New Music USA Announces 114 Project Grants Totaling $529,420

Totaling $529,420 in funding, this year’s grants support new American music projects in 27 states. The 114 awarded projects include a wide range of activities and events involving new music as a central element; many projects involve collaborations in dance, theater, opera, and the visual arts.

Written By

Megan Ihnen

New Music USA announced today its ninth round of project grant awards, determined on June 30 after extensive outside panel review. Totaling $529,420 in funding, this year’s grants support new American music projects in 27 states. The 114 awarded projects include a wide range of activities and events involving new music as a central element; many projects involve collaborations in dance, theater, opera, and the visual arts.

New Music USA’s platform offers important promotional tools for artists that extend the program’s service beyond financial support. As part of the application process, artists create project pages that include narrative descriptions and media samples. These are not available to the public until the awards are determined, when the awarded project pages become part of an online gallery. Project updates from the artists, and the interaction with followers, assist artists in engaging with the broader community and allow the public to experience new work in development.

Interim CEO Deborah Steinglass commented, “This current round of project grants demonstrates not only an enormous breadth and depth of creative work in the United States today, it also speaks to the importance of artists to our society as a whole. These projects touch upon the core of what it means to be human by stimulating our intellects, evoking our internal emotions, creating respite from our daily lives, raising our consciousness around themes of social justice and equality, and so much more; artists are in fact serving as agents of change. I can’t wait to experience the art created from this round of project grants, and it’s my hope that many others will explore and experience this work as well, and make new art a part of their daily lives.”

Please help us celebrate the following projects:

The Francesca Harper Project collaborates with The D.O.M.E Experience
Invisible Anatomy – Illumination
Bora Yoon + Karmina Silec :: CHOREGIE Project
Hollow Square
Leyla McCalla | Breaking the Thermometer to Hide the Fever
Urdimbre y Trama/Warp and Weft
The Dances Are For Us
Red Prada
No Seasons: A Post-Climate Change Take on Vivaldi
GOAT Commissioning Project
Ornithologies: Fuego Quartet and Visual Artist Juan Fontanive
Composer Portrait: Oscar Bettison
Emerging Artist Residencies
Recording of Commissions by Alvin Lucier & Jordan Dykstra
Cosmic Language
Allentown Symphony Commission by Chris Theofanidis
In the Brink – New Work for Bergamot Quartet + Percussion
Echo Chamber: Interactive Sound Sculpture for Installation and Performance
An Exploration of Age: Cheat Day’s Interdisciplinary Process and Performance
Shake the World
DanceVisions Residency
The Perfume Project (working title)
Woodstock historic site artists in residence: Soul Inscribed
In search of lost sounds
Nashville Symphony Premiere at the League of American Orchestras Conference
Identity: Freedom — Dave Burrell, Andrew Cyrille, William Parker, and others
Imagine – Peace at Play
The Solo Piano Works of Nathan Corder
THREE RITES: Happiness
The Furies: An Opera for Laptop Orchestra (premiere of Act III)
Presence: Stenberg|Cahill Duo & Pamela Z
Sprocket: A scrap metal sextet composed by Steve Snowden for reed quintet & rideable percussion bicycle
City of Women at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
The Buffalo Chamber Players record Caroline Mallonee’s String Tunes
Grace and Mercy
El País Invisible (The Invisible Nation): Inspired by Political Invisibility, Sovereignty, and the Desire for Belonging
Transience: [Switch~] commissions Anna-Louise Walton
Expanding Conventions: Quartet for 6
The Clarice presents Brooklyn Rider’s
Pronoun Emergencies
Mending Wall
Chris Dingman Trio: Embrace
Caramoor presents John Luther Adams’ songbirdsongs
Edgefest 2019: OUT West
Connecticut Summerfest 2019
American Music Festival 2019: Sing Out, New York!
Bone within Ash: the Fires of Varanasi
Time forever dividing itself toward innumerable futures
World Premiere of Joel Thompson Work by Project Inclusion String Quartet at Grant Park Music Festival
Sounds from the Tank and New Music on the Plains: New Music for Flute and Percussion from Katherine Bergman, Joshua Clausen, and Everette Minchew with a recording at The Tank.
Rambler, Worlds Worlds A Part
New Work for Wave Field Synthesis by Nina C. Young, Performed by the American Brass Quintet
Vivian Fung World Premiere
Dark Exhalation
New Commission by Allison Loggins-Hull to be performed by Raleigh Civic Chamber Orchestra
CULTIVATE 2018 Emerging Composers’ Institute
‘Shaamya – Of Equality’
Traced Upon Cinders
Treehouse Shakers’ The Boy Who Grew Flowers
Emma O’Halloran New Marimba Work Recording
Not-So-Heavy Metals
Pandora’s Box – commission a film score to this classic silent film, premiere & repeat performances
Native American Composer Apprentice Project (NACAP)
Musical Fund Society Bicentennial: New Commissions from Tania León, Stephen Jaffe, Roberto Sierra, Augusta Read Thomas
Arboreous Incantations: a recording project for three piccolos
Ear Taxi Festival 2020
Song Sessions
Endless Shapes
National Park Centennial Commissions Commercial CD Recording
MIND THE GAP: Reflections on Beauty
Listen to the Future: Inclusive and Equitable Orchestras
in the shelter of the fold / epilogue
Narrow Sea
Last Audience
2020 Women Composers Festival – Kate Soper; Gabriela Ortiz; Jessica Krash
The Blessing of the Fleet
The Lark Quartet: 30th Anniversary Album
Breaking and Entering
Chunky in Heat
String Theory: Works for string orchestra/KINETIC + Pierre Jalbert
Everything Changes, Nothing Changes
Val Jeanty and Risha Rox: Ritual Merging
Chasing Memories in ‘Choreograph’: new music inspired by the photographs of James Welling
Life in The Lower East Side, 1937-1950: A Live Soundtrack
Ice Hours
EMEWS to the East
Third Coast Percussion Residency
The Ballad of the Brown King – Recording
The Cutouts (Matisse)
MEET US QUICKLY WITH YOUR MERCY: Part 2 of the Decarceration Trilogy
Re:Sound New Music Festival 2019
YInMn Project
‘A Few Kites’ – Music for Trumpet and Electronics Performed by Andy Kozar
The Female Gaze: New Works from George, Herbst, and Peacocke
Boston New Music Festival 2019
National String Project Consortium 20th Anniversary Virtual Concert

