NYC Musicians Union launches $40,000 Emerging Artist Project Grant

The Associated Musicians of Greater New York, Local 802 AFM today announced launch of the Emerging Artists Project (EAP), a four-year grant program that will provide bands and ensembles with support to firmly establish themselves in New York City and further the union’s efforts to ensure that all professional musicians can afford to live, work and raise a family in New York.

Launched in partnership with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the selected band and ensemble of three or more musicians will receive $10,000 per year to help pay fair wages, access health care and pension benefits, gain access to business support, mentorship, the union’s rehearsal space and other resources, as well as discounted rehearsal space and recording studio access provided by the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at their facility, The DiMenna Center for Classical Music.

One band or ensemble will be selected during the first year of the EAP, and applications are open Dec. 1st through Jan. 8, 2018.

"Our primary goal as a union is to help facilitate local musicians' ability to advocate for themselves, their careers, their families and their art by providing the strength they need to earn a fair living," said Tino Gagliardi, president, Local 802 American Federation of Musicians. "Supporting emerging musicians of all types and styles is essential if we are to raise the wage floor for musicians across this city. The Emerging Artists Project is the latest tool with which we can combat unfair treatment and exploitation, while simultaneously providing emerging musicians with the boost they need to become a well established and positive contributor to the music community."

Qualifying bands and ensembles must comprise at least 3 members and must be able to demonstrate at least a one-year history of performances. All genres of music performance are permitted and encouraged. Membership in Local 802 is not required at time of application. However, the accepted ensemble must sign a collective bargaining agreement with Local 802 in order to receive grant funding.

To apply, ensembles and bands must submit an application and materials at, featuring examples and documentation performances and business plan. An MP3 (or other format) of the ensemble performing at least 15 minutes and up to 30 minutes of music shall be uploaded to the application site. Applications will be reviewed by independent jurors drawn from the New York professional music community with expertise in each applicant’s style of music and by the leadership of the union.