Yukon musicians now have more opportunities to reach their full potential and help grow the territory’s music industry as a result of a new fund for musicians, according to the Yukon government.
In a June 6 press conference with performers in the room and reporters on the phone line, Minister of Economic Development Ranj Pillai announced the new performing musicians fund comes with a budget boost of $250,000 (up from $50,000) and updated program criteria that “reflect the needs of today’s industry.”
It replaces the existing sound recording fund, which launched in 2005.
“The music industry has evolved,” Pillai said.
“It was clear from the engagement with industry that we would need to modernize the program to continue to support Yukon musicians, not only in recording, but in marketing and training as well.”
On the website, the fund increases the range of eligible activities to include touring, showcasing, electronic press kits, music videos, marketing activities and sound recordings.
“One of the most significant improvements in the performing musicians fund is that we will now be offering funding for music video and electronic press kits in production,” Pillai said.
“Costs include expenses incurred from professional production companies, rental props, costumes and venues.”
Emerging musicians will be able to apply for 75 per cent of permitted expenses for a maximum of $10,000 per fiscal year. Established musicians will be able to apply for 75 per cent of allowed expenses for a maximum of $30,000 per fiscal year.
Pillai explained an adjudication process will be used to determine emerging versus established artists based on key criteria related to their career accomplishments to date. The business guidelines break down the difference between the two.
These guidelines state that Yukon resident musicians (or their music businesses) are eligible, and that for Yukon duos or groups (or their businesses) they will need minimum of half their members to be Yukon residents to be eligible. Yukon residents are defined as having lived in the territory for one year.
Pillai commented on the COVID-19-related circumstances the industry has navigated around, with performers at times being unable to travel, perform in front of live audiences or access studio space.
“We were very pleased to be able to support the recovery and future success of Yukon’s recording industry,” he said.
Pillai was unable to estimate how many people might take advantage of the new program and did not have the amount of applications received in the past handy during the conference.
In the release, virtual information sessions on the fund will take place June 13 at 2:30 p.m. and June 15 at 10 a.m.
The first intake of two per year will open July 4.
Contact Dana Hatherly at email@example.com