Updated May 2022
Let’s face it, researching grants for choirs is literally THE worst. There is a ridiculous number of grants to sift through online, and after searching through seemingly thousands, you’ll be lucky to find just one for which your chorus is actually eligible.
And so, as choir leaders, we are forced to spend countless hours of research to find the right grants for our chorus. In this article, I will help you narrow down the best-suited grants specifically for adult community choruses.
Are you ready? Let’s dig in.
1. National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has multiple grant opportunities for which community choruses can apply. NEA grants can be used for “projects” that include specific events or activities focusing on various subjects such as creating art, delivering art to underserved populations, enriching local communities through art, and art research. Find out more: https://www.arts.gov/grants
2. Knight Foundation
The Knight Foundation supports four program areas: journalism, communities, technology, and (you guessed it) the arts! Preference is given to organizations that display artistic excellence, authenticity and inclusion, and technological innovation.
Find out more: http://www.knightfoundation.org/programs/arts
3. U.S. Bank Foundation
You might not expect a bank to be a primary supporter of music programs, but the U.S. Bank Foundation takes the cake for financially supporting a multitude of music programs across the country. Under their “work, home, play” programs, choruses fall under the “play” category, focusing on arts and culture. They specifically support community music programs for adults and children alike, giving equal opportunity and preference to low or moderate-income areas.
4. Wells Fargo's Frank and Lydia Bergen Foundation
Like the U.S. Bank Foundation, the Wells Fargo Bergen Foundation provides grants to 501(c)(3) classical music programs that perform to educate the public in musical art forms. While it is technically not limited to geographical areas, preference is given to organizations that reside in New Jersey or New York.
5. MAP Fund
The MAP Fund sponsors performing arts projects that “question, disrupt, complicate, and challenge inherited social and cultural hierarchy notions across the current American landscape.” If you can make the case that your music and performance will do this, then this grant is for you.
Find out more: https://mapfundblog.org
6. The Amphion Foundation
The Amphion Foundation offers a grant for high-quality choral ensembles that commit to performing contemporary music. Their website states that "specific consideration is given to ensembles with a history of high-quality performances, fostering the public knowledge and appreciation of contemporary music."
Find out more: https://amphionfoundation.org/amphion-grant-application
7. The Adolf Busch Award
The Adolf Busch Award was established for one purpose: "to recognize and reward nonprofit organizations that use music to promote a more civil and just society." As such, special emphasis is given to applicants whose mission is to target social justice and inequality.
Find out more: http://adolfbuschaward.org
For more national, regional, and statewide grant opportunities, download our grants database for community choruses featuring over 1,000 grants! For tips on the grant application process, visit our blog "Best Practices: Community Chorus Grant Applications."
Tori Cook is the former Director of Sales & Marketing at Chorus Connection, an active board member of the Greater Boston Choral Consortium, and a soprano with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. In a past life, she was the Music Director of the Harborlight Show Chorus and President of Chorus pro-Musica. When not making music, she daydreams about adopting a golden retriever puppy and scuba diving to exotic locations around the world.