states or perhaps the tour is managed by a tour coordinator from a different state or territory. For the purposes of this fund one ‘home state’ needs to be nominated to calculate the interstate versus intrastate costs. Generally, the ‘home state’ will be the street address of the production company. However, all applicants with different state or territory involvement should discuss with an Artists Services Officer to confirm the appropriate ‘home’ base for their application.

Depending on prevailing COVID-19 conditions, shorter tours which target a particular state or region are appropriate. In your application you should address the overall rationale of your tour itinerary in the context of COVID-19. Tours must still include 3 or more venues, including locations outside of metropolitan areas.

We will continue to work with clients whose touring activity is impacted by COVID-19 on an individual basis.

Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment

The Regional Performing Arts Touring program (Playing Australia) supports performing arts to reach regional and remote communities across Australia.

The Regional Performing Arts Touring program (Playing Australia) supports performing arts to reach regional and remote communities across Australia. Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment is offered to support the net touring and other designated costs associated with three years of touring activity (2023 – 2025).

Organisations may apply for up to $350,000 per annum for three years.

Three organisations will receive Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment to be awarded through a peer assessed process.

Based on the proposed audience engagement plans, regional and remote presenters, proposed locations for touring may be either:

  • The same locations for each year of touring
  • A different itinerary for each year

Recipients of Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment will not be eligible to submit applications to Playing Australia Project Investment for tours that take place between 2023 – 2025.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to speak to a member of the Artists Services team before applying.

Please read our updated FAQs at the bottom of this page before commencing your application.

Who can apply

We accept applications from organisations.

Who can’t apply

You can’t apply for a grant if:

  • you receive investment through the National Performing Arts Partnership Framework
  • you received a grant, or administered a grant, from the Australia Council in the past and that grant has not been satisfactorily acquitted
  • you owe money to the Australia Council.

What you can apply for

You can apply for:

  • inter-state touring costs, including freight, transport, accommodation and travel allowances
  • a contribution towards tour coordination, at a set rate per venue
  • costs associated with reducing the environmental impact of touring
  • costs associated with supporting the wellbeing of the touring company
  • a portion of costs associated with re-mounting a work
  • where COVID-19 conditions prevail, costs associated with COVIDSafe delivery of touring.

The Australia Council will continue to take account of the impacts of COVID-19 on touring, including adjusting eligible costs and the possible extension of temporary adjustments depending on the current COVID-19 conditions.

What you can’t apply for

You can’t apply for the following activity:

  • projects for which the performers and artistic personnel are not paid at award rates
  • projects to tour an international production
  • touring projects that only include capital city or metropolitan presentations
  • touring projects that only include presentations in schools
  • tour dates that have already taken place
  • projects with a budget in surplus
  • activities engaging with First Nations content, artists and communities that do not adhere to the Australia Council First Nations Cultural & Intellectual Property Protocols.

Your application must comply with the following Protocols. We may contact you to request further information during the assessment process, or if successful, as a condition of your funding.

Protocols for using First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property in the Arts

All applications involving First Nations artists, communities or subject matter must adhere to these Protocols, provide evidence of this in their application and support material. More information on the First Nations Protocols is available here.

Commonwealth Child Safe Framework

All successful applicants are required to comply with all Australian law relating to employing or engaging people who work or volunteer with children, including working with children checks and mandatory reporting. Successful organisations who provide services directly to children, or whose funded activities involve contact with children, will additionally be required to implement the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.

Your application will be assessed by a panel of peers. The peers will be representative of a range of areas relevant to performing arts touring, including:

  • regional audience engagement and presentation
  • performing arts production
  • tour coordination and management.

Peers will assess your application against the following four criteria.

You should consider COVID-19 in your application where relevant conditions prevail.

Region

  • The regional and remote coverage proposed by the itinerary for the first year of investment. For the 2nd and 3rd years of investment this may be evidenced through existing partnerships and partnerships in development
  • the regional and remote coverage proposed by the itinerary and the flexibility to respond to COVID-19 conditions.

Quality

  • The national touring track record of the applicant
  • the selection rationale for determining which productions are most appropriate for the touring program.
  • the calibre of the organisation, including demonstrated evidence of good planning, governance and management.

If known:

  • the artists and the arts workers involved in the project/s
  • the quality of proposed work/s

Engagement

  • Experiences offered to regional and remote communities – including audience attendance and where appropriate other participation activities, such as workshops and master classes, digital offerings
  • how partnerships will be developed and maintained with presenters and regional communities throughout the three year period.
  • appropriate levels of engagement and partnerships developed with presenters to achieve audience goals within COVID-19 conditions.

Viability

  • Evidence of a realistic and well-planned budget (for 2023 touring)
  • evidence of home state of applicant
  • the proposed itinerary is the most efficient and logical trajectory for the tour and accounts for potentially changing COVID-19 restrictions in each state and territory
  • the itinerary considers the overall wellbeing of the touring party whilst on tour
  • appropriate level of support from other sources
  • capacity to deliver the proposed activity
  • appropriate COVIDSafe protocols in place for touring party, venues and audiences
  • appropriate mitigation strategies if the touring environment changes due to restrictions for COVID-19 within state or territory jurisdictions.

ESSENTIAL:

1. Playing Australia Budget (2023 touring only)

This must be submitted in Excel format only. Download the template in the ‘Budget’ section of the application form. Submit the completed form as support material titled ‘2023 Budget’.

 

OPTIONAL:

1. Production excerpt

You may submit a video of up to five minutes of a production you plan to tour. For companies proposing to tour works yet to be produced, a video of a past example of the company’s work should be submitted. For music works, a sound recording is acceptable. Files must be provided as one URL link.

2. Letters of Support

Individuals, groups or organisations can write letters in support of your project. Presenters and venues may also wish to provide letters of support reflecting their commitment to the tour. A support letter should explain to the assessment panel how the project or activity will benefit the applicant or the broader community (and if applicable, how the project or activity will benefit community participants).

If relevant to your activity, letters of support must provide evidence of appropriate permissions and support from First Nations organisations, communities, and Elders. Please refer to the First Nations Protocols for more information.

You can include up to five letters of support, with each letter not exceeding one A4 page. Maximum 5 pages may be submitted as one PDF.