Launched in October 2013, New Music USA’s project grants program has now distributed $3,396,398 in support of 672 projects. Of these projects, 50% were for the creation of new work. 41% of the project grant awardees are first-time recipients of grants from New Music USA and its legacy organizations, Meet The Composer and the American Music Center.

New Music USA is committed to making the grant application process equitable, and it’s our goal to remove barriers to applying for grants. For that reason, project grants applicants are given simple guidelines and are asked to provide a brief project description and work samples. The project grants peer review process is another example of an ongoing effort to dismantle bias. For this ninth round we engaged a panel of 41 artists and administrators that was comprised of 78% women and 42% people of color who worked remotely online from around the country. The number of applications received determined the number of panelists.

Project creators choose a category during the application process. That choice determines how panelists are assigned. Here are the eight categories and the number of recipients in each category: Dance (30); Electronics (29); Interdisciplinary (56); Jazz (16); Recording (44); Large Ensemble (24); Small Ensemble (56); and Theater (21).

Projects are first screened by our staff for eligibility and completeness to make sure projects contain sufficient information, media samples that work, etc. Projects are then evaluated through a peer review process. Projects are reviewed by the panelists for artistry, impact, and capacity, with artistry taking priority over all other considerations. The panelist criteria for project grants is available here.

New Music USA would like to thank all of the panelists involved with the Winter 2019 round: Amanda Consol, Amy Miller, Arone Dyer, Ashley Jackson, Chen-Hui Jen, Chris Kim, Christina Butera, Chrysanthe Tan, Cynthia Hopkins, Diane Hunger, Germaul Barnes, Ginger Dolden, Heather Buchman, Imani Mosley, Isabelle O’Connell, Jolene Masone, Jocelyn Zelasko, Jorge Villavicencio Grossman, Kaitlin Bove, KT Nelson, Lauren Deutsch, Majel Connery, Mary Madigan, Melissa Wimbish, Michael Hall, Misha Penton, Odeya Nini, Rajna Swaminathan, Rhonda Taylor, Roland Vazquez, Sasha Leitman, Sarah Bob, Samantha Boshnack, Shawn Galvin, Stella Sung, Susan Meyers, Texu Kim, Tian Zhou, Victoria Jordanova, Wayne Wallace, and Yu-Hui Chang.

The next round of project grants will open for requests in Fall 2019.