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GRANT ROUND 4 AWARDS
We are delighted to have announced the recipients of our fourth funding round, awarding a further £100,000 to twenty-four period-instrument ensembles. In response to the continuing demand for funding, these projects were selected from over 50 applications with total requests for support of more than £300,000.
Since Continuo was founded in September 2020, the total support provided for the UK early music sector amounts to £460,000., awarded to sixty-five UK period-instrument ensembles, our grantee community.
The latest project grants will support 67 performances and recordings between October 2022 and March 2023 in 45 locations across the UK. This will bring the total number of communities benefiting from Continuo-supported performances to 105.
The Round 4 grant recipients are:
Baroque In The North, Brook Street Band, Cedar Consort, Ceruleo, Chelys Consort of Viols, Ex Cathedra, Feinstein Ensemble, Figure Ensemble, Fiori Musicali, Fretwork, Galliarda, Gonzaga Band, Laudonia, Linarol Consort of Viols, Lux Musicae London, Manchester Baroque, The Mozartists, Musical & Amicable Society, Sackbut Frenzy, Solomon’s Knot, Spiritato, The Harmonious Society of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen, The Vauxhall Band, and Yorkshire Baroque Soloists.
Full details of the ensembles and their projects can be viewed by clicking the button below.
Applicants were invited to request amounts ranging from £2,000 to £10,000 to support UK projects scheduled to take place between October 2022 and March 2023. For recently formed ensembles (ca. June 2019 - June 2022), we stated a preference for supporting live concerts or tours.
For example, grant proceeds could be used by a period-instrument ensemble to:
provide the funding to mobilise a performance at risk of being cancelled
fund a new project where there is uncertainty about audience size
fund a chamber recital series
tour an existing programme to new UK locations
fund the recording of new repertoire
create a filmed concert which can be used to generate further touring opportunities
Grant requests could be for up to a maximum of 90% of the Project Cost. Applicants were asked to provide a credible plan for the complementary project funding.
Continuo Foundation awarded £100,000 in grants to 24 ensembles. Within this, awards were made to 3 recently formed ensembles who received approximately 15% of the funds available.
Eligible ensembles are UK-based professional groups of at least three musicians playing period instruments, or faithful replicas, and focusing primarily on music repertoires from the Middle Ages up until the early 19th century. The proposed project may include vocalists, as long as the instrumental ensemble applying has at least three instrumentalists. Projects may also include new works commissioned for period instruments or combine early and contemporary repertoires in their programmes.
Existing Continuo Foundation grantees were eligible to apply provided they are in compliance with the terms of their grant(s).
The main objective of our grants is to mobilise projects of outstanding artistic merit which create meaningful work for freelance period musicians, and which bring period-instrument music to audiences across the UK, engaging and inspiring people and enriching communities. The key criteria for assessing applications are:
the artistic merit and originality of the proposed project;
the number of instrumentalists engaged and the proportion of the grant funds dedicated to artists’ fees;
the extent to which new live or virtual audiences will be engaged; and
for recently formed ensembles, the extent to which the project proposed is realistic and will contribute to establishing the group's credentials and visibility.
In choosing which projects to support, in addition to the considerations above, there will be an assessment of the artistic excellence and recent activity of each ensemble. For the avoidance of doubt, ensembles do not need to meet all of the criteria below; the list is designed to give a sense of the areas being looked at by the Advisory Panel and Trustees in their decision-making. These include:
public performances since 2019, including those cancelled due to Covid-19
critically acclaimed recordings (including CDs, broadcasts, videos, etc.) since 2019
support of early-career instrumentalists and vocalists
innovative programming, including works by diverse composers
diversity of performers and administrators
involvement in outreach and education projects
registered UK charity
The Trustees also consider the quality of the application itself, as we believe this is a reflection of the ensemble's ability to carry out the project to a high standard.
RECENTLY FORMED ENSEMBLES - EVALUATION CRITERIA
For ensembles formed between ca. June 2019 and June 2022, the Advisory Panel will consider the areas set out below:
evidence of public performances (including any that were cancelled)
background information on the musicians comprising the ensemble
the rationale for the formation of the group
repertoire being explored, aspirations, etc.
The applicants in this category were asked to submit a 10-minute, unedited video of the ensemble performing together. This could be an extract from a live-streamed concert, or part of a performance filmed on a smart phone. If there is no film footage from performances, we will consider a video from a rehearsal. The video does not need to be professionally filmed - we look for the quality of the ensemble playing, not the quality of the video.
NB - In order to be eligible, an ensemble must have had at least one public performance before 30th June 2022.
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