3. Reviews relating to the production (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages may be submitted as one PDF.

4. Brief biographical information on principal personnel (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages as one PDF.

Whilst this material is not compulsory, you are advised to consider providing any relevant items, to support the overall competitiveness of your application.

Please note: you are not required to supply Presenter Confirmations as essential support material but should consider supplying letters of support from selected presenters/communities to support your application.

Additional information

Once you submit your application, we will send you an email acknowledging receipt of your application.

After you submit your application, we first check it meets the eligibility criteria for the grant or opportunity to which you are applying.

Applications to the Australia Council Grant Programs are assessed by arts practice peer panels against the published assessment criteria for the relevant grant program.

We aim to notify you of the outcome of your application no later than 12 weeks after the published closing date for the applicable grant round.

Once all applications have been assessed, you will be contacted about the outcome of your application. If you have been successful, you will also be sent a funding agreement. This outlines the conditions of funding, how you will be paid and your grant reporting requirements. The following accordion items outline these stages in more detail.

If your application is successful, you will receive an email advising you a grant is offered. You must then agree to the conditions of your grant, which represents the Australia Council’s contract with you – this can be done online, by email or by letter. Payment of a grant will not be made until the grant conditions have been agreed and accepted by all the relevant parties.

You should not start a project that depends on a grant until all relevant parties have agreed and accepted the grant conditions and we have evidence of such acceptance on file.

Standard grant conditions require you to, among other things:

  • seek prior approval for making a change to a funded project (for example, changes in the activity budget; changes to key creative personnel; or changes to start or end dates)
  • respond to requests for information about the project or grant
  • satisfactorily account for how the grant is spent (if you do not you will be required to return all monies for which you cannot satisfactorily account)
  • comply with all applicable laws
  • acknowledge the Australia Council’s support in all promotional material associated with the project; this includes use of the Australia Council’s logo and a standard text of acknowledgement.
  • provide artistic and financial acquittal reports at the end of the project
  • return any unspent grant funds at the completion of your project or on notice from us to return such unspent funds.

Grant agreements must be signed by a legal entity – either a legally constituted organisation or an individual. For unincorporated groups, see the section on administered grants

All individual or organisation grant applicants based in Australia must have an ABN. Individual applicants without an ABN may have their grant administered by an individual or organisation with an ABN. Organisations operating outside of Australia do not need an ABN to apply. Individuals based outside of Australia may not need an ABN to apply, depending on their circumstances (please check with your accountant or tax advisor).

The name of the applicant must match the name of the ABN and the name of the bank account into which we pay the funds. There are no exceptions to this rule. If applicants cannot provide an ABN and bank account that are in the same name as the applicant’s name, they will need to nominate an administrator for their grant.

Groups/ensembles/collectives, unincorporated associations/ unincorporated entities and other bodies with no legal status do not need an administrator if they have an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and bank account in their name. If they are unable to provide an active ABN and bank account that matches the name of the applicant, they must nominate an administrator. The name of the administrator must match the name of the ABN and bank account into which funds are paid if the application is successful.

If we approve your application you will need accept the conditions of the grant in a funding agreement.

After you accept your funding agreement online, we will automatically generate a payment for the grant on your behalf. You do not need to send us an invoice.

We will pay grant funds directly into your nominated bank account within two weeks after acceptance of the funding agreement. Grant payments cannot be postponed.

If you do not wish to have the grant funds paid directly into your bank account you can choose to have your grant administered by another individual or legally constituted organisation (Doesn’t apply to Arts Projects – Organisations).

When you apply, you will be asked to provide an active Australian Business Number or ‘ABN’. The ABN that you provide must correspond to the name of the applicant (or the administering body, if one has been nominated). When you accept your funding agreement, you will be asked to enter the details of the bank account you wish the grant to be paid into. The name associated with that bank account must correspond to the name in which the ABN has been registered.

Download the Australia Council for the Arts logo guidelines here.

Download the Major Festivals Initiative logo guidelines here.

Grant reports are required on completion of your project. Acquitting a grant means accurately reporting on the funded activities and the expenditure of Australia Council funding.

Please read your funding agreement to check details of the grant acquittal material you should provide.

The grant acquittal report is where you tell us:

  • how you spent your grant
  • what the artistic outcomes of your funded activity were.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report at the times and in the manner detailed in your funding agreement, the Australia Council will not make any further payments that may be due to you, and you will not be eligible  to apply for further grants.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report, the Australia Council may ask you to pay back all or part of the funding provided to you.

Grant reports are used by the Australia Council to fulfil obligations of accountability to the Australian Government. They are also essential to the development work of the Australia Council. The reports help us evaluate the achievements of funded activities, monitor the effectiveness of grant categories and ensure our policy development is consistent with the experience of artists in the field.

Reporting for Multi-year Funded Organisations

Organisations in receipt of multi-year funding are required to submit financial, statistical, and artistic reporting on an annual basis.

All reporting is submitted online via the Australia Council’s arts organisations reporting system.

If you are not sure what reporting you need to submit as part of your annual reporting, or what information to provide, please get in touch with your Australia Council contact.

All recipients must acknowledge that the Australia Council provided funding for their activities. When you acquit your grant, we will ask you how you acknowledged the Australia Council.

For printed or online material use our logo and this phrase:

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body OR The (company name) is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Logos for download and guidelines for the use of our logos.

Where projects do not have a public outcome, or do not produce any printed or online material, you will need to think about how best to acknowledge the Australia Council funding.

Playing Australia Project Investment

Playing Australia Project Investment supports performing arts tours to reach regional and remote communities across Australia.

Alphabetical Sydney: All Aboard!. Image credit: Robert Catto.

 About the program

Playing Australia Project Investment supports performing arts tours to reach regional and remote communities across Australia.

The program supports net touring costs and other designated costs associated with tours. There is no limit on the amount that can be requested.

Changes to Playing Australia Project Investment

Please note there have been changes recently introduced which may alter your approach to applying for Playing Australia Project Investment.

These changes give you the opportunity to:

  • present a proposed tour with an unconfirmed itinerary
  • propose an alternative touring model such as a residency model with live performance outcomes
  • present a tour that includes significant and targeted community engagement
  • present an annual touring program for single or multiple works
  • propose a digital tour.

