Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour has said that “British Columbia’s music sector has seen immense growth and success, thanks to the contributions of our many talented artists. The funding announced today from the BC Music Fund will serve to further support artists and live music-related businesses, including festivals, venues and event producers, ensuring a strong sector for years to come.”

The Province of British Columbia and Creative BC announced the allocation of $3.8 million from the BC Music Fund with the opening of three new funding programs today.

Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour, and Prem Gill, CEO of Creative BC, and industry representatives, made the announcement at 604 Records. Songs were performed by Frazey Ford, one of British Columbia’s celebrated songwriters.

A total of $2.5 million has been dedicated to support the Live Music program.  B.C.-based festivals, venues, live music presenters and event producers can apply for funding aimed at increasing the number of live music performances within the province. Funding will support business development activities that directly contribute to the growth and sustainability of live music events, such as infrastructure improvements, new marketing initiatives and strategy development. The deadline for the first program intake is Feb. 1, 2017, with a second intake in June 2017.

In addition, $1 million will be provided for the new Industry Initiatives program which will support industry events and export activities, including industry conferences, trade missions and collaborative export marketing, to further grow and showcase B.C.’s music industry. Funding will also support training activities that will further develop the business knowledge of artist-entrepreneurs and industry professionals.

Finally, $300,000 will be allocated toward research program funding and will support projects that increase knowledge and inform the growth, evolution and innovation of British Columbia’s diverse and distinct music sector. This includes data collection on economic impact, development of new products, researching export opportunities to new markets, consumer behaviour research, feasibility studies for new initiatives within the music industry and other research.

Eligible applicants for the Industry Initiatives and the Research programs include industry associations and business collaborations. Applications for these two programs will be accepted on a rolling intake until funds have been allocated.

From January through March 2017, the BC Music Fund will launch additional programs to support B.C.’s diverse music industry. The fund will support seven programs, including Sound Recording, Live Music, Industry Initiatives, Research, Careers of B.C. Artists, Music Company Development, and Innovation.

The BC Music Fund is hosting a series of public regional-outreach meetings to share information about new programs and build relationships with music industry partners throughout British Columbia.  Meetings will be held in Victoria, Nanaimo, Kelowna, Prince George, Smithers, Nelson and Merritt in January and February 2017.