Are you a musician (singer, instrumentalist, composer, producer) interested in a little change of scenery and some creative invigoration? If yes, then an artist residency may be the thing you need to kick things up a notch, especially if you feel you may be stuck in a rut or that you could do with some new knowledge, skill and inspiration.
According to Wikipedia, artist residency programs exist to invite artists, academicians, curators, and all manner of creative people for a time and space away from their usual environment and obligations. They provide a time of reflection, research, presentation and/or production.
The following 2 residencies are open for 2016 applications and it would definitely be worth your while to apply.
The Redbull Music Academy 2016 – Montreal, Canada.
Application Deadline 7th March 2016.
Founded in 1998, The Red Bull Music Academy (RBMA) is a series of music workshops and festivals that travels the world, with the main five-week event held in a different city each year. It describes itself as a global music institution committed to fostering creativity in music, with 60 participants each year selected from all over the world. RBMA Alumni include Aloe Blacc, Flying Lotus, Oddisee, South Africa’s Black Coffee (Cape Town 2003) and Culoe De Song (Barcelona 2008) as well as Kenya’s Blinky Bill (Tokyo 2014).
Attendees participate in a festival of concerts, art installations, club nights and compulsory lectures by influential figures in contemporary music, ranging from composers, producers, sound engineers and technological pioneers, who over the years have spanned various genres and fields such as Hip hop, Disco, EDM, etc and have included notable names such as Erykah Badu, Papa Wemba, Che Pope, ASAP Rocky, Slick Rick, Mark Ronson, Madlib, Recloose…the list is vast, but you can check out previous lectures here.
Two weeks are especially dedicated to giving the participants the opportunity to collaborate in up to twelve studios specially designed for each edition of the Red Bull Music Academy. They have access to a range of the latest gear as well as analog equipment for music production and performance with no deadlines or set quotas. Red Bull also does not own the music produced during this time.
Applicants are required to submit a demo CD of their work, be it original productions, songs or a DJ set, as well as a physically completed questionnaire, to be mailed to a Red Bull Music Academy office in Cologne, Germany.
Sound amazing? Apply here.
OneBeat 2016 – USA.
Application Deadline 5th February.
“OneBeat is a music exchange and incubator for music-based social entrepreneurship, where innovative musicians from around the world launch collaborative projects designed to make a positive impact on local and global communities. An initiative of the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and produced by Found Sound Nation, OneBeat is cultivating a groundbreaking international network of leading artistic, technological, and social innovators in music.”
With it’s inaugural program running in 2012, OneBeat may be relatively new but is already well established as an initiative which takes place annually in the United States. Musicians ranging between the ages of 19-35 are invited to apply for the one month long foray to collaboratively write, produce, and perform original music, as well as develop strategies for arts-based social engagement.
The fellows, selected from around the globe, spend the first two weeks collaborating in custom built studios to create, record and incubate new material, which they then perform to various audiences while on tour for the following two weeks, working with local musicians and leading workshops with the youth. The musicians are encouraged to listen deeply to each others’ musical voices, and to create work that values the complexity and idiosyncrasies of each tradition, creating risky, wholly unique musical works.
Kenyan alumni include Muthoni Drummer Queen, Kato Change, Nina Ogot, Kasiva Mutua and Blinky Bill.
Feeling adventurous? Apply here.
Both residencies are fully funded with no application fee so there’s more reason to apply.