Please read our updated FAQs at the bottom of this page before commencing your application.

Please speak to a member of the Artists Services team before applying.

Who can apply

Individuals and organisations may apply.

Who can’t apply

You can’t apply for a grant if:

  • you have an overdue grant report
  • you are in receipt of Playing Australia Multi-Year Investment.

What you can apply for

You can apply for:

  • a reasonable portion of costs associated with re-mounting a work
  • inter-state touring costs including freight, transport, accommodation and travel allowances
  • a contribution towards tour coordination at a set rate per venue
  • a portion of costs associated with reducing the environmental impact of your tour
  • a portion of costs associated with supporting the wellbeing of the touring company

Portions of relevant costs noted above must be reasonable.

What you can’t apply for

You can’t apply for:

  • touring costs within the production’s home state including freight, transport, accommodation, and travel allowances
  • touring projects that do not include three or more interstate locations
  • tours for which the performers and artistic personnel are not paid at award rates
  • tours of an international production
  • tours that only include capital city or metropolitan presentations
  • tours that only include presentations in schools
  • tours that have already taken place
  • tours that show a budget surplus
  • activities engaging with First Nations content, artists and communities that do not adhere to the Australia Council First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property Protocols.

Your application must comply with the following protocols. We may contact you to request further information during the assessment process, or if successful, as a condition of your funding.

  • Protocols for using First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property in the ArtsAll applications involving First Nations artists, communities or subject matter must adhere to these Protocols, provide evidence of this in their application and support material. More information on the First Nations Protocols is available here.
  • Commonwealth Child Safe FrameworkAll successful applicants are required to comply with all Australian law relating to employing or engaging people who work or volunteer with children, including working with children checks and mandatory reporting. Successful organisations who provide services directly to children, or whose funded activities involve contact with children, will additionally be required to implement the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.

Your application will be assessed by a panel of peers. The peers will be representative of a range of areas relevant to performing arts touring, including:

  • regional audience engagement and presentation
  • performing arts production
  • tour coordination and management.
Read more about peer assessment

Peers will assess your application against the following four criteria:

Region

  • The regional and remote coverage or depth of engagement proposed by the itinerary considering any extenuating disruptions to the usual operating environment (e.g. effects of natural disasters or significant impacts due to inflation)
  • Where your itinerary is unconfirmed, you should provide evidence of your relationships and conversations with proposed presenting partners and communities to support the regional coverage of your proposed tour.

Quality

  • The quality of the artists and the arts workers involved in the project.
  • The quality of proposed work.
  • The quality of proposed impact for local artists or communities where touring models, such as a residency model with live performance outcomes; or tours where significant and targeted community engagement are proposed.
  • The calibre of the individual or organisation, including demonstrated evidence of good planning, governance and management.

Engagement

  • Evidence of significant experiences offered to regional and remote communities, including audience attendance and participation, workshops, master classes and online/digital offerings.
  • Evidence of significant community engagement. And relationships with presenter, where alternative touring model such as a residency model with live performance outcomes; or tours where significant and targeted community are proposed.

Viability

  • Evidence the budget is realistic and well-planned and considers potential impact for inflation on touring costs
  • Evidence of the home state of the proposed work.
  • Evidence that the itinerary is the most efficient and logical trajectory for the tour.
  • Evidence that the tour considers the overall health and well-being of the touring party.
  • Where relevant, evidence of an environmental impact plan which may include cost benefits.
  • Appropriate levels of support from other sources.
  • Capacity to deliver the tour.
  • Contingency planning and mitigation strategies (eg cancellations due to natural disaster; significant illness within touring company).

ESSENTIAL:

  1. Playing Australia Budget

This must be submitted in Excel format only. Download the template in the ‘Budget’ section of the application form. Submit the completed form as support material titled ‘Budget form’.

OPTIONAL:

  1. Production excerpt
    You may submit a video of up to five minutes of the production you plan to tour. For companies proposing to tour works yet to be produced, a video of a past example of the company’s work should be submitted. For music works, a sound recording is acceptable. Files must be provided as a URL link.Provide only one video URL link with your online application.
  2. Letters of Support

Individuals, groups or organisations can write letters in support of your project. Presenters and venues may also wish to provide letters of support reflecting their commitment to the tour. A support letter should explain to the assessment panel how the project or activity will benefit the applicant or the broader community (and if applicable, how the project or activity will benefit community participants).

If relevant to your activity, letters of support must provide evidence of appropriate permissions and support from First Nations organisations, communities, and Elders. Please refer to the First Nations Protocols for more information.You can include up to five letters of support, with each letter not exceeding one A4 page. Maximum 5 pages submitted as one PDF.

  1. Reviews relating to the production (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages submitted as one PDF.

  1. Brief biographical information on principal personnel (if applicable)

Maximum 3 pages as one PDF.

You can find a list of the previous recipients here.

You can find a list of the previous recipients here.

 

Additional information

Once you submit your application, we will send you an email acknowledging receipt of your application.

After you submit your application, we first check it meets the eligibility criteria for the grant or opportunity to which you are applying.

Applications to the Australia Council Grant Programs are assessed by arts practice peer panels against the published assessment criteria for the relevant grant program.

We aim to notify you of the outcome of your application no later than 12 weeks after the published closing date for the applicable grant round.

Once all applications have been assessed, you will be contacted about the outcome of your application. If you have been successful, you will also be sent a funding agreement. This outlines the conditions of funding, how you will be paid and your grant reporting requirements. The following accordion items outline these stages in more detail.

If your application is successful, you will receive an email advising you a grant is offered. You must then agree to the conditions of your grant, which represents the Australia Council’s contract with you – this can be done online, by email or by letter. Payment of a grant will not be made until the grant conditions have been agreed and accepted by all the relevant parties.

You should not start a project that depends on a grant until all relevant parties have agreed and accepted the grant conditions and we have evidence of such acceptance on file.

