Frequently Asked Questions about the WPA Performance Grants
Last update 08/31/2023
Q: May my ensemble apply for a grant this year even if we applied in previous years?
A: Yes, absolutely! We encourage you to apply, and please help us spread the word to other orchestras.
Q: How can I find music by women composers?
A: Women have always composed, and music by women is available from every historical era and in every genre. To find it, you must be determined to research to uncover works that are unknown to you and your audiences.
- We have compiled a list of music by historic composers, which can serve as a starting point. Also see our orchestral editions and editions of orchestral music by Amy Beach.
- Conductor Anna Edwards started Anna’s Composer Database to encourage and promote musical diversity. It features women and other historically marginalized composers. This is a carefully curated and informative database; first month free (and then only $5 per month).
- The Boulanger Initiative has a new database of music by historic (non-living) women and other gender-marginalized people.
- Diana Ambache has compiled this important list of repertoire lists.
- We also have a longer list of much of the repertoire of The Women’s Philharmonic. We also highly recommend the Composer Diversity Database to discover new repertoire!
It takes a lot of digging to find new repertoire and it takes time to study unknown scores. We challenge you to take up this task and we are eager to help!
Q: Is there any fee required to apply for a Performance Grant?
A: No, there is no fee to apply for a grant!
Q: Can our Canadian orchestra apply?
A: No, sorry, this funding is for U.S. orchestras only. But please tell us about what you are planning, sometimes we have discretionary funding and at the very least we will help to spread the word about your concert plans!
Q: Can I upload a video or sound file?
A: We do not accept video or sound file uploads. We recommend you provide us with a link from Youtube, Soundcloud, or other online repositories.
Q: What about copyright? Can I use private links on Soundcloud or Youtube?
A: You are welcome to provide unlisted or private links; see Soundcloud and Youtube for help and recommendations. Also it is a “fair use” exemption of copyright law to provide short excerpts for the purpose of study and review.
Q: Our musicians union won’t let us share any audio recordings.
A: Most unions are fine with short clips being used for purposes of promotion or study. Ask your union for details. Also you can provide unlisted or private links to recordings of your work, so that the recordings are kept private.
Q: Chamber ensembles should feature women composers too! Can my string quartet/ piano trio/ brass quintet etc. chamber ensemble apply for a grant?
A: Sorry, no. Our grants are focused on orchestras and orchestral repertoire, which we are defining as 10 or more instruments, featuring bowed strings of the violin family.
Q: Can my wind ensemble apply for a grant?
A: No, sorry. While we agree the need is great in this area, and that there is very little knowledge of the wide range of works written by women composers for wind ensemble, at this time our grants are focused on the orchestral repertoire. Maybe someday we will expand.
Q: We are a chorus, but every year we hire an orchestra to perform with us. Can we apply for a grant?
A: No, sorry. At this time our grants are focused on transforming orchestral culture and the orchestral canon. But we would like to hear about your project, we can blog about it and cheer you on, and sometimes offer suggestions for sources of funding.
Q: Can our opera company apply for a grant?
A: No, sorry. Our grants are focused on transforming orchestral culture and the orchestral canon. But we would like to hear about your project, we can blog about it and cheer you on, and sometimes offer suggestions for sources of funding.
Q: Can I download the application form and fill it out offline?
A: Yes, you can download the 2023 application form here. You’ll also want to download the detailed grant information to help with your application. When you are finished, submit your completed application using the link found on the 2023 WPA Performance Grant Application page.
Q: Can I submit additional/supporting documents?
A: Yes! Though you cannot submit files directly through the application form, there is space to provide a direct link to files located online (like GoogleDocs, Dropbox, etc.). If you have any questions on how to submit additional documents, like budget files and/or publicity files, you can send an email to [email protected].
For Further Help
For programming, process, or eligibility inquiries, and technical questions or problems email [email protected].