Standard grant conditions require you to, among other things:

  • seek prior approval for making a change to a funded project (for example, changes in the activity budget; changes to key creative personnel; or changes to start or end dates)
  • respond to requests for information about the project or grant
  • satisfactorily account for how the grant is spent (if you do not you will be required to return all monies for which you cannot satisfactorily account)
  • comply with all applicable laws
  • acknowledge the Australia Council’s support in all promotional material associated with the project; this includes use of the Australia Council’s logo and a standard text of acknowledgement.
  • provide artistic and financial acquittal reports at the end of the project
  • return any unspent grant funds at the completion of your project or on notice from us to return such unspent funds.

Grant agreements must be signed by a legal entity – either a legally constituted organisation or an individual. For unincorporated groups, see the section on administered grants

All individual or organisation grant applicants based in Australia must have an ABN. Individual applicants without an ABN may have their grant administered by an individual or organisation with an ABN. Organisations operating outside of Australia do not need an ABN to apply. Individuals based outside of Australia may not need an ABN to apply, depending on their circumstances (please check with your accountant or tax advisor).

The name of the applicant must match the name of the ABN and the name of the bank account into which we pay the funds. There are no exceptions to this rule. If applicants cannot provide an ABN and bank account that are in the same name as the applicant’s name, they will need to nominate an administrator for their grant.

Groups/ensembles/collectives, unincorporated associations/ unincorporated entities and other bodies with no legal status do not need an administrator if they have an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and bank account in their name. If they are unable to provide an active ABN and bank account that matches the name of the applicant, they must nominate an administrator. The name of the administrator must match the name of the ABN and bank account into which funds are paid if the application is successful.

If we approve your application you will need accept the conditions of the grant in a funding agreement.

After you accept your funding agreement online, we will automatically generate a payment for the grant on your behalf. You do not need to send us an invoice.

We will pay grant funds directly into your nominated bank account within two weeks after acceptance of the funding agreement. Grant payments cannot be postponed.

If you do not wish to have the grant funds paid directly into your bank account you can choose to have your grant administered by another individual or legally constituted organisation (Doesn’t apply to Arts Projects – Organisations).

When you apply, you will be asked to provide an active Australian Business Number or ‘ABN’. The ABN that you provide must correspond to the name of the applicant (or the administering body, if one has been nominated). When you accept your funding agreement, you will be asked to enter the details of the bank account you wish the grant to be paid into. The name associated with that bank account must correspond to the name in which the ABN has been registered.

Download the Australia Council for the Arts logo guidelines here.

Download the Major Festivals Initiative logo guidelines here.

Grant reports are required on completion of your project. Acquitting a grant means accurately reporting on the funded activities and the expenditure of Australia Council funding.

Please read your funding agreement to check details of the grant acquittal material you should provide.

The grant acquittal report is where you tell us:

  • how you spent your grant
  • what the artistic outcomes of your funded activity were.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report at the times and in the manner detailed in your funding agreement, the Australia Council will not make any further payments that may be due to you, and you will not be eligible  to apply for further grants.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report, the Australia Council may ask you to pay back all or part of the funding provided to you.

Grant reports are used by the Australia Council to fulfil obligations of accountability to the Australian Government. They are also essential to the development work of the Australia Council. The reports help us evaluate the achievements of funded activities, monitor the effectiveness of grant categories and ensure our policy development is consistent with the experience of artists in the field.

Reporting for Multi-year Funded Organisations

Organisations in receipt of multi-year funding are required to submit financial, statistical, and artistic reporting on an annual basis.

All reporting is submitted online via the Australia Council’s arts organisations reporting system.

If you are not sure what reporting you need to submit as part of your annual reporting, or what information to provide, please get in touch with your Australia Council contact.

All recipients must acknowledge that the Australia Council provided funding for their activities. When you acquit your grant, we will ask you how you acknowledged the Australia Council.

For printed or online material use our logo and this phrase:

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body OR The (company name) is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Logos for download and guidelines for the use of our logos.

Where projects do not have a public outcome, or do not produce any printed or online material, you will need to think about how best to acknowledge the Australia Council funding.

Playing Australia FAQs

In this category a national tour is three or more locations outside of the home state of the proposed work. The itinerary must include regional or remote locations.

This Australia Council for the Arts uses the Accessibility Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA) to determine the regional and remote classification for each town. The ARIA considers a range of factors, including distance to services, to group all locations in Australia into 5 ARIA Code areas. To find out if your project meets the eligible criteria (i.e. inclusion of venues with an ARIA rating of 1-4) and search for the relevant ARIA codes, please download this form.

Yes, you can include metropolitan locations provided you meet the eligibility requirement of including regional and or remote locations in your itinerary. There is no quota or ratio required for regional and remote versus metropolitan locations. However,  the purpose of the program is to support regional and remote touring.

The ‘home state’ of the work is the state in which the work was originally created or produced, or where most of the artists involved are based. Some projects might have performers based in various states or engage a tour coordinator from a different state or territory. For the purposes of this fund the ‘home state’ of the proposed work should be nominated to calculate the interstate versus intrastate costs. Please discuss your proposal with an Artists Services Officer if you are unsure about the appropriate ‘home state’ for your application.

The Australia Council encourages applicants to propose alternative models of regional and remote touring (as a response to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic).

Itineraries may reflect concepts including residency models with a live performance outcome, or tours that place community engagement and participation as a central part of the development and touring process.

Proposals may include activity where a work is developed or re-staged with local artists or community through a residency process with visiting artists; or hybrid models which enable artistic collaboration across regions. There must be a live performance outcome as a result of the residency or collaboration. You may require additional funding sources in order to make such a model viable.

Where relevant, tours may include a period of development working with identified local communities prior to the presentation of a touring work.

Community engagement strategies should reflect your process. You are encouraged to supply letters of support from key community members which support this process.

In touring digital presentations, applicants may seek funding for any eligible Playing Australia costs (for example, technicians’ travel and accommodation to bump in/bump out, or freight for equipment). A digital tour may be presented in conjunction with, or independent to, a live performance tour.

Applications reflecting alternative touring models must consider the four assessment criteria:  Region, Quality, Engagement, Viability and respond within the application as appropriate.

Yes, annual programs of touring are eligible. A proposal can identify blocks of touring across the year for the same work or for a suite of works. Your application should reflect a logical itinerary and viable budget, providing clear context for your planning.

Shorter touring blocks are a valid response when considering the mental health and wellbeing of artists engaged on extended tours.

Yes. Tours may engage dual casts or crew to support the overall health and wellbeing of the company undertaking an extended tour; for annual touring programs, and for companies who have specific support needs. Your application should reflect a viable budget to support this approach and provide clear context for your planning.

A professional production is one for which the performers and artistic personnel are paid at the appropriate recognised industry level.

To be eligible for this investment, the work/s needs to be produced by an Australian company or produced by an artist or collective of artists who are Australian citizens or have permanent resident status in Australia. The content of the work, the writer, composer or choreographer are not required to be Australian. An eligible work could also include a percentage of international performers as part of an Australian co-production.

Yes. Your itinerary can include activities that offer additional opportunities for the community to engage with the touring party or work, which reflect the engagement strategy provided in your application. As the focus of this fund is live performance, additional activities should be scheduled in an efficient way within the itinerary.

You can use the investment for any of the following:

  • A reasonable portion of costs associated with remounting a work. In your application and budget please ensure you clearly outline these costs. You should provide a viable budget and convincing rationale for the remount costs, including any impact on presenter fees.
  • Interstate net touring costs. Base these on current prices and add a reasonable contingency to each item.
  • Tour coordination fees, which are set at a fixed rate of $550 per venue.
  • Activities which reduce the environmental impact of the tour. Your application should reflect a viable budget to support this approach and provide clear context for your planning, which may include a cost benefit analysis.
  • Wellbeing programs (for example, employment assistance programs) or other activities which provide support for the touring party whilst on tour.

Yes, you may request costs to support accessibility needs for your tour. These may be for members of the touring party (e.g. costs associated with travel requirements) or for presenters (e.g. Auslan or Audio Description services), If requesting access costs, please provide explanatory notes in the application form as to what you are seeking costs for. Please speak to a member of the Artists Services team if you would like further advice.

  • accommodation, travel fares and transport costs for the touring party
  • relevant industrial award rates for travel allowances for the touring party
  • freight costs for the set and production elements.

The touring party is defined as the performers, crew and other personnel required to deliver the work. In the application outline the members of your touring party.

This fund provides support to cover travel allowances at the rate set by the appropriate industry award plus contingency for scheduled increases. Productions that pay above the award rate or have their own certified agreement will need to find alternative sources to cover the difference.

The tour coordination fees support the cost of managing the tour logistics and travel bookings, providing a contribution towards those costs at a set rate of $550 per venue. The rate is automatically provided in the budget form. Applicants are only eligible to receive the tour coordination fee for venues outside of the home state of the proposed work.

No. You may apply for a proposed tour with an unconfirmed itinerary. If you chose this option, your application will be more competitive if you are able to show an ongoing relationship or active conversation with your proposed presenters, community partners including their intentions to commit to the tour, pending financial support.

Once notified, you will be required to provide a finalised itinerary within 6 weeks, and prior to receiving payment. Itineraries will be reviewed and approved prior to payment. Tours which do not meet published criteria will not be supported.

You may wish to consider whether this approach is best suited to your tour. (If it does not suit, you can provide a confirmed itinerary.)

Against the criterion ‘Region’, there is the opportunity to discuss the regionality of your proposed itinerary.  This may be evidenced by discussing your proposed presentation partners and your relationship or active conversation with them, within your application.

Proposed tours will still need to have already undergone a high degree of planning to enable you to accurately project budget expenses. No additional investment will be available after approval of your grant.

If your tour is interrupted, for example, due to natural disasters or touring costs being significantly impacted by inflation, please contact us to discuss your circumstances. We will work with clients on a case-by-case basis with regards to any potential support.

We welcome national touring applications from all forms of professionally produced live performance.

The Australia Council also offers the Contemporary Music Touring Program which funds tours to regional and metropolitan locations. Applicants may apply for $5000 – $50,000 of funding depending on the locations of their tour, based on the respective ARIA code rating. Tours funded through the Contemporary Music Touring Program may be limited to metropolitan locations, whereas Playing Australia tours must include regional or remote locations. Please contact Artists Services to discuss your application.

Yes, if relevant. If your project has an environmental impact, you should provide evidence of an environmental impact plan which may include cost-benefits. Arts On Tour’s Green Touring Toolkit and Green Music Australia’s Sound Country provide provides detailed information and resources for artists and arts organisations on how to mount a sustainable tour.

Contemporary Touring Initiative

Up to three years of funding for the development and/or national touring of significant contemporary visual arts and craft exhibitions.

 About the program

The Contemporary Touring Initiative (CTI), as part of the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, supports significant exhibitions of work by living contemporary visual artists and craft practitioners that reach and engage national audiences, and extend into regional communities.

The program is targeted to ambitious organisations with demonstrated contemporary visual arts exhibition development and touring expertise to develop and/or tour an exhibition between calendar years 2023-2026.

The program will support projects that best demonstrate:

  • cutting-edge practice and innovation in how contemporary visual arts and craft is exhibited and toured, including new ways to reach and engage audiences
  • exhibitions that include the work of First Nations artists
  • strong partnerships, reach and impact in regional communities.

A national tour is defined as one that includes three or more states and territories outside of the applicant’s home state or territory.

Applicants awarded Contemporary Touring Initiative funding will be required to submit a progress report at the end of Year 1 of their grant in order to be paid in advance for subsequent touring years. The progress report must include:

  • itinerary and revised touring budget
  • presenter / venue confirmation forms for the tour. At least 40% of touring venues must be in regional areas.

Who can apply

Only organisations are eligible to apply.


Who can’t apply

You can’t apply for a grant if:

  • you received a grant, or administered a grant, from the Australia Council in the past and that grant has not been satisfactorily acquitted
  • you owe money to the Australia Council.

What you can apply for

You can apply for:

  • costs of research, development and design of the exhibition, including partnership development, critical writing, artist fees
  • commissioning of new work
  • the costs of touring, including exhibition production, installation, freight, engagement, promotion, public programs, artist residencies etc.
  • costs associated with the delivery of COVIDSafe touring. These may include costs such as additional cleaning within exhibition locations and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) costs .

Access costs are legitimate expenses and may be included in your application. We encourage applicants to ensure that their work is accessible to everyone. Therefore, budgets may also include costs associated with making activities accessible to a wide range of people (e.g. performances using Auslan, translation to other languages, captioning, audio description, temporary building adjustments, and materials in other formats).

If you are an applicant with a disability, or are working with artists with disability, you may apply for access costs associated with the use of an interpreter, translation services, specific technical equipment, carer or support worker assistance. Please contact Artists Services to discuss your specific needs.


What you can’t apply for

You can’t apply for the following:

  • core salaries.

Your application must comply with the following protocols. We may contact you to request further information during the assessment process, or if successful, as a condition of your funding.

  • Protocols for using First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property in the Arts

All applications involving First Nations artists, communities or subject matter must adhere to these Protocols, and provide evidence of this in their application and support material. More information on the First Nations Protocols is available here.

  • Commonwealth Child Safe Framework

All successful applicants are required to comply with all Australian law relating to employing or engaging people who work or volunteer with children, including working with children checks and mandatory reporting. Successful organisations who provide services directly to children, or whose funded activities involve contact with children, will additionally be required to implement the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.

Your application will be assessed by a panel of peer assessors. The peers will represent a range of areas relevant to contemporary visual arts and crafts exhibitions and touring.

Peers will assess your application against the following four criteria.

To assess how well your application meets our criteria, peers consider several prompts.

Please note that not all of the prompts will apply to your application, but that they are examples of the things our peers may consider.

Peers will assess the quality of your proposal.

They may consider:

  • curatorial excellence, including selection of work that is relevant and timely to the diversity of contemporary Australian culture
  • innovation in the touring model
  • calibre and track record of the applicant organisation, including but not limited to the touring track record of the applicant
  • expertise and track record of the participating artists and key personnel
  • relevance of the partners and their level of commitment to the tour
  • scale of the tour.

Peers will assess the level of engagement with audiences, communities and partners in your proposal.

They may consider:

  • evidence of presenter partnerships and collaboration with regional presenters and venues, including the extent to which regional presenters have confirmed or expressed interest in participating.
  • the engagement experiences offered to regional communities, including audience attendance, public programming, opportunities to interact with artists and work, online and educational engagement activities, and community engagement activities.
  • how partnerships will be developed and maintained with presenters throughout the triennium.

Peers will assess how broad the reach of your proposal is across the visual arts sector.

They may consider:

  • your plan to develop audiences or meet audience demand in the proposed locations, including communication and marketing strategies
  • evidence of diverse, strong partnerships across the contemporary visual arts sector
  • the range and diversity of touring destinations.

Peers will assess the viability of your proposal.

They may consider:

  • evidence of a realistic and accurate budget
  • an exhibition planning schedule confirming productions, itineraries and budgets at the touring stage
  • the logic of any proposed itinerary, including the impact this may have on the touring budget
  • capacity to deliver the project
  • forecasting of the way the funding will be leveraged to enhance touring deliverables over the three-year period
  • appropriate COVIDSafe protocols in place for artists, venues or locations and audiences
  • where relevant, evidence that you have considered and addressed any access issues associated with your project.

The types of questions we ask in the application form include:

  • the type of activity you will undertake
  • a title for your project
  • a summary of your project
  • an outline of your project and what you want to do
  • a timetable and touring itinerary for your project
  • how your project meets the assessment criteria
  • a projected budget which details the expenses, income, and in-kind support of the project
  • supporting material as relevant to your project.

You should submit support material with your application. The peer assessors may review this support material to help them gain a better sense of your project.

If your project includes research, development, design or commissioning activities, you should provide:

  • relevant artistic support material
  • biographies and CVs of the key artists, personnel and other collaborators.

If your project includes exhibition and touring activities, you should provide:

  • expressions of interest or letters of confirmation, submitted as one combined PDF, from regional venues from at least three states or territories in your tour
  • letters of support from up to five key non-venue partners, combined into a single PDF.

Types of support material we accept

Our preferred method of receiving support material is via URLs (weblinks).

You can provide up to three URLs (weblinks) that link to content that is relevant to your proposal. This may include video, audio, images, or written material.

These URLs can include a total of:

  • 10 pages of written material
  • 10 minutes of video and/or audio recording
  • 10 images.

Please note: Our peer assessors will not access any URLs that require them to log in or sign up to a platform. Please do not provide links to applications that require users to log in or pay for access.

If you are linking to media files that are private or password protected like Vimeo, please provide the password in the password field on the application form.

Other accepted file formats

If you cannot supply support material via URLs, you may upload support material to your application in the following formats:

  • written material (Word and PDF)
  • images (JPEG and PowerPoint)
  • video (MP4, QuickTime, and Windows Media)
  • audio (MP3 and Windows Media).

FAQs

Under the Contemporary Touring Initiative, a national tour is five or more locations to at least three states or territories outside the applicant’s home state. To be eligible the locations on a tour must have consecutive exhibition dates. Breaks in the middle of a consecutive schedule of exhibition venues are possible if there is a compelling reason and the impact on the funding request is minimal.

The presented work must be mainly by living contemporary Australian visual artists and craft practitioners.

To be eligible for Contemporary Touring Initiative funding, the work exhibited within a touring exhibition needs to be produced by Australian artists, or produced by an artist or collective of artists who are Australian citizens or have permanent resident status in Australia. An eligible work could also include a component of work produced by Australian and international artists as part of an Australian-international collaboration. Work of artists who are not Australian citizen may also be incorporated into an exhibition provided they are in a minority of the artists presented.

This Australia Council uses the ARIA (Accessibility Remoteness Index of Australia) to determine the regional classification for each town. The ARIA considers a range of factors, including distance to services, to group all locations in Australia into 5 ARIA Code areas. To find out if your project meets the eligible criteria (i.e. inclusion of venues with an ARIA rating of 1-4), and search for the relevant ARIA codes, please download this form. If you need help with your application, contact an Artists Services officer.

Yes, as long as you also include at least 40% of venues in regional locations in your itinerary.

Yes, your itinerary can include activities that offer additional opportunities for the community to engage with the artists or the art. As the main focus of this fund is exhibitions, additional activities should be scheduled in an efficient way within the itinerary.

Research costs, development and design of the exhibition, including partnership development, critical writing, artist fees, commissioning of new work, the costs of touring, including exhibition production, installation, freight, engagement, promotion, public programs, artist residencies. Under the fixed-term adjustments for applications to CMTP in 2021, applicants may also request costs associated with COVID Safe delivery and contingency.

Both buying and hiring equipment for the presentation of an exhibition are eligible. Applicants are encouraged to choose the most cost effective option and articulate a compelling reason within the application.

Contemporary Music Touring Program

Up to $50,000 to support national tours by musicians performing original contemporary music.

About the program

The Contemporary Music Touring Program (CMTP) supports national touring activity undertaken by Australian musicians performing original Australian contemporary music.

The tour must comprise of performances in at least three venues or locations outside of the performer’s hometown. Tours that include regional and remote destinations, or which assist performers residing in regional and remote areas to tour, are a priority for funding.

Grants are available from $5,000 to $50,000, depending on the number of tour venues or locations in regional or remote areas.

If you think you will have difficulty submitting your application online, please contact Artists Services

Who can apply

Individuals or organisations may apply to tour live music performances within Australia. Touring musicians must be performing original Australian contemporary music. Funding can be provided to performers, managers, agents, and music networks on behalf of professionals working in the Australian music industry. Applications must contain one tour only.


Who can’t apply

You can’t apply for a grant if:

  • your tour does not involve the presentation of original Australian contemporary music
  • you received a grant, or administered a grant, from the Australia Council in the past and that grant has not been satisfactorily acquitted
  • you owe money to the Australia Council.

What can you apply for

Under the Contemporary Music Touring Program, performances of original Australian contemporary music can include a wide range of different musical styles.

The tour must comprise of performances in at least three venues or locations outside of the performer’s hometown. Tours that include regional and remote destinations, or which assist performers residing in regional and remote areas to tour, are a priority for funding.

  • If your itinerary contains only metropolitan performances, you may request up to $15,000.
  • If your itinerary contains at least one regional or remote performance, you may request up to $25,000.
  • If 75% of your itinerary is to remote and/or very remote locations, you may request up to $50,000.
  • Please note: The minimum grant amount you can apply for is $5,000.

The Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA) helps determine the regional and remote reach of the tour. To find out if you meet the ARIA rating to qualify for additional funding, begin a grant in the Australia Council’s online system. When you get to the ‘Outline your project’ section, the system will automatically look up the ARIA code once you enter the details of the state, town and postcode of the location you are searching for. To assist in planning your tour, you can download the ARIA Code list from our website to search for the relevant ARIA codes. If you need help with your application, contact an Artists Services Officer.

Joint tours, where two or more independent performers are undertaking the same tour itinerary, are eligible under this program. These should be submitted as a single application. In such cases, the funding caps still apply.

You may apply for costs associated with the delivery of COVIDSafe touring. These may include costs such as additional cleaning costs within performance locations or for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to ensure the safety of the touring party.

To take account of the changed touring environment during the COVID-19 pandemic we will consider applications which include a portion delivered via digital channels.

We encourage the inclusion of additional activities which extend opportunities for community participation, such as workshops, master classes and all-age performance. This activity must take account of appropriate COVIDSafe protocols.


What can’t you apply for

You can’t apply for the following activity:

  • a tour to fewer than three venues or locations outside the performer’s home town
  • overseas tours
  • tours by non-Australian performers
  • tours which are primarily schools-based (except for applications seeking remote or very remote touring funds where the school is the primary venue in a remote or very remote location)
  • a series of performances at a single location
  • tours that do not involve the presentation of original Australian contemporary music.

Access costs are legitimate expenses and may be included in your application. We encourage applicants to ensure that their work is accessible to everyone. Therefore, budgets may also include costs associated with making activities accessible to a wide range of people (e.g. performances using Auslan, translation to other languages, captioning, audio description, temporary building adjustments, and materials in other formats).

If you are an applicant with a disability, or are working with artists with disability, you may apply for access costs associated with the use of an interpreter, translation services, specific technical equipment, carer or support worker assistance. Please contact Artists Services to discuss your specific needs.

Your application must comply with the following Protocols. We may contact you to request further information during the assessment process, or if successful, as a condition of your funding.

  • Protocols for using First Nations Cultural and Intellectual Property in the Arts

All applications involving First Nations artists, communities or subject matter must adhere to these Protocols, and provide evidence of this in their application and support material. More information on the First Nations Protocols is available here.

  • Commonwealth Child Safe Framework

All successful applicants are required to comply with all Australian law relating to employing or engaging people who work or volunteer with children, including working with children checks and mandatory reporting. Successful organisations who provide services directly to children, or whose funded activities involve contact with children, will additionally be required to implement the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations.

Applications to the Contemporary Music Touring Program will be assessed by a panel of peers drawn from the Music sector.

Peers will assess your application against the following three criteria:

The calibre of the artists and arts workers involved and the quality of the music.

In assessing this criterion, the assessment panel may consider:

  • the strength of the artistic support material provided
  • the track record of the key artists involved, including their achievements, as evidenced by their biography and professional profile.

Contributions to development of Australian culture.

In assessing this criterion, the assessment panel may consider:

  • proposed additional community activities included in the tour itinerary, such as workshops, master classes and/or all-age performances
  • any partnerships or collaborations with local personnel or organisations in touring locations
  • benefits provided through tour to people in touring locations (e.g. local emerging artists, audiences).
  • regional extent of the proposed tour, as indicated by the geographical locations of the proposed itinerary.

Realistic budgeting and touring logistics

In assessing this criterion, the assessment panel may consider:

  • how viable and achievable the project is (as evidenced by the budget, itinerary and planning)
  • the quality of the marketing/audience development strategy, including evidence of demand in proposed locations
  • the resources supporting the project (including financial and/or in-kind)
  • the strength of the people, presenters and partners involved (including confirmations)
  • appropriate COVIDSafe protocols in place for artists, venues or locations and audiences
  • where relevant, evidence of an environmental impact plan which may include cost-benefits.

Additional material can be submitted to help support your application. Peers will review support material to gain an understanding of the quality of your work, and where relevant, the skills and role of other artists or partners involved.

We do not accept support materials submitted via post. Application-related material received by post will not be assessed and will be returned to the sender. If you think you will have difficulty submitting your support material online, please contact Artists Services.

You can submit the following support material with your application:

1. Artistic support material

You can submit up to three URLs (weblinks) to written material, images, video or audio as a recent example of your work. Peers may review up to:

  • 10 pages of written material
  • 10 images
  • 10 mins of video or audio recording.

Learn more about support material, including how to submit late confirmations after the closing date, and advice on how to get examples of your work online.

In some circumstances we will accept support material in another format. Please contact Artists Services for further advice.

2.  Additional artist information

You can include a brief bio or curriculum vitae summary of any additional artists involved in your project. All bios should be included as a single document and a maximum of two pages in total.

3.  Letters of support

Where appropriate, you can include up to five letters from proposed participants in support of your project. All letters of support should be included as a single document and a maximum of five pages in total.

Additional information

Once you submit your application, we will send you an email acknowledging receipt of your application.

After you submit your application, we first check it meets the eligibility criteria for the grant or opportunity to which you are applying.

Applications to the Australia Council Grant Programs are assessed by arts practice peer panels against the published assessment criteria for the relevant grant program.

We aim to notify you of the outcome of your application no later than 12 weeks after the published closing date for the applicable grant round.

Once all applications have been assessed, you will be contacted about the outcome of your application. If you have been successful, you will also be sent a funding agreement. This outlines the conditions of funding, how you will be paid and your grant reporting requirements. The following accordion items outline these stages in more detail.

If your application is successful, you will receive an email advising you a grant is offered. You must then agree to the conditions of your grant, which represents the Australia Council’s contract with you – this can be done online, by email or by letter. Payment of a grant will not be made until the grant conditions have been agreed and accepted by all the relevant parties.

You should not start a project that depends on a grant until all relevant parties have agreed and accepted the grant conditions and we have evidence of such acceptance on file.

Standard grant conditions require you to, among other things:

  • seek prior approval for making a change to a funded project (for example, changes in the activity budget; changes to key creative personnel; or changes to start or end dates)
  • respond to requests for information about the project or grant
  • satisfactorily account for how the grant is spent (if you do not you will be required to return all monies for which you cannot satisfactorily account)
  • comply with all applicable laws
  • acknowledge the Australia Council’s support in all promotional material associated with the project; this includes use of the Australia Council’s logo and a standard text of acknowledgement.
  • provide artistic and financial acquittal reports at the end of the project
  • return any unspent grant funds at the completion of your project or on notice from us to return such unspent funds.

Grant agreements must be signed by a legal entity – either a legally constituted organisation or an individual. For unincorporated groups, see the section on administered grants

All individual or organisation grant applicants based in Australia must have an ABN. Individual applicants without an ABN may have their grant administered by an individual or organisation with an ABN. Organisations operating outside of Australia do not need an ABN to apply. Individuals based outside of Australia may not need an ABN to apply, depending on their circumstances (please check with your accountant or tax advisor).

The name of the applicant must match the name of the ABN and the name of the bank account into which we pay the funds. There are no exceptions to this rule. If applicants cannot provide an ABN and bank account that are in the same name as the applicant’s name, they will need to nominate an administrator for their grant.

Groups/ensembles/collectives, unincorporated associations/ unincorporated entities and other bodies with no legal status do not need an administrator if they have an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and bank account in their name. If they are unable to provide an active ABN and bank account that matches the name of the applicant, they must nominate an administrator. The name of the administrator must match the name of the ABN and bank account into which funds are paid if the application is successful.

If we approve your application you will need accept the conditions of the grant in a funding agreement.

After you accept your funding agreement online, we will automatically generate a payment for the grant on your behalf. You do not need to send us an invoice.

We will pay grant funds directly into your nominated bank account within two weeks after acceptance of the funding agreement. Grant payments cannot be postponed.

If you do not wish to have the grant funds paid directly into your bank account you can choose to have your grant administered by another individual or legally constituted organisation (Doesn’t apply to Arts Projects – Organisations).

When you apply, you will be asked to provide an active Australian Business Number or ‘ABN’. The ABN that you provide must correspond to the name of the applicant (or the administering body, if one has been nominated). When you accept your funding agreement, you will be asked to enter the details of the bank account you wish the grant to be paid into. The name associated with that bank account must correspond to the name in which the ABN has been registered.

Download the Australia Council for the Arts logo guidelines here.

Download the Major Festivals Initiative logo guidelines here.

Grant reports are required on completion of your project. Acquitting a grant means accurately reporting on the funded activities and the expenditure of Australia Council funding.

Please read your funding agreement to check details of the grant acquittal material you should provide.

The grant acquittal report is where you tell us:

  • how you spent your grant
  • what the artistic outcomes of your funded activity were.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report at the times and in the manner detailed in your funding agreement, the Australia Council will not make any further payments that may be due to you, and you will not be eligible  to apply for further grants.

If you do not provide a satisfactory grant report, the Australia Council may ask you to pay back all or part of the funding provided to you.

Grant reports are used by the Australia Council to fulfil obligations of accountability to the Australian Government. They are also essential to the development work of the Australia Council. The reports help us evaluate the achievements of funded activities, monitor the effectiveness of grant categories and ensure our policy development is consistent with the experience of artists in the field.

Reporting for Multi-year Funded Organisations

Organisations in receipt of multi-year funding are required to submit financial, statistical, and artistic reporting on an annual basis.

All reporting is submitted online via the Australia Council’s arts organisations reporting system.

If you are not sure what reporting you need to submit as part of your annual reporting, or what information to provide, please get in touch with your Australia Council contact.

All recipients must acknowledge that the Australia Council provided funding for their activities. When you acquit your grant, we will ask you how you acknowledged the Australia Council.

For printed or online material use our logo and this phrase:

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body OR The (company name) is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Logos for download and guidelines for the use of our logos.

Where projects do not have a public outcome, or do not produce any printed or online material, you will need to think about how best to acknowledge the Australia Council funding.

Frequently asked questions

Yes, if relevant. If your project has an environmental impact, you should provide evidence of an environmental impact plan which may include cost-benefits. Arts On Tour’s Green Touring Toolkit and Green Music Australia’s Sound Country provide provides detailed information and resources for artists and arts organisations on how to mount a sustainable tour